Wyoming greater sage-grouse habitat prioritization: a collection of multi-scale seasonal models and geographic information systems land management tools

Year: 

2015

Suggested Citation: 

O’Donnell, M.S., Aldridge, C.L., Doherty, K.E., and Fedy, B.C., 2015, Wyoming greater sage-grouse habitat prioritization—A collection of multi-scale seasonal models and geographic information systems land management tools: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 891, 28 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ds891.

With rapidly changing landscape conditions within Wyoming and the potential effects of landscape changes on sage-grouse habitat, land managers and conservation planners, among others, need procedures to assess the location and juxtaposition of important habitats, land-cover, and land-use patterns to balance wildlife requirements with multiple human land uses. Biologists frequently develop habitat-selection studies to identify prioritization efforts for species of conservation concern to increase understanding and help guide habitat-conservation efforts. Recently, the authors undertook a large-scale collaborative effort that developed habitat-selection models for Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) across large landscapes in Wyoming, USA and for multiple life-stages (nesting, late brood-rearing, and winter). We developed these habitat models using resource selection functions, based upon sage-grouse telemetry data collected for localized studies and within each life-stage. The models allowed us to characterize and spatially predict seasonal sage-grouse habitat use in Wyoming. Due to the quantity of models, the diversity of model predictors (in the form of geographic information system data) produced by analyses, and the variety of potential applications for these data, we present here a resource that complements our published modeling effort, which will further support land managers.

We deliver all products described herein as online geographic information system data for visualization and downloading. We outline the data properties for each model and their data inputs, describe the process of selecting appropriate data products for multifarious applications, describe all data products and software, provide newly derived model composites, and discuss how land managers may use the models to inform future sage-grouse studies and potentially refine conservation efforts. The models, software tools, and associated opportunities for novel applications of these products should provide a suite of additional, but not exclusive, tools for assessing Wyoming Greater Sage-grouse habitats, which land managers, conservationists, and scientists can apply to myriad applications.

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Michael O'Donnell
Michael O'Donnell