Saturday, March 6, 2010
Update: Sage Grouse Listing in Limbo (AGAIN)
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced yesterday sage grouse, although warranted by biologists for protection under the Endangered Species Act, will instead be put on hold.
Allowing individual states to manage sage grouse effectively puts the heat on special interests--livestock, oil and gas, developers, wind farms, etc.-- to take whatever steps necessary to preserve and enhance sage grouse habitat (sagebrush) and the birds' welfare as well.
The move as expected brought howls of rage from both sides. The public lands resource users/extractors of course want it all--no holds barred. Ditto the environmentalists whose main agenda seems to be to toss private interests off public lands period.
While I can't prove it none of the above appears to care much one way or the other about the grouse itself.
My own take (and I'm sure the Pointer Sisters agree) is for at least the foreseeable futre we get to continue hunting sage hens. Even more important is we get to chase sage hens in the off season--good practice for the girls and a good workout for us--trust me, beats hell outta hanging out the YMCA.
Selfish, you bet, but around here sage hens are in pretty good shape and the few birds we kill each season has been proven (biologically speaking no politics even) to have zero impact on the big picture...So there you have it.