The Gunnison Sage Grouse is found in parts of Utah and Colorado. It’s estimated there are only 4,800 of them left. The largest population of the species, about 4,000 grouse, inhabits the Gunnison Basin.
Last November, the federal government listed the Gunnison sage grouse as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. That doesn’t mean, though, that the fighting over this contentious bird is done.
On Tuesday at a regular meeting, Delta County Commissioners commented on a pending wildlife ruling by the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission that would affect the imperiled Gunnison sage-grouse, asking that the commission use current habitat maps to define setbacks and not require a blanket four-mile distance. KVNF's Marty Durlin has more on the threats to the iconic bird.
The Gunnison sage-grouse is known for an elaborate mating display along with a ritual dance, or strut. And of course there’s the mating call, which sounds something like a sluggish dran.