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Posted by: Dennis Hinkamp on Feb 3, 2014

Gov. Herbert to Open 2014 Utah Sage-grouse Summit

 

Writers: Julene Reese, 435-797-0810, Mary-Ann Muffoletto, 435-797-3517

Contact: Terry Messmer, 435-797-3975, terry.messmer@usu.edu

 

Gov. Herbert to Open 2014 Utah Sage-grouse Summit

 

            The Utah State University-organized 2014 Utah Sage-grouse Summit is held Feb. 18 and 19 in Salt Lake City with Utah Gov. Gary Herbert as opening speaker.

            The summit celebrates two decades of work by community-based working groups throughout the state and will facilitate an exchange of ideas and information between local working group members, private, state and federal partners to enhance community sustainability and greater sage-grouse conservation. Greater sage-grouse occur in 11 western states, including Utah, and have been identified as a candidate species for protection listing under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

            The two-day summit is held at the Utah Department of Natural Resources Auditorium at 1594 West North Temple. Conference participation is free, but registration is required by Feb. 7 and is limited. Registration information, along with a summit agenda, is available at Utah’s Community-Based Conservation Program website. A streaming webinar option is available for those who are not able to attend the event in Salt Lake City. On Feb. 18, those interested may join the meeting any time from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. MST at https://connect.usu.edu/sgsday1/. On Feb. 19, participants may join any time from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. MST at https://connect.usu.edu/sgsday2/. Those who have never attended an Adobe Connect meeting can test their connection before the meeting at

https://connect.usu.edu/common/help/en/support/meeting_test.htm. Registration is not required for the streaming webinars.

            "The summit is a precursor and could provide a working template for the National Forum on Sage-grouse Local Working Groups which will also be held on Salt Lake City this November," said Terry Messmer, Quinney Professor for Wildlife Conflict Management in USU’s Department of Wildland Resources, USU Extension wildlife specialist and summit coordinator. "Currently, there remains a lot of uncertainty and thus concern about what is happening both nationally and regionally regarding the status of this species and the listing process. Because of the distribution of this landscape species across the West, this situation is unprecedented in the history of the ESA. We canvased our local working group participants to find their information needs and concerns. Working with our partners, we built the Summit agenda to address them."

            Speakers include researchers from USU and Brigham Young University, as well as representatives from Utah’s Local Working Groups and federal, state and private natural resource agencies.

            Sponsors for the event are Utah Public Lands Policy Coordination Office, Deseret Land and Livestock, Utah Department of Natural Resources, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, Bureau of Land Management, Natural Resources Conservation Service, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, USU Extension, USU Quinney College of Natural Resources, the Jack H. Berryman Institute at USU and the Western Rural Development Center.

            For further information on the summit, contact Messmer at 435-797-3975 or terry.messmer@usu.edu.

 

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