S.J. and Jessie E. Quinney College of Natural Resources
Wildland Resources Department
One of the largest threats to greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus ursophasianus) is habitat loss due to wildfire. Cheatgrass is an invasive annual grass that increases the frequency and severity of wildfire, creating an even larger threat to sage-grouse.
One approach to protect sage-grouse habitat is to implement fuel breaks of perennial grasses to slow the spread of wildfire. Perennial grasses are used in these fuel breaks because they stay green longer into the summer and are more resistant to the spread of fire.
The fuel breaks were implemented in Dry Basin in 2016 and Badger Flat in 2011 by removing the undesirable species, followed by a winter reseeding of the desirable vegetation species.
Price, William, "Establishment of Fuel Breaks to Protect Sage-Grouse Habitat in Northwest Utah" (2019). Research on Capitol Hill. Paper 116.