News Release

For Release:  March 2, 2009   
Contact:  David Christy, (916) 985-4474
CA-CC-09-37

Sheep Are Back to Work on Fort Ord Public Lands BLM Encourages Visitors to Leash their Pets in Grasslands

More than 1,000 ewes and their lambs are back at work on the Bureau of Land Management’s Fort Ord Public Lands in Monterey County.

The grazing program is part of a cooperative strategy to improve rangeland conditions in this ecologically unique area. 

"The sheep grazing program at Fort Ord has a proven track record at reducing wildfire hazards, and stimulating native plant regeneration.  The sheep have also been effective in controlling invasive thistle populations," said Eric Morgan, BLM’s Fort Ord manager. The sheep will remain on the Fort Ord grasslands for the next four months.

With the return of the sheep herds, the BLM reminds visitors to the area to be careful around the sheep.  "Each year, between five to10 sheep die from injuries after being chased by aggressive dogs," explained Morgan.  During the next four months, the BLM strongly encourages visitors to leash their pets when near the sheep herds.  Visitors are also encouraged to avoid riding bicycles at high rates of speed on roads and trails when sheep are present.

For additional information about the grazing program, contact Morgan at (831) 394–8314, e-mail: Eric_Morgan@ca.blm.gov, or Bruce Delgado, BLM botanist, at Bruce_Delgado@ca.blm.gov.

-30-

Hollister Field Office - 20 Hamilton Court, Hollister, CA 95023