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October 30, 2008

Contact:
    Sarah Beckwith 
    307-347-5207

Teamwork Results in Clean-up of BLM Rattlesnake Butte Area

BLM employees remove trash at Rattlesnake Butte.

BLM employees remove trash at Rattlesnake Butte.

Devon employees remove old pipe at Rattlesnake Butte.

Devon employees remove old pipe at Rattlesnake Butte.

Bill Skelton (L) of Devon Energy & Eve Warren of BLM's Worland Field Office.

Bill Skelton (L) of Devon Energy & Eve Warren of BLM's Worland Field Office.
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Worland Field Office, in partnership with Devon Energy, made a popular recreational area safer and cleaner during a workday on Oct. 8. Both BLM and Devon Energy staff cleaned-up old pipe and trash at Rattlesnake Butte, northwest of Worland, Wyo.

"I'm here to make this a safer place for the public," said Chet Wheeless, BLM Fishery Biologist. "Lots of people come here to walk and train their dogs. Some hunt for game birds and deer. No one wants to find wire or other potentially harmful scraps hiding in the grass," Wheeless continued.

"We like to work hand-in-hand with the BLM because we are both stewards of the environment," said Collin Burns of Devon Energy. Staff used heavy equipment to remove large sections of potentially hazardous pipe and cement. Others filled garbage bags with trash. In addition to a cleaner and safer recreational area, the workday also resulted in improved habitat for deer, birds, and other wildlife.

The area was originally surveyed in 1897 and used by Pure Oil Company as a campsite where workers and their families lived. A water well onsite was used for drinking water. Pure Oil Company sold the parcel and, after passing through many different hands, it is now under permit to Devon Energy. The BLM is keeping water in two ponds and plans to make a walking path between them, complete with restored riparian vegetation including native flowers, shrubs, and grasses.

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