Sunday, 19 August 2012 15:45

Wildlife Officials Dragging Feet on Sage Grouse Problem Featured

Written by Hunter's Alert
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Reprinted from the Las Vegas Review Journal - 

To the editor:

Your April 13 editorial, "A 'stupid bird'?," did not state directly who or what was responsible for the decline of the sage grouse. I will do that.

From July 1989 to June 1991, the Nevada Department of Wildlife conducted a survey of sage grouse production and mortality. Fourteen hundred eggs were placed in 200 simulated sage grouse nests, with seven eggs per nest. This was during the 15-day period when sage hens lay their eggs.

At the completion of the 15 days, all 1,400 eggs were destroyed at both study areas. Ravens were believed to be the chief nest predator.

During the 1991 legislative session, a bill was introduced to do raven control with aircraft. State wildlife officials did not show up to testify about their own survey.

Department of Wildlife officials knew this was a problem more than two decades ago and have done nothing on their own to correct this situation. Quite the contrary, they have fought against raven control. A sportsmen's group, Nevada Alliance 4 Wildlife, asked for and received $100,000 of Heritage Fund money for raven control. Department of Wildlife Director Ken Mayer fought against this proposal all the way. Does this sound like a director who wants to do something abut this serious problem?

Mr. Mayer was fired by then-Gov. Jim Gibbons for not doing anything about the declining deer numbers. By fighting the sage grouse proposals, Mr. Mayer and his predecessors have shown a lack of interest in solving the sage grouse problem, leaving the state facing serious repercussions if this bird is listed as threatened or endangered.

Cecil Fredi

Las Vegas

From the editor:  The writer is president of Hunter's Alert!

 

Last modified on Sunday, 19 August 2012 17:32
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