Category

Issues

Wyoming Rep Cynthia Lummis responds to State of Union Address

By | Issues | No Comments

Washington, D.C. (January 12, 2016) – In response to President Obama’s final State of the Union address to Congress, Western Caucus Chairman Cynthia Lummis (WY-At large) issued the following statement on the state of the West: “Reviewing the executive’s past seven years of manufacturing regulations, designating land unilaterally, empowering Washington, killing energy jobs, burying agriculture under red tape, and fiddling as the West burns shows President Obama and his Administration have utterly failed the West. But as this regime enters its final year, we can see light at the end of the tunnel at last. “The future holds the key; it holds the opportunity to enact the reforms that Western members of Congress have been pushing these past seven years…

Read More

Game and Fish considers migration route protections

By | Issues | No Comments

By CHRISTINE PETERSON Casper Star-Tribune Published:November 9, 2015 7:44AM Wyoming could become the first state in the country to formally recognize some of the most cutting-edge big game research.   CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — Nearly all of Wyoming’s big game animals migrate, and in much the same way. They wander from lush, green mountains in the summer to dry, wind-swept prairies in the winter. And recent mule deer research has shown their movements are surprisingly precise. Pathways trickle together like county roads that merge into highways before becoming interstates. Those paths, with food-rich spots along the way, allow Wyoming’s elk, deer and pronghorn to take advantage of the best seasonal vegetation available in an arid, high-elevation state. It’s what keeps…

Read More

Hunters report self defense in two MT Grizzly Bear deaths

By | Issues | No Comments

Montana wildlife officials said yesterday that two grizzly bears were killed last week in separate incidents reported by hunters in southwestern Montana. A lone female grizzly bear reportedly surprised a man hunting elk at Big Creek north of Gardiner on Oct. 28. The hunter reported to Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks that he came upon the bear feeding on a carcass in the brush and that the bear charged him. The hunter said he first used bear spray to deter the attack then shot the bear in self defense. The second incident was reported on Oct. 31 by a group of elk hunters who said they came upon and surprised a female grizzly bear with two young bears at Johnson…

Read More

Lesser Prairie-chicken Population Increased 25% From 2014 to 2015, Aerial Survey Shows

By | Issues | No Comments

Recent aerial surveys conducted in Oklahoma and four other states indicate the number of lesser prairie-chickens has increased an average of 25 percent from last year. (WAFWA photo) An abundance of spring rainfall, along with ongoing efforts associated with the Lesser Prairie-chicken Range-wide Conservation Plan, has helped increase the lesser prairie-chicken’s population approximately 25 percent from 2014 to 2015, according to results from a recent range-wide aerial survey. Increases were observed in three of four of the bird’s ecoregions across five states: Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. The Sand Sage Prairie Region of southeast Colorado showed the biggest gain: approximately 75 percent from a year ago. The Mixed Grass Prairie Region of the northeast Panhandle of Texas, northwest…

Read More

OK Oil, gas group contributes to Prairie-Chicken surveys

By | Issues | No Comments

During its regular meeting Monday, June 1, the Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation Commission accepted a $250,000 contribution from the oil and gas industry for efforts to conserve the lesser prairie-chicken. The Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association, which represents about 2,700 oil and gas producers, presented the check to help fund surveys of the bird in northwestern Oklahoma, in accordance with the range-wide conservation plan developed by the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies. Kim Hatfield, OIPA board member and Regulatory Committee chairman, said the surveys to locate areas where lesser prairie-chickens are found not only benefit the efforts of the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation, but make it easier for the oil and gas industry to remain in compliance with the…

Read More

States Defend Their Sage Grouse Preservation Efforts

By | Issues | One Comment

…federal land use plans "may be, in fact, more dangerous than a listing" of the bird. She added that state plans "can be much more nimble" than federal plans, which are very difficult to modify.The Interior Department is expected to finalize updated land use plans related to the sage grouse this month and faces a Sept. 30 deadline to decide whether to recommend federal protection for the bird. Environmental advocates have been pushing for nearly a decade for the…

Read More

The Verdict Is In: State Management Plans Work

By | Issues, Press Releases | No Comments

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE The Verdict Is In: State Management Plans Work Fmr. Federal BLM Director Warns of ‘Federal Unilateralism’ Preaches ‘Stewardship of Federal Lands’ to Protect Sage-grouse May 19, 2015                                                              Contact: drew@biggameforever.org                                                                                                                      (703) 535-3390   National Desk: Ryan Benson, President of BigGame Forever, released the following statement following this morning’s U.S. House Natural Resources Committee hearing on “Empowering State Management of Greater Sage Grouse”: “Chairman Rob Bishop and members of the House Committee on Natural Resources deserve to be commended for exploring the most effective means possible of achieving Sage-grouse conservation,” Benson said. “The insightful commentary offered by state management officials shed important light on the effectiveness of state-led species conservation across nearly 165 million acres of western…

Read More

Endangered species listing for sage grouse could affect Wyoming’s economy

By | Issues | No Comments

…the sage grouse from being added to the endangered species list. But many sage grouse supporters in Wyoming are not pleased about the effort. All three members of Wyoming’s congressional delegation are co-sponsors on bill that would block the federal government from listing the sage grouse as an endangered species for six to 10 years. “States like Wyoming are already leading the way when it comes to protecting species on the ground — including the sage grouse,” said Sen.

Read More

Protecting the Sage Grouse requires local conservation solutions, collaboration

By | Issues | No Comments

By Doug YoungBoth the Gunnison and greater sage grouse are renown throughout the West for their elaborate courtship rituals. However, it is not the only means to conserving species. Recognizing the importance of the sagebrush habitat on her land, she partnered with a local land conservancy to permanently protect her property for the benefit of the recently listed Gunnison sage grouse.

Read More

National Security Beholden to Endangered Species Act:Congress Must Act to Protect Military Readiness

By | Issues | One Comment

While the FWS is eager to restrict human activities on these and other lands, the negative effects appear to come with few conservation benefits for the bird. Additionally, seasonal and spatial restrictions could limit maneuvers and other vital training procedures.This story is repeated at other military installations. Due to the ESA’s inflexible nature, conflicts at these military installations are likely if the grouse is regulated under the ESA.

Read More