Wyoming’s Sage Grouse Receives National Recognition
One the topics we have covered again and again on Capitol Outlook has been the battle between Wyoming and the federal government over the state’s plan to manage wolf populations – the feds say it doesn’t do enough to protect the endangered wolf; Wyoming digs in its heels and won’t budge. A very expensive stalemate.
So it may have surprised some when Wyoming landed a leading role in the decision today (Friday) by the Obama Administration not to list the sage grouse as a threatened or endangered species – despite recognition that there are only a tenth as many birds as there were a century ago.
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar recognized the work of Wyoming, home to the bird’s most abundant population, as leading the way in conserving the species. Even the New York Times lauded Gov. Dave Freudenthal for the policy of identifying and protecting “core areas” for sage grouse.
The sage grouse will be listed as a “candidate” species with annual reviews to see how it’s faring. We’ll talk to Freudenthal – and a panel of legislators – about that decision on Capitol Outlook this week.