Wind River-Bighorn Basin District Sage-Grouse Conservation InitiativesUpdated:06/2014

Since 2005, Marathon Oil Company has donated a total of $40,000 for habitat improvement projects to benefit Greater Sage-Grouse in the Bighorn Basin.

Cody Field Office

Heart Mountain Sage-Grouse Habitat Enhancements:

  • Reduced noxious weed infestations and prevent further spread of weeds to protect native rangeland and riparian communities.
  • Conducted prescribed burning and mowing to improve diversity in monotypic sagebrush.
  • Fenced water sources for wildlife use and provided additional watering sites.
  • Designed a grazing system to produced desired plant communities and ensure adequate forage remains.

YU Bench Habitat Enhancement:

  • Mowed 800 acres in long, linear strips to increase diversity, seeded forbs and constructed a drip irrigation system and fences to enhance herbaceous production.
  • Constructed two 1-acre fenced exclosures with water drip irrigation systems on YU bench to provide late summer green herbaceous forage for sage-grouse broods.

Fidelity Exploration & Production Company: 

In order to install overhead power to supply four new wells in the Silvertip Oil Field, discussion were held with BLM, Rocky Mountain Power, and Fidelity to discuss potential impacts to sage-grouse. To maintain sage-grouse connectivity within the area and prevent perches for raptors, the discussion turned from overhead to buried power. Due the estimated costs to bury the power for the four wells, $42,309.00 (which is almost 10-fold of the original overhead cost), Fidelity opted to bury power to the first well at a cost of $13,052.00 ($8,093.00 more than the overhead at $4,959.00) and re-route overhead power to supply the other three wells at a cost of $14,939.00. Total additional incurred costs to Fidelity to maintain sage-grouse habitat was $18,703.00.

Bighorn Basin Bentonite Companies (Bentonite Performance Minerals, American Colloid Company, M-I LLC, and WyoBen Inc.):

  • Provided a representative who worked on the Bighorn Basin Local Sage-Grouse Working Group. Starting in 2007, bentonite companies worked with Shell Valley Consulting to design and implement test plots to increase establishment of sagebrush on bentonite reclamation areas by planting sagebrush seedlings and using an experimental, inexpensive drip irrigation system(s).
  • Develop reservoirs, wetlands, or other water sources as part of reclamation of mined lands in areas with limited water. (ongoing)
  • Companies now include sagebrush seed in all revegetation mixes where appropriate.

Lander Field Office

Greater Sage-Grouse movement and habitat delineation study: 

This study is tied to the ongoing Gun Barrel Unit, Madden Deep Unit and Iron Horse Unit (GMI) environmental impact study (EIS) and was implemented by ConocoPhillips (Burlington Resources), Noble Energy, and EnCana Oil & Gas to study the movement of sage-grouse using radio telemetry and GPS technology. The study will provide information on sage-grouse year-long habitat use in an area currently being developed for natural gas. The study also includes field verification of the habitat being used by sage-grouse by measuring attributes of the habitat characteristics.

Government Draw vegetative treatment project: 

Devon Energy provided funding and support for vegetative treatments in an area of heavy sage-grouse use. The information obtained from the project is planned to be used to evaluate different vegetative treatment methods that would benefit sage-grouse habitat.

Oil and Gas reclamation study: 

ConocoPhillips (Burlington Resources) and Devon Energy are currently conducting studies on reclamation techniques with the goal of improving reclamation success which in turn would improve sage-grouse habitat. This project was initiated through the local sage-grouse working group. The studies are being conducted in low potential reclamation areas within the field office.

Lander Field Office  

1335 Main Street 
Lander, WY 82520
Phone: 307-332-8400
Fax: 307-332-2318

Worland Field Office

Grass Creek Basin habitat improvement project: 

Marathon Oil Company contributed money for a project to brush mow 10 - 20 percent of a 300-acre area of decadent sage-grouse habitat in the Grass Creek Basin. The project was designed to enhance sage brush regeneration with the goal of improving sage-grouse survival and increase sage-grouse numbers.

Fentan Road wildlife water well development project: 

Marathon Oil Company contributed money for a project to develop a water well for wildlife use. Funding was used for solar panels, pumps, and auxiliary equipment to enhance sage-grouse habitat use. The project also benefits antelope and mule deer in the Fentan Pass Road area.

Worland Field Office

101 South 23rd
Worland, WY 82401
Phone: 307-347-5100
Fax: 307-347-5228

Contact Wind River-Bighorn Basin District Sage-Grouse Conservation Initiatives

REMINDER: This listing is a free service of HabitatCAN.
Wind River-Bighorn Basin District Sage-Grouse Conservation Initiatives is not employed by or affiliated with the Habitat Conservation Assistance Network, and the Network does not certify or guarantee their services. The reader must perform their own due diligence and use their own judgment in the selection of any professional.

    Listed as:
  • Department of Interior - Bureau of Land Management

Contact Wind River-Bighorn Basin District Sage-Grouse Conservation Initiatives

DOI-BLM, Cody Field Office
1002 Blackburn Street
Cody, WY  82414
Phone: 307-578-5900
Fax: 307-578-5939

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Service Area

Services provided in:
  • Big Horn County, Wyoming
  • Park County, Wyoming
  • Washakie County, Wyoming

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