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  • Meet the Wildlife

    Ferruginous Hawk - The ferruginous hawk is a large, broad-winged hawk that nests in the grasslands of the western United States.
  • Meet the Wildlife

    Burrowing Owl - The burrowing owl is a small, ground-dwelling owl with long legs, a round head with an oval facial ruff, and no ear tufts.
  • Meet the Wildlife

    Sage-grouse - Most breeding occurs on strutting grounds (leks) during March and April.
  • Meet the Wildlife

    Mountain Plover - The mountain plover is a small bird approximately 8 inches in body length, similar in size and appearance to a killdeer.
  • Meet the Wildlife

    Black-tailed Prairie Dog - The black-tailed prairie dog is one of five species of prairie dog, all of which occur only in North America.
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Focus Areas

Prairie Dog, Wyoming

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2 Ecotypes - 8 Covered Species

Our conservation strategy focuses on 2 ecotypes and 8 species to maximize conservation benefit and to promote sustainable populations and habitats.

 

Shortgrass species assemblage:

  • Black-tailed prairie dogs
  • Mountain plover
  • Burrowing owl
  • Ferruginous hawk
 

Sagebrush obligate assemblage:

  • Greater sage-grouse
  • Sage sparrow
  • Brewer’s sparrow
  • Sage thrasher
 
 

What's New

Conservation Strategy Update

Sage Grouse, Wyoming

  • The Association submitted the final draft of the conservation Strategy (integrated CCAA/CCA/CA) to the US Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) on July 23, 2013.
  • An Interagency Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was finalized May 16, 2014 by the Association, FWS, BLM, Forest Service, and Wyoming Game & Fish Department.  This MOU defines the responsibilities of each party and establishes a Conservation Advisory Committee to advise the Association Board.
  • The Strategy is currently undergoing final review by FWS.  This review should be completed by mid-June, 2014.
  • The Association has hired a third party contractor to complete the necessary Environmental Assessment (EA) for the Strategy under the direction of FWS.  FWS, along with BLM and Forest Service as cooperating agencies, are expected to finish review of the draft EA by June 30, 2014.
  • Members are working with the Association to assess threats and develop appropriate conservation measures.

The Next Steps

  • Following signing of the Interagency MOU, the Association is in the process of inviting qualified professionals to serve on the Conservation Advisory Committee.
  • Once final reviews of the Environmental Assessment are complete, it will be made available for public comment.
  • We anticipate signing of the Strategy in the third quarter of 2014.

Coverage Area

Thunder Basin Grasslands Area MapThe Thunder Basin Grasslands Prairie Ecosystem Association coverage area spans 10.8 million acres across Campbell, Converse, Crook, Niobrara, and Weston counties in northeastern Wyoming.

Current members of the Association own over 450,000 acres of land within this mixed ownership landscape.  Other lands include Thunder Basin National Grasslands administered by the USDA Forest Service through three local grazing associations, Bureau of Land Management lands, state lands, and additional private lands not currently in the membership of the Association.

Grasslands Mini Gallery