Friday, March 5, 2010

Sage Grouse -Indicator Species

You can tell how healthy an ecosystem is by the presence of certain plants and animals. Sage Grouse are one of those species. Sage Grouse have steadily declined in number over the past century. The main culprits in this decline are humans and their activities and their livestock.

They require large tracts of healthy sage brush in order to flourish. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management has steadily sprayed and plowed sage brush for the benefit of the livestock industry for the past 50 years. With the decision to not list the Sage Grouse as endangered today, the Secretary of The Department of Interior, Ken Salazar, has just told them to keep plowing and spraying.

The Sage Grouse in this Photo is strutting on a former domestic sheep bedding ground. The bedding ground is infested with weeds from over-grazing by the domestic sheep, which hinders the strutting activity of the Sage Grouse.

More photos here

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