Sage grouse decline

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Early estimates from Wyoming’s 2021 sage grouse wings turned in by hunters indicate reproduction declined slightly in the last year.

Wyoming Game and Fish says wings from harvested chick and hen sage grouse are collected from hunters — primarily in central and southwest Wyoming — who voluntarily contribute wings by dropping them off at designated collection points during the hunting season.

In the last year, hunters deposited wings from 621 chicks and 750 hens in collection barrels. A preliminary analysis indicates Wyoming’s 2021 chick-to-hen ratio was 0.8 chicks/hen. It’s a decrease from two previous years where reproduction ratios held at 1.1 chicks/hen.



 

Based on these numbers, male lek attendance is expected to be lower this spring. Thirty-eight percent of the world’s sage grouse inhabit Wyoming and the state supports more than 1,700 known, occupied leks.

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