Over 20 volunteers joined employees from the Humboldt-Toiyable National Forest at Sweetwater Flats to clear pinon pine, juniper seedlings and small trees from bi-state sage grouse breeding and nesting habitats.

“We worked in a unit that had been treated around 10 years ago, and it was a good time to go back to remove new confer growth,” said Monique Nelson, Sage-Grouse Coordinator for the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest. “Pinon and juniper grow above the low sagebrush providing perches for predators like ravens and hawks that watch for sage grouse moving in the sagebrush. Sage grouse nestlings and eggs are particularly vulnerable to these predators.”

The bi-state sage grouse habitat can be found in Douglas, Esmeralda, Lyon and Mineral Counties and also in three California counties.

About 426,000 acres of the sage grouse habitat is found in lands managed by the U.S. Forest Service with another 280,000 on Bureau of Land Management lands.

The bi-state sage grouse is not warranted for listing under the Endangered Species Act due to conservation efforts of the Bi-State Local Area Working Group and the Bi-State Action Plan.