Cattle and fertilization of the land is one aid to the Sage-grouse, Pygmy rabbits and their habitat that I have noted in all the rhetoric from BLM, ONDA and USFWS that has been ignored. Approximately five years of research on the ground, in the snow and ice in winter, in seasons of summer, and spring on Hart Mtn. and Sheldon Antelope Refuges by Mike Gregg, a USFWS/BLM researcher and biologist, and Jenny Meisel, another researcher of grasses, forbes and sagebrush habitat of the aforementioned animals has not been mentioned.
Where are these disregarded reports and why have they not been taken into consideration?
ONDA knows naught about research like this as they only removed fence upon Hart Mtn. with the intent to remove and continue the removal of cattle out of antelope territory.
This is just like the intent and fight to remove cattle from Steens Mtn. lands so that here would be “wild land” retained for just the use of Sage-grouse, rabbits, coyotes, squirrels to live “free and unfettered by other larger animal encroachment.”
Larger animal encroachment included the public who couldn’t just walk or hike into “wild lands”, but needed motorized vehicles like wheelchairs, ATVs to get them to disembarking areas like campgrounds and trails.
We are in danger of losing the advantage of natural fertilization of grasslands where bison are no longer the large animal to give us the “fertilization” needed to replace the spores, fungi and redeposit of some seeds to enrich the soil that encourages the re-growth of grasses and forbes that antelope, Pygmy rabbits, squirrels and ultimately the cattle live off, completing the circle of life.
By banning the cattle and not using common sense and research from the past, we are not learning from the past, but trying to “re-invent the wheel of co-operative natural existence.”
See next week’s Examiner for Part II