Cover photo for Sage Grouse Initiative

Sage Grouse Initiative (SGI)

Natural Resources Conservation Service

The sage grouse, a chicken-like bird uniquely adapted to this habitat, is the poster child of the sagebrush country and is best known for its early-morning dance during mating season.

Large-scale conversion of native rangelands to cultivated fields, housing and energy developments, invading conifers, and catastrophic wildfires have fragmented this vital landscape, reducing its size by half. And many species, including the sage grouse, have seen substantial declines from historic numbers as a result.

Stewardship-minded ranchers are helping reverse this decline by conserving and enhancing sagebrush habitat. And their conservation practices benefit more than just wildlife. They are improving the long-term sustainability of their grazing lands. As the saying goes, “what’s good for the bird is good for the herd.”

NRCS offers technical and financial assistance to help ranchers voluntarily conserve sage grouse habitat on private lands. This assistance helps producers plan and implement a variety of conservation activities, or practices, that benefit the bird and agricultural operations.


Rancher or related private land owners.

Application Instructions

Applications for most programs are accepted on a continuous basis, but they’re considered for funding in different ranking periods. Be sure to ask your local NRCS district conservationist about the deadline for the ranking period to ensure you turn in your application in time.


Financial Instrument

Education, Grant

Updated April 23, 2024

Image Credit: National Wildlife Refuge

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