Dear Senator Reid and Senator Heller,
I want to thank you for your leadership on sage-grouse legislation for Nevada. The second discussion draft is a great start for protecting key sage-grouse habitat as wilderness but there are a number of important areas that were not included.
With climate change, it is critical to protect some of the higher elevation National Forest areas as wilderness for the sage-grouse. Please include the following areas for wilderness protection:
- Toiyabe Crest – this large and exquisite area has some of the best high elevation habitat around.
- Copper and Elk Mountains and McAffee all have high wilderness values and very high percentages of sage-grouse habitat.
Some important BLM areas still need protection as wilderness.
- Tobin Crest in Pershing County– important habitat for an isolated population of sage-grouse.
- BLM’s Granite Range (Granite and Buckhorn units), Burro Mountain and the Bittner Triangle in Washoe County should also be designated wilderness to help protect sage-grouse.
Thank you for your consideration.