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Livestock industry endangered

Listing sage grouse as endangered will damage livestock industry.

Regarding the possibility of listing the sage grouse as endangered, I’m by no means alone when I say if this happens it will lead to the end of the livestock industry in 11 western states. Some optimism might be gained if listed Alternative G‚ the rural community alternative‚ were to be the chosen plan, but the possibility of that happening seems pretty remote. In reading through it versus Alternative D, BLM favored, Alternative G in my opinion has a more sensible approach to both grazing and wildfire management and fire control. Also, it seems more financially feasible for those who will have to pay the bill out of their livestock budget.

Regarding wildfire management and fire control, Alternative G also seems to encompass a more thorough, comprehensive approach than the BLM-preferred alternative. As for the goal of retiring permits, I can think of no better example of the cure being worse than the disease. It is evident that grazing should be a priority preventative fire management tool.

Landowners and permit holders with their stewardship are a vital part of maintaining habitat, not only for the sage grouse but all wildlife. The reality of this is starkly evident in our forests, once beautiful, healthy and a source of pride, and most importantly providing a livelihood for innumerable people as a renewable resource. Since the demise of the timber industry to the spotted owl, the forests, at least in our area, are a disgrace. There are many dead and dying disease-threatened trees, with unrestricted undergrowth providing an ample fuel source for yet more wildfires.

This same scenario must be expected as an eventuality if the sage grouse is listed. Please consider people and land preservation when settling on a management plan for the sage grouse.

Betty Morgan

Burns, Ore.



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