The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced $200 million in new funding to support another four years of sage-grouse habitat improvements through the federal farm bill. This comes as the USDA simultaneously released a report detailing the scope of previous conservation efforts under the Natural Resource Conservation Service's (NRCS) Sage Grouse Initiative, which launched in 2010.
“The USDA is doubling down on its investment in sage-grouse conservation. Thanks to NRCS and the Sage Grouse Initiative, they have an impressive track record of working with landowners to achieve sage-grouse health. Their previous investment engaged more than 1,000 ranchers to conserve 4.4 million acres of bird habitat, all while maintaining vibrant working landscapes," Eric Holst, Environmental Defense Fund.
“We can’t expect to help the greater sage-grouse without helping landowners. That’s why we are also working to make landowners a part of the sage-grouse solution. Through collaborative design, we are building habitat exchanges that enlist farmers and ranchers in conservation at an unprecedented scale and pace, in hopes of securing a positive future for the greater sage-grouse and the western economy.”