BLM welcomes comments on draft plan for big game habitat conservation in Colorado
LAKEWOOD, Colo.– As part of a legal settlement with the State of Colorado, the Bureau of Land Management released a draft proposal today to amend existing BLM Colorado resource management plans to better promote conservation of high priority big game habitat in Colorado. Wildlife, particularly big game, is an essential ingredient in the Colorado way of life, and BLM Colorado recognizes the need to ensure that wildlife thrives on public lands.
“We analyzed several alternatives that address demand for big game habitat protections in Colorado,” said Deputy State Director Alan Bittner. “Protecting migratory patterns of big game populations and enhancing habitat connectivity is a top conservation priority and an important part of our multiple use mission and better align with the State of Colorado’s management of big game. The BLM looks forward to hearing from the public and our partners to continue developing this amendment.”
The BLM initiated this effort to evaluate alternative management approaches for the Bureau’s oil and gas planning decisions to maintain, conserve, and protect migration and movement corridors and other important habitat for bighorn sheep, pronghorn, elk, and mule deer as part of a legal settlement with the State of Colorado. The amendments to local plans would allow BLM to expand consideration of big game population and habitat data when making oil and gas decisions, maximizing management consistency in these habitats with other federal agencies, state and local governments, and Tribes where appropriate.
Today’s publication of a Notice of Availability in the Federal Register for the proposal initiates a 90-day public comment period. The public may submit comments regarding the scope of the analysis, relevant issues, draft alternatives, and other pertinent information via the BLM National NEPA Register The BLM also plans to host public meetings on this proposal, which will be announced on the BLM Colorado website once scheduled.
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.