The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has until September 30 to declare the greater sage grouse endangered. The grouse lives in 11 Western states, including in northwest Colorado. Its population has grown over the last two years, but conservationists believe the growth is temporary. Conservationists are trying to restore fields of sagebrush. While sagebrush isn’t as pretty as wildflowers, it’s important to the sage grouse’s survival. Sagebrush is also part of an ecosystem that houses many other plants and animals. Still, the sagebrush ecosystem is difficult to bring back. Scientists are hoping they can restore some sagebrush fields to help the greater sage grouse’s numbers grow.
Photo of a sage grouse in Colorado by Ron Knight/Flickr Creative Commons.