There are only two places left on Earth where you might catch sight of a Gunnison sage-grouse: southwest Colorado and Utah’s San Juan County. This bird, only recently identified as a species distinct from the well-known Greater sage-grouse, has rapidly claimed a dubious notoriety. On extinction watch lists, the Gunnison sage-grouse is now widely recognized as one of the most rare and threatened avian species in America.
Yet here in Utah, on a sprawling tract of sagebrush just outside of Monticello, our land acquisition will provide a critical foothold—and real hope—for an endangered species. The Nature Conservancy has purchased 1,080 acres of land situated within the core of Utah’s remaining Gunnison sage-grouse habitat, and adjacent to an historic lek, or mating site, for the birds. The deal provides immediate and lasting protection for the grouse against threats ranging from conversion to farming to solar and wind energy development.
Though we would love to share this incredible place with our supporters and sage-grouse lovers, because of the extremely sensitive nature of this species, the preserve is closed to all visitors. Thank you for respecting this rare habitat.