BLM Proposes to Remove Juniper to Conserve Greater Sage-Grouse Habitat



BLM Office:

Boise District Office

Media Contact:

BOISE, Idaho – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM), in collaboration with state and other federal agencies and conservation groups, is proposing to remove western juniper from sagebrush-steppe habitat in southwest Idaho to help protect the Greater sage-grouse.

The BLM is taking public comments on a draft environmental impact statement (EIS) for the proposed Bruneau-Owyhee Sage-Grouse Habitat (BOSH) Project.  The draft EIS analyzes plans to remove western juniper that is encroaching on about 600,000 acres within a 1.5 million acre project area of sage-grouse habitat in Owyhee County.  The project is part of a West-wide effort to use collaborative, landscape-scale techniques to conserve sage-grouse habitat on public lands.

In southwestern Idaho the spread of Western juniper is a primary threat to sage-grouse habitat.  “Removing encroaching juniper will improve habitat for sage-grouse and other wildlife species, and improve the resiliency of the landscape,” said BLM Boise District Manager Lara Douglas. “Conserving habitat for sage-grouse is vital to improving the health of the entire ecosystem.”

The proposed juniper removal project would build on proactive land management policies and practices to conserve the region's remaining sagebrush habitat, which also supports significant economic activity, such as ranching and recreation, and abundant wildlife, including mule deer, elk, pronghorn antelope and golden eagles.

The draft EIS is available for public review and comment beginning today (Nov. 18, 2016).  Electronic copies are available via the BLM website at and at the BLM Boise District Office, 3948 S. Development Ave., Boise, ID 83705.

The BLM will host two open house public meetings to share information and answer questions about the draft EIS and to take comments.  Meetings will be held at the BLM District Office, 3948 Development Ave. Boise, ID on Dec. 6, 2016, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. and at the Owyhee County Museum, 17085 Basey St. Murphy, ID on Dec. 8, 2016, from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Comments will be accepted through Jan. 3, 2016.  Comments will be used to prepare a final EIS and Record of Decision for the project.  Please send comments to one of the following addresses:

Please reference “BOSH Project Draft EIS” on all correspondence and include “Attn: Mike McGee.” 

Before including an address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in any comments, please be aware that the entire comment—including personal identifying information—may be made publicly available at any time.  Requests to withhold personal identifying information from public review can be submitted, but the BLM cannot guarantee that it will be able to do so.  The BLM will not consider anonymous comments.  All submissions from organizations and businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, will be available for public inspection in their entirety.

Questions or requests for more information may be directed to Mike McGee by phone at 208-384-3300 or by email at

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.