The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) has determined that the greater sage-grouse population in Nevada and California does not require the protection of the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
The announcement came from the Department of the Interior Secretary Sally Jewell while in Reno, Nev., with Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval and John Laird, secretary of the California Natural Resources Agency.
‘Our biologists have determined that this population no longer needs ESA protection,’ says Jewell. ‘What's more, the collaborative, science-based efforts in Nevada and California are proof that we can conserve sagebrush habitat across the West while we encourage sustainable economic development.’
The Bi-State Distinct Population Segment (DPS) straddles the California-Nevada border, where between 2,500 and 9,000 of the ground-dwelling birds inhabit about 4.5 million acres of high-desert sagebrush. In October 2013, the FWS proposed listing the Bi-State DPS as threatened, but now it has withdrawn the proposal.