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Funded Projects - Wildlife Mitigation

Mesa Sagebrush Fertilization Project

The PAPO and WGFD will implement a sagebrush fertilization project on approximately 3,000 acres of sagebrush habitat within mule deer winter range on the Pinedale Anticline Project Area (PAPA). Fertilization is intended to offset direct and indirect habitat losses on and adjacent to natural gas development sites in the PAPA by increasing sagebrush production, enhancing available winter forage, and potentially increasing palatability and nutrient quality. Sagebrush and herbaceous production will be closely monitored on an annual basis during the next several years to determine the success of the treatment. If proven successful, future fertilization projects within mule deer winter range may be considered.

  • NEPA Documents – EA/FONSI/DR
  • Project Status: 1,000 acres of sagebrush will be fertilized fall 2011, remaining 2,000 acres may be treated fall 2012 pending monitoring results
  • Total Project Cost: $215,700
  • PAPO Funded: $215,700
  • Total Project Acres: 3,090
  • Partners/Cooperators
    • BLM Pinedale Field Office
    • Wyoming Game and Fish Department

Mesa Mule Deer Winter Habitat Improvement Project

Mesa Mule Deer Winter Habitat Project Location map.
Mesa Fertilization Project location map.
Mesa overview.
mule deer.
mule deer and drill rig.
The PAPO and the WGFD implemented a rangeland fertilization project on 468 acres on the Pinedale Anticline to offset natural gas development impacts to the wintering mule deer and year round Greater Sage-grouse populations. Sagebrush leaders and herbaceous production will be closely monitored on an annual basis during the next several years to determine the success of the treatment. Future projects or phases are being
considered and identified pending the success of the project based on the monitoring results.
  • NEPA Documents
  • Project Status: Completed with annual monitring for five years
  • Total Project Cost: $46,000
  • PAPO Funded: $46,000
  • Total Project Acres: 600
  • Partners/Cooperators
    • BLM Pinedale Field Office
    • Wyoming Game and Fish Department
urea bag.   30 tons of urea.
Each of these bags held approximately 450 pounds of urea (fertilizer).   Approximately 30 tons of fertilizer was applied to achieve the 40 and 80 pound rates on approximately 468 acres.
loading urea.   loading urea.
The “Bobcat” was used to load the hopper or spreader that the helicopter used.   The “Bobcat” was used to load the hopper or spreader that the helicopter used.
spreading urea.   spreading urea.
Over 100 trips were made to complete the project.   Broadcasting the fertilizer.

Sommers-Grindstone Conservation Easement Project

Sommers-Grindstone Project location map.
historic bridge.
Sommers-Grindstone is a multi-component project designed to protect and improve habitat for a variety of wildlife species, including pronghorn and sage-grouse. The project components include:
  1. Acquisition of a conservation easement on approximately 7,600 acres of private land.
  2. Acquisition and development of public fishing access for foot and boat travel on approximately 4.5 miles of the Green River.
  3. Conveyance of mineral rights to the Wyoming Game and Fish Department and possibly other entities for protection.
  4. Development of a conservation agreement to protect existing sagebrush communities and provide for the modification of fences.

Benefits to agriculture include capital infusion into the livestock operation, provides financial freedom to pass the ranch down to a younger generation of ranchers and preserves the ranch in a state that will allow ranching and wildlife to remain on the landscape.

This project was co-funded with JIO funds.

  • Project Status: Conservation easement completed
  • Total Project Cost: $22,000,000
  • PAPO Funded: $6,000,000 USQ ($90,000 for each USQ contributor) to be credited toward
    each USQ contributor’s Dec. 2009 payment into the PAPO Mitigation Fund
  • Cooperator/Partner Funded: $17,000,000
  • Total Project Acres: 19,000 (including easement)
  • Partners/Cooperators
    • Albert Sommers & Maugerite Miller - Landowners
    • Wyoming Wildlife & Natural Resource Trust
    • Doris Duke Foundation
    • Wyoming Game & Fish Department
    • Others
Gap. aerial view of the Sommers Ranch.
Sommers overview.
BLM Wyoming   |   WY Department of Agriculture   |   WY Department of Environmental Quality   |   WY Department of Game & Fish
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