Great news for animal lovers? This week, the department of the interior announced that the bi-state sage grouse will not be listed on the endangered species list. Never heard of it? Okay, enjoy, though, because for one thing, it’s the most ridiculous-looking bird you’ve ever seen. They do this, for one thing.
Anyways, their habitat spans across 11 states, and it’s shrunk in half because of land development for oil and renewables. “The sage grouse is an umbrella species, so it’s sort of the canary in a coal mine,” says Randi Spivak, the public-lands program director at the Center for Biological Diversity.
Spivak’s using a bird metaphor to explain a situation happening to actual birds – and that’s confusing. So here’s a very simplified version of the deal. If bad things happen to the grouse, bad things will happen to deer, and to antelope, and that will ruin an entire ecosystem and force us to come up with new lyrics to “Home on the Range.”
It’s a positive sign that the bi-state sage grouse avoided the endangered species list, but what about all the other grouse? Save this silly-looking bird. Tell Congress to stop grousin’ around, and support a proposal to fully fund efforts to conserve the greater sage grouse.