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Sage Grouse Initiative

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Current EQIP Funding Opportunities for Sage Grouse Habitat Conservation in Oregon

  • SGI Invasive Conifer Threat: Offers financial incentives to help private landowners remove invasive conifers such as Western Juniper and other conservation practices that promote rangeland health.

    View Screening and Ranking Questions (FY20)
  • SGI All Threats: Offers financial incentives to help private landowners perform a variety of conservation practices that address multiple resource concerns and threats on the range, including irrigation efficiencies, wildlife habitat, water quality/quantity, wildfire risk reduction, and more.

    View Screening and Ranking Questions (FY20)
  • SGI Invasive Annual Grass Threat, Baker-Keating:  Offers financial incentives to help private landowners in the Baker-Keating (Baker County) priority area address invasive annual grasses such as cheatgrass and medusahead to improve overall range health, increase plant diversity, and improve wildlife habitat.

    View Screening and Ranking Questions (FY20)

The Sage Grouse Initiative (SGI) formed in 2010 as a partnership of ranchers, agencies, universities, and nonprofit groups working together with a shared vision of achieving wildlife conservation through sustainable ranching. Thanks in large part to their hard work and commitment to restoration, in 2015 the US Interior Secretary announced the greater sage grouse is not warranted for protection under the Endangered Species Act. This marks not only a major success for SGI, but also a turning point in the approach to habitat restoration. A new strategy, known as SGI 2.0, builds on the success of SGI, while expanding its scope to addresses a wide variety of threats to rangeland health.

The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) works with willing ranchers to provide technical and financial incentives to implement targeted conservation practices on private lands. SGI conservation practices focus primarily on removing invasive plant species that have become threats to sagebrush ecosystems, such as juniper and annual grasses.

SGI covers 11 western states and targets 78 million acres of intact sagebrush harboring the highest number of birds. In Oregon, efforts focus in and around core habitats that support 90 percent of bird populations on 38 percent of the occupied range.

Sage grouse core and low density habitats in Oregon. The Sage Grouse Initiative prioritizes efforts in and around core areas





Sage-grouse core and low density habitats in Oregon. The Sage-Grouse Initiative prioritizes efforts in and around core areas. Enlarge Map

SGI Resources

Sage Grouse Success Stories in Oregon

Restoring Sagebrush Header Restoring Sagebrush Community with Modern Wildfire offsite link image    

Through the Sage Grouse Initiative (SGI), private landowners across Eastern Oregon are volunteering to perform proactive conservation treatments on their rangeland to promote healthy habitat for sage grouse and other wildlife.

See how landowners from Cornelia B. Ranch in Crook County, Oregon are enhancing rangeland health through SGI.


Oregon ranch enhances Mahogany Mountain habitat for the bird and the herd

Looking out across the Greeley Ranch from atop Oregon's Mahogany Mountain yields a grand view of sagebrush country, dotted with lava rock outcroppings, groves of aspen, and mountain mahogany.  The Owyhee Reservoir shimmers to the north of the ranch and the Steens Mountains jut up like desert sentinels to the southwest. This landscape is the heart of core habitat for greater sage grouse in Oregon.


Oregon ranchers raise cattle with a conservation vision

Mark and Patti Bennett own a small slice of heaven: an 8,000-acre working ranch near Unity, Oregon. Their home and red-trimmed barn look out on a series of meadows along Camp Creek that stretch for miles in the shadow of Bull Run Mountain. A few red angus cattle munch on grass nearby, and the smoke from their fireplace rises out of the chimney as we talk about how they manage their ranch.


Lars Santana
Rangeland Management Specialist
Phone: (541) 699-3194