Wednesday, June 21, 2017

California Commission Halts Hunting of Imperiled Sage Grouse

The California Fish and Game Commission today voted to prohibit sage grouse hunting during the 2017–2018 season, citing spring surveys that revealed alarming and continuing declines in all sage grouse populations in the state. The Center for Biological Diversity has for years urged the commission to end sage grouse hunting due to declining populations. “The commission did the right thing by prohibiting sage grouse hunting in California this season,” said Lisa Belenky, a senior attorney at the Center. “This is one small step in the right direction. But to truly save this iconic Western bird from extinction, we’ve got to protect its rapidly disappearing habitat.” The California Department of Fish and Game initially proposed allowing a range of hunting limits for each of four hunting zones in 2017. In June the department reversed its recommendation based a spring survey that showed alarming declines in male birds on their “leks,” or mating grounds, where they conduct their spectacular mating-dance rituals...more

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