The Greater Sage-Grouse Story: Do We Have It Right?

Cronin, Matthew A.
Society for Range Management
Publication Year: 
On the Ground• Greater sage-grouse were found to be threatenedor endangered with extinction in a preliminaryassessment in 2010, with a final decision on anEndangered Species Act (ESA) listing due in 2015.• ESA criteria regarding endangered status (indanger of extinction), threatened status (likely tobecome in danger of extinction), the foreseeablefuture (in which a species will become in danger ofextinction), and a significant portion of a speciesrange (without which a species will be in danger ofextinction) are not definitive, rely on predictions, andare all concerned with species extinction, not simplypopulation declines.• The 2010 ESA determination for sage-grouse relieson observations of declining populations, predictionsfrom models with uncertain assumptions, incompletepopulation data, and anticipated habitat changes.Prediction of species extinction from this informationcan be considered speculation, and insufficient for anESA listing.• Wildlife management without the encumbrances ofthe ESA and its associated litigation and regulationcan be used to maintain and enhance species thatare not in immediate danger of extinction, such assage-grouse.Keywords: Greater sage grouse, Centrocercusurophasianus, extinction, endangered species act,predictive models.
Document Type: 
Journal Issue/Article
Society for Range Management

Rangelands, a publication of the Society for Range Management, serves as a forum for the presentation and discussion of facts, ideas, and philosophies pertaining to the study, management, and use of rangelands. The journal features scientific and historical articles as well as Society news. It provides readers with scientifically accurate information in a user-friendly format, placed in context of the world we live in today. Rangelands is a practical (non-technical) counterpart of Rangeland Ecology & Management (formerly the Journal of Range Management). The Global Rangelands collection includes articles from Rangelands up to 3 years from the current year. Access to more recent content is available by subscription from BioOne and the Society for Range Management and may also be available at your local university library. 
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