Sage Grouse Legislation a Threat to Wildlife, Sporting Traditions

Bill Allows Private Companies to Sell Sage Grouse Raised From Wild Eggs for a Profit

CHEYENNE, Wyo.  –  The Wyoming legislature once again introduced a bill extending the state’s experimental sage grouse farming venture. The bill would allow private companies to raise sage grouse from wild eggs to sell for a profit is a threat to wildlife, our sporting traditions and to the public lands that have defined Wyoming for generations.

“Gathering wild eggs to raise sage grouse in captivity for private financial gain cuts against decisions Wyoming leaders made long ago to prevent the privatization of Wyoming’s native wildlife. Further, releasing captive-bred birds into the wild can increase the risk of spreading disease, and can put additional stresses on wild populations,” said David Willms, senior director of Western wildlife and conservation at the National Wildlife Federation. “In short, this bill is bad for sage grouse, and runs counter to Wyoming values that our wildlife belongs to everyone.”

“SF 61 flies in the face of years worth of work that Wyoming stakeholders have done to ensure that the greater sage-grouse are not listed under the endangered species act. This bill allows for the continued collection of 250 wild eggs annually for the benefit of one private captive breeding program that, at its best, has had minimal success. It also introduces significant risks like diseases and disturbance to wild populations," said Jess Johnson, government affairs director for the Wyoming Wildlife Federation. "The work to keep the sage grouse from being listed will not be solved by a game farm, or private profit of a public resource, but by the significant work done on the ground by Wyoming stakeholders.” 

NWF Outdoors encourages individuals to reach out to their legislators to tell them to vote "No" on SF61.


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