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One of the largest bibliographies of sage grouse literature available online

Description

The greater sage-grouse, a candidate species for listing under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1973 has experienced population declines across its range in the sagebrush steppe ecosystems of western North America. Sage-grouse now occupy only 56% of their pre-settlement range, though they still occur in 11 western states and 2 Canadian provinces.

latest article added on August 2013

ArticleFirst AuthorPublished
Participatory modeling of endangered wildlife systems: Simulating the sage-grouse and land use in Central WashingtonBeall, Allyson2008

Participatory modeling of endangered wildlife systems: Simulating the sage-grouse and land use in Central Washington

Keywords

Participatory modeling; Wildlife modeling; Sage-grouse; System dynamics; Endangered species

Abstract

The Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) occupies the sage brush habitats of Western North America. Large population declines in the last several decades have made it a candidate for possible listing under the Endangered Species Act. Listing was recently avoided in part because local working groups are developing long-range management plans in conjunction with federal and local agencies. The Foster Creek Conservation District, a working group in Douglas County, Washington, saw the potential for system dynamics to synthesize known sage-grouse dynamics and local land use patterns to support development of their Habitat Conservation Plan and subsequent land management decisions. This case study highlights the integration of science, local knowledge and social concerns into a participatory process that uses system dynamics as a forum for the exploration of the impacts of land management decisions upon the sage-grouse population and the landowners of Douglas County, Washington. (C) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Authors

Beall, Allyson; Zeoli, Len

Year Published

2008

Publication

Ecological Economics

Locations
DOI

10.1016/j.ecolecon.2008.08.019

A pressure-operated drop net for capturing Greater Sage-GrouseBush, Krista L.2008

A pressure-operated drop net for capturing Greater Sage-Grouse

Keywords

capture; drop net; greater Sage-Grouse; pressure operated; Sage-Grouse

Abstract

A pressure-operated drop net was developed to capture endangered Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in Alberta, Canada. A drop net was developed because other capture methods, such as night lighting and walk-in traps, have largely been unsuccessful in Alberta, and rocket netting was too dangerous to be used with an endangered population. Nets (one black and one gray) were used to capture 13 birds (12 males and 1 female) in six attempts. Nets dropped quickly (about 1 s) and quietly and captured all birds under the net. More birds (N = 12) were captured using a gray net than a black net, probably because it was less conspicuous. The presence of a drop net on the lek did not alter the behavior of the birds at the lek or influence lek attendance. The cost of a net, including all supplies, tools, and equipment needed, was $790 US ($900 CAN). This pressure-operated drop net system should prove effective for capturing other lekking species and other ground-dwelling birds that will respond to baiting.

Authors

Bush, Krista L.

Year Published

2008

Publication

Journal of Field Ornithology

Locations
DOI

10.1111/j.1557-9263.2008.00146.x

Predators of Greater Sage-Grouse nests identified by video monitoringCoates, Peter S.2008

Predators of Greater Sage-Grouse nests identified by video monitoring

Keywords

American badger; camera; Centrocercus urophasianus; Common Raven; Greater Sage-Grouse; ground squirrel; nest predation; Nevada; video monitoring

Abstract

Nest predation is the primary cause of nest failure for Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), but the identity of their nest predators is often uncertain. Confirming the identity of these predators may be useful in enhancing management strategies designed to increase nest success. From 2002 to 2005, we monitored 87 Greater Sage-Grouse nests (camera, N = 55; no camera, N = 32) in northeastern Nevada and south-central Idaho and identified predators at 17 nests, with Common Ravens (Corvus corax) preying on eggs at 10 nests and American badgers (Taxidea taxis) at seven. Rodents were frequently observed at grouse nests, but did not prey on grouse eggs. Because sign left by ravens and badgers was often indistinguishable following nest predation, identifying nest predators based on egg removal, the presence of egg shells, or other sign was not possible. Most predation occurred when females were on nests. Active nest defense by grouse was rare and always unsuccessful. Continuous video monitoring of Sage-Grouse nests permitted unambiguous identification of nest predators. Additional monitoring studies could help improve our understanding of the causes of Sage-Grouse nest failure in the face of land-use changes in the Intermountain West.

Authors

Coates, Peter S.; Connelly, John W.; Delehanty, David J.

Year Published

2008

Publication

Journal of Field Ornithology

Locations
DOI

10.1111/j.1557-9263.2008.00189.x

EFFECTS OF ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS ON INCUBATION PATTERNS OF GREATER SAGE-GROUSECoates, Peter S.2008

EFFECTS OF ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS ON INCUBATION PATTERNS OF GREATER SAGE-GROUSE

Keywords

Centrocercus urophasianus, Common Raven, Greater Sage-Grouse, incubation, nest, predation, video.

Abstract

Birds in which only one sex incubates the eggs are often faced with a direct conflict between foraging to meet metabolic needs and incubation. Knowledge of environmental and ecological factors that shape life-history strategies of incubation is limited. We used continuous videography to make precise measurements of female Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) incubation constancy (percentage of time spent at the nest in a 24-hour period) and recess duration. We used an information-theoretic approach to evaluate incubation patterns in relation to grouse age, timing of incubation, raven abundance, microhabitat, weather, and food availability. Overall, sage-grouse females showed an incubation constancy of 96% and a distinctive bimodal distribution of brief incubation recesses that peaked at sunset and 30 min prior to sunrise. Grouse typically returned to their nests during low light conditions. Incubation constancy of yearlings was lower than that of adults, particularly in the later stages of incubation. Yearlings spent more time away from nests later in the morning and earlier in the evening compared to adults. Video images revealed that nearly all predation events by Common Ravens (Corvus corax), the most frequently recorded predator at sage-grouse nests, took place during mornings and evenings after sunrise and before sunset, respectively. These were the times of the day when sage-grouse typically returned from incubation recesses. Recess duration was negatively related to raven abundance. We found evidence that incubation constancy increased with greater visual obstruction, usually from vegetation, of nests. An understanding of how incubation patterns relate to environmental factors will help managers make decisions aimed at increasing productivity through successful incubation.

Authors

Coates, Peter S.; Delehanty, David J.

Year Published

2008

Publication

The Condor: Ornithological Applications

Locations
DOI

10.1525/cond.2008.8579

ACCOUNTING FOR FITNESS: COMBINING SURVIVAL AND SELECTION WHEN ASSESSING WILDLIFE-HABITAT RELATIONSHIPSAldridge, Cameron L.2008

ACCOUNTING FOR FITNESS: COMBINING SURVIVAL AND SELECTION WHEN ASSESSING WILDLIFE-HABITAT RELATIONSHIPS

Keywords

fitness, greater sage-grouse, habitat, occurrence, persistence, sagebrush,selection, survival

Abstract

Assessing the viability of a Population requires understanding of the resources used by animals to determine how those resources affect long-term population persistence. To understand the true importance of resources, one must consider both selection (where a Species Occurs) and fitness (reproduction and survival) associated with the use of those resources. Failure to do so may result in incorrect assessments of habitat quality and inappropriate management activities. We illustrate the importance of considering both Occurrence and fitness metrics when assessing habitat requirements for the endangered greater sage-rouse in Alberta, Canada. This population is experiencing low recruitment, so we assess resource use during the brood-rearing period to identify management priorities. First, we develop logistic regression occurrence models fitted with habitat covariates. Second, we use proportional hazard survival analysis to assess chick survival (fitness component) associated with habitat and climatic covariates. Sage-grouse show strong selection for sagebrush cover at both patch (smaller) and area (larger) spatial scales, and weak selection for forbs at the patch scale only. Drought conditions based on an index combining growing degree days and spring precipitation strongly reduced chick survival. While hens selected for taller grass and more sagebrush cover, only taller grass cover also enhanced chick Survival. We show that sage-grouse may not recognize all ecological cues that enhance chick survival. Management activities targeted at providing habitats that sage-grouse are likely to use in addition to those that enhance survival are most likely to ensure the long-term viability of this population. Our techniques account for both occurrence and fitness in habitat quality assessments and, in general, the approach should be applicable to other species or ecosystems.

Authors

Aldridge, Cameron L.; Boyce, Mark S.

Year Published

2008

Publication

Israel Journal of Ecology & Evolution

Locations
DOI

10.1560/IJEE.54.3-4.389

Temporal variation in diet and nutrition of preincubating greater sage-grouseGregg, Michael A.2008

Temporal variation in diet and nutrition of preincubating greater sage-grouse

Keywords

calcium, Centrocercus urophasianus, crude protein, forb, phosphorus, reproduction

Abstract

Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) habitat management involves vegetation manipulations to increase or decrease specific habitat components. For sage-grouse habitat management to be most effective, all understanding of the functional response of sage-grouse to changes in resource availability is critical. We investigated temporal variation in diet composition and nutrient content (crude protein, calcium, and phosphorus) of foods consumed by preincubating female sage-grouse relative to food supply and age of hen. We collected 86 preincubating female greater sage-grouse at foraging areas during early (18-31 March) and late (1-12 April) preincubation periods during 2002-2003. Females consumed 22 food types including low sagebrush (Artemisia arbuscula Nutt.), big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata Nutt.), 15 forb species, 2 insect taxa, sagebrush galls, moss, and a trace amount of unidentified grasses. Low sagebrush was the most common food item, but forbs were found in 89% of the crops and composed 30.1% aggregate dry mass (ADM) of the diet. ADM and species composition of female diets were highly variable between collection periods and years, and coincided with temporal variation in forb availability. Adult females consumed more forbs and less low sagebrush compared to yearling females. Because of higher levels of crude protein, calcium, and phosphorus, forbs were important diet components in comparison with low sagebrush, which had the lowest nutrient content of all foods consumed. Our results indicate that increased forb abundance in areas used by female sage-grouse prior to nesting would increase their forb consumption and nutritional status for reproduction. We recommend that managers should emphasize delineation of habitats used by preincubating sage-grouse and evaluate the need for enhancing forb abundance and diversity.

Authors

Gregg, Michael A.; Barnett, Jenny K.; Crawford, John A.

Year Published

2008

Publication

Rangeland Ecology & Management

Locations
DOI

10.2111/08-037.1

Survival, movements, and reproduction of translocated greater sage-grouse in Strawberry Valley, UtahBaxter, Rick J.2008

Survival, movements, and reproduction of translocated greater sage-grouse in Strawberry Valley, Utah

Keywords

Centrocercus urophasianus; clutch size; dispersal; flocking; greater sage-grouse; nest success; reproductive output; survival; translocation

Abstract

Translocations of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) have been attempted in 7 states and one Canadian province with very little success. To recover a small remnant population and test the efficacy of sage-grouse translocations, we captured and transported 137 adult female sage-grouse from 2 source populations to a release site in Strawberry Valley, Utah, USA, during March-April 2003-2005. The resident population of sage-grouse in Strawberry Valey was approximately 150 breeding birds prior to the release. We radiomarked each female and documented survival, movements, reproductive effort, flocking with resident grouse, and lek attendance. We used Program MARK to calculate annual survival of translocated females in the first year after release, which averaged 0.60 (95% CI = 0.515-0.681). Movements of translocated females were within current and historic sage-grouse habitat in Strawberry Valley, and we detected no grouse outside of the study area. Nesting propensity for first (newly translocated) and second (surviving) year females was 39% and 73%, respectively. Observed nest success of all translocated females during the study was 67%. By the end of their first year in Strawberry Valley, 100% of the living translocated sage-grouse were in flocks with resident sage-grouse. The translocated grouse attended the same lek as the birds with which they were grouped. In 2006, the peak male count for the only remaining active lek in Strawberry Valley was almost 4 times (135 M) the 6-year pretranslocation (1998-2003) average peak attendance of 36 males (range 24-50 M). Translocations can be an effective management tool to increase small populations of greater sage-grouse when conducted during the breeding season and before target populations have been extirpated.

Authors

Baxter, Rick J.; Flinders, Jerran T.; Mitchell, Dean L.

Year Published

2008

Publication

Journal of Wildlife Management

Locations
DOI

10.2193/2006-402

Greater sage-grouse winter habitat selection and energy developmentDoherty, Kevin E.2008

Greater sage-grouse winter habitat selection and energy development

Keywords

Centrocercus urophasianus, coal-bed natural gas, energy development, greater sage-grouse, habitat, land-use

Abstract

Recent energy development has resulted in rapid and large-scale changes to western shrub-steppe ecosystems without a complete understanding of its potential impacts on wildlife populations. We modeled winter habitat use by female greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in the Powder River Basin (PRB) of Wyoming and Montana, USA, to 1) identify landscape features that influenced sage-grouse habitat selection, 2) assess the scale at which selection occurred, 3) spatially depict winter habitat quality in a Geographic Information System, and 4) assess the effect of coal-bed natural gas (CBNG) development on winter habitat selection. We developed a model of winter habitat selection based on 435 aerial relocations of 200 radiomarked female sage-grouse obtained during the winters of 2005 and 2006. Percent sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) cover on the landscape was an important predictor of use by sage-grouse in winter. The strength of habitat selection between sage-grouse and sagebrush was strongest at a 4-km(2) scale. Sage-grouse avoided coniferous habitats at a 0.65-km(2) scale and riparian areas at a 4-km(2) scale. A toughness index showed that sage-grouse selected gentle topography in winter. After controlling for vegetation and topography, the addition of a variable that quantified the density of CBNG wells within 4 km(2) improved model fit by 6.66 Akaike's Information Criterion points (Akaike wt = 0.965). The odds ratio for each additional well in a 4-km(2) area (0.877; 95% CI = 0.834-0.923) indicated that sage-grouse avoid CBNG development in otherwise suitable winter habitat. Sage-grouse were 1.3 times more likely to occupy sagebrush habitats that lacked CBNG wells within a 4-km(2) area, compared to those that had the maximum density of 12.3 wells per 4 km(2) allowed on federal lands. We validated the model with 74 locations from 74 radiomarked individuals obtained during the winters of 2004 and 2007. This winter habitat model based on vegetation, topography, and CBNG avoidance was highly predictive (validation R-2 = 0.984). Our spatially explicit model can be used to identify areas that provide the best remaining habitat for wintering sage-grouse in the PRB to mitigate impacts of energy development.

Authors

Doherty, Kevin E.; Naugle, David E.; Walker, Brett L.; Graham, Jon M.

Year Published

2008

Publication

Journal of Wildlife Management

Locations
DOI

10.2193/2006-454

Productivity estimates from upland bird harvests: Estimating variance and necessary sample sizesHagen, Christian A.2008

Productivity estimates from upland bird harvests: Estimating variance and necessary sample sizes

Keywords

age ratios, Centrocercus urophasianus, confidence intervals, greater sage-grouse, Oregon, productivity, sample size, variance, wing-bee

Abstract

Harvest of upland game birds in concert with sampling of age ratios from wings can yield important biological information about populations. Although estimates of productivity are commonly produced, they are often not accompanied by a measure of variance. Thus, we developed standard error estimates for sample productivity ratios, compared 4 methods for creating confidence intervals for population productivity ratios, and developed a test and the corresponding sample size requirements for comparing 2 population productivity ratios. We applied these techniques to greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) wing-data collected in Oregon, USA (1993-2005). Computer simulations indicated that backtransforming the Wilson's score interval on the proportion of immatures in the sample results in the most reliable confidence intervals among the methods considered. We recommend to managers measuring conservation action outcomes with productivity ratios to consider the appropriate sample sizes for the spatial and temporal scale of their monitoring programs.

Authors

Hagen, Christian A.; Loughin, Thomas M.

Year Published

2008

Publication

Journal of Wildlife Management

Locations
DOI

10.2193/2007-390

Liver metal concentrations in Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus)Dailey, Rebecca N.2008

Liver metal concentrations in Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus)

Keywords

Centrocercus urophasianus, ICP-MS, liver, metals, sage-grouse

Abstract

Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) are a species of concern due to shrinking populations associated with habitat fragmentation and loss. Baseline health parameters for this species are limited or lacking, especially with regard to tissue metal concentrations. To obtain a range of tissue metal concentrations, livers were collected from 71 Greater Sage-grouse from Wyoming and Montana. Mean SE metal concentrations (mg/kg wet weight) in liver were determined for vanadium (V) (0.12 +/- 0.01), chromium (Cr) (0.50 +/- 0.02), manganese (Mn) (2.68 +/- 0.11), iron (Fe) (1,019 +/- 103), nickel (Ni) (0.40 +/- 0.04), cobalt (Co) (0.08 +/- 0.02), copper (Cu) (6.43 +/- 0.40), mercury (Hg) (0.30 +/- 0.09), selenium (Se) (1.45 +/- 0.64), zinc (Zn) (59.2 +/- 4.70), molybdenum (Mo) (0.93 +/- 0.07), cadmium (Cd) (1.44 +/- 0.14), barium (Ba) (0.20 +/- 0.03), and lead (Pb) (0.17 +/- 0.03). In addition to providing baseline data, metal concentrations were compared between sex, age (juvenile/adult), and West Nile virus (WNv) groups (positive/negative). Adult birds had higher concentrations of Ni and Cd compared to juveniles. In addition, Zn and Cu concentrations were significantly elevated in WNv-positive birds.

Authors

Dailey, Rebecca N.; Raisbeck, Merl F.; Slemion, Roger S.; Cornish, Todd E.

Year Published

2008

Publication

Journal of Wildlife Diseases

Locations

Recent Articles

The Secret Sex Lives of Sage-Grouse: Multiple Paternity and Intraspecific Nest Parasitism Revealed Through Genetic Analysis

by Bird, Krista, Aldridge, Cameron, Carpenter, Jennifer, Paszkowski, Cynthia, Boyce, Mark and Coltman, David

In lek-based mating systems only a few males are expected to obtain the majority of matings in a single breeding season and multiple mating is believed to be rare. We used 13 microsatellites to genotype greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) samples from 604 adults and 1206 offspring from 191 clutches (1999-2006) from Alberta, Canada, to determine paternity and polygamy (males and fema...

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Greater Sage-Grouse and Severe Winter Conditions: Identifying Habitat for Conservation

by Dzialak, Matthew, Webb, Stephen, Harju, Seth, Olson, Chad, Winstead, Jeffrey and Hayden Wing, Larry

d Developing sustainable rangeland management strategies requires solution-driven research that addresses ecological issues within the context of regionally important socioeconomic concerns. A key sustainability issue in many regions of the world is conserving habitat that buffers animal populations from climatic variability, including seasonal deviation from long-term precipitation or temperat...

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Using Spatial Statistics and Point-Pattern Simulations to Assess the Spatial Dependency Between Greater Sage-Grouse and Anthropogenic Features

by Gillan, Jeffrey K., Strand, Eva K., Karl, Jason W., Reese, Kerry P. and Laninga, Tamara

The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter, sage-grouse), a candidate species for listing under the Endangered Species Act, has experienced population declines across its range in the sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) steppe ecosystems of western North America. One factor contributing to the loss of habitat is the expanding human population with associated development and infrast...

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