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Ely District Office
Release Date: 08/28/12
Contacts: Chris Hanefeld , 775-289-1842 ,
News Release No. ELY 2012-28

BLM Seeks Public Comment on Desert Tortoise Translocation

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Southern Nevada and Ely Districts are seeking the public’s comments on a draft environmental assessment (EA) addressing the translocation of desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) from the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center to 17 wilderness areas, five wilderness study areas and other non-wilderness lands within the districts.  The deadline to provide comment is Friday, Sept. 14, 2012.


The BLM has scheduled two public comment meetings in Lincoln County, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.  Dates and locations are:

  • Wednesday, Sept. 5, BLM Ely District, Caliente Field Office, 1400 Front Street, Caliente
  • Thursday, Sept. 6, Lincoln County Alamo Annex Building, 121 Joshua Tree Street, Alamo

The EA evaluates impacts associated with translocating desert tortoise to potential recipient areas within Clark, southern Nye, and southern Lincoln Counties, Nevada.  Potential areas will allow for more flexibility and options in addition to the ongoing use of the Large Scale Translocation Site located near Jean, Nevada. 


Translocation includes the moving of tortoises from the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center (located at the southern edge of the Las Vegas Valley) back into the wild.  Translocated tortoises have the potential to play an important role in recovery of the species through population augmentation, monitoring, research, and other recovery actions.


The draft EA is available on the BLM Southern Nevada District website at where it is listed “In the Spotlight.”  Select “Desert Tortoise Translocation Draft Environmental Assessment.”


A final decision on the EA is expected by October 2012.


Written comments must be addressed by mail or delivered to Jessie Stegmeier, Las Vegas Field Office, Bureau of Land Management, 4701 N. Torrey Pines Drive, Las Vegas, NV 89130 or by e-mail to or by fax to 702-515-5023. If you have questions about this project, please call 702-515-5102. Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment – including your personal identifying information – may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

Ely District Office   702 N. Industrial Way      Ely, NV 89301  

Last updated: 04-14-2015