Greater Sage-Grouse, another species on the edge

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Greater Sage-Grouse, grasses and RabbitbrushGreater Sage-Grouse, grasses and Rabbitbrush

Some mornings I wish I could wake up and only find good news about nature and the non-human inhabitants of this world but sadly it just seems to get worse. These Greater Sage-Grouse images were taken last week in Beaverhead County, Montana. Some of the ranchers there are taking steps to protect these handsome upland birds. I wish everyone was working to save them.

Greater Sage-Grouse adult crossing a roadGreater Sage-Grouse adult crossing a road

Greater Sage-Grouse should already be on the endangered species list but they aren’t. I found out this week that a lek, the location where these large grouse gather for courtship, is in danger of being lost to development in Morgan County, Utah. These upland game birds have suffered a huge decline in population primarily because of habitat destruction.

Greater Sage-Grouse chick crossing a roadGreater Sage-Grouse chick crossing a road

Do we need yet another planned community that will chase these impressive birds off a lek they have used for a very long time to court? Their habit is dwindling, becoming fragmented and these birds are under enormous pressure. Oil fields, fracking and all the construction that goes with them are also placing stresses on the grouse.

We need to remember that humans are not the only inhabitants of this planet.

When is enough already?


If you can attend the hearing, please do. If you can’t but feel strongly about the loss of this lek email [email protected] and let them know you are opposed.

THURSDAY, August 14, 2014 @ 6:30 PM
Morgan County Courthouse – 48 West Young Street
Council Chambers
Yaryca Future Land Use Map Amendment: An application for an amendment to the Morgan County Future Land Use Map, redesignating approximately 2980.4 acres currently designated “Natural Resources and Recreation” to “Master Planned Community.”
All interested citizens are invited to attend and will have the opportunity to give written and oral comment. Prior to the hearing date written comments may be sent to:
Morgan County Planning Commission
P.O. Box 886, Morgan Utah, 84050
Additional information may be obtained by contacting
Bill Cobabe, AICP, Zoning Administrator
801-845-4059 or [email protected]


  1. Patty Chadwick August 2, 2014 at 7:37 am

    A beautiful, elegant bird…how stupid and sad to risk losing it!

  2. Elephant's Child August 1, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    We need to remember that we aren’t the only inhabitants of this planet or the most important. And sadly too many of us forget.
    Good luck. I will be cheering from the sidelines.

  3. Utahbooklover August 1, 2014 at 11:28 am

    Thanks for the nice images and info Mia. I agree the pressures on their habitat are ever growing due to our population growth. For example, here is a copy of an online ad:
    “If you are looking for more rural lifestyle, then Morgan, Utah is indeed the best place to consider. Morgan is a growing farm community and currently has a population of over 2,600 and just about 20-25 minutes away from the city of Ogden.”
    Businessmen always seem to get their way but I am feeling better and will try to make it to the courthouse to express my opposition on 14 August.

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