U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIORBUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20240
October 23, 2009
In Reply Refer To:
6500 (220/230) P
EMS TRANSMISSION 10/29/2009
Instruction Memorandum No. 2010-011
To: All Field Officials (except Idaho State Office)
From: Assistant Director, Renewable Resources and Planning
Subject: Information Request for GIS Data on Domestic Sheep and Goats DD: 11/20/09
Program Area: Rangeland Resources (1020) and Wildlife (1110).
Purpose: As part of a multi-agency effort the BLM is collecting data on the authorized grazing locations of domestic sheep and goats on public lands to determine the location and likelihood of contact between domestic sheep or goats and wild sheep. This data will be used to develop a GIS decision support tool, which will help the BLM to identify areas where the potential contact between domestic sheep or goats and wild sheep can be anticipated and where management steps are needed to minimize the risk of contact.
Policy/Action: To obtain GIS data on where domestic sheep or goats can or do occur on public lands, Field Office staff must review the currently available data and, where necessary make any adjustments or corrections. The spreadsheets attached to this Instruction Memorandum contain information from the Rangeland Administration System (RAS) for three categories of authorized uses: 1) goat and/or sheep use identified on grazing permits or leases, 2) special use authorizations for grazing permittees/lessees, and 3) special use authorizations for non-BLM permittees/lessees. This information is typically reported at the allotment level, although some pasture-specific use is shown. Where the presence or distribution of domestic sheep and goats is known to be confined to a scale smaller than the allotment and that information is not reported on the spreadsheets, the Field Offices are asked to provide that information. For example, you should identify any restrictions to specific pasture(s) or geographic area(s) documented in grazing decisions, Allotment Management Plans (AMP), or other functional equivalent. Restrictions related to informal agreements that cannot be enforced by the authorized officer should not be reported.
Field Offices are asked to provide the following information using standards and formats described in attachments:
a. Areas where domestic sheep or goat grazing or trailing occurs adjacent to but is not permitted on public lands (In particular, identify areas where there is a significant potential for sheep or goats to enter public land, and therefore present a potential risk.)
b. Areas where domestic sheep or goats will be used for vegetation or fuels treatments.
c. Areas where domestic goats are known to be used as recreational pack animals on or adjacent to public lands.
Data should be reviewed and/or developed in coordination with Field Office GIS specialists, rangeland resource specialists, and wildlife biologists and submitted to State Office GIS specialists for consolidation and finally sent to John Courtright, GIS Analyst, at the Idaho State Office for BLM-wide consolidation. John Courtright can be reached at 208-373-3966 with questions regarding development of the GIS data.
Timeframe: Responses are requested by the close of business November 16, 2009.
Budget Impact: Minimal impact.
Background: The BLM is in the process of revising policy for management of domestic sheep and goats in wild sheep habitat. This policy and its application will be supported by the development of a GIS decision support tool depicting areas where contact may occur between domestic sheep and goats and wild sheep.
Manual/Handbook affected: None.
Coordination: Rangeland Resources (WO220) and Fish, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (WO230).
Contact: Questions should be referred to Doug Powell, Rangeland Management Specialist, at 202-912-7209 or Amy Krause, Wildlife Biologist, at 202-912-7236
Signed by: Authenticated by:
Edwin L. Roberson Robert M. Williams
Assistant Director Division of IRM Governance,WO-560
Renewable Resources and Planning