BLM to Fertilize Land in Pinedale Wyoming Area

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Last year a survey showed that the mule deer population was down by 60% since the last survey was done several years ago. In an effort to improve the sagebrush for winter forage, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management announced Wednesday they plan to start fertilizing in gas fields in Wyoming. About 48 square miles south of Pinedale Wyoming, at the Pinedale Anticline gas fields on the Mesa, will be fertilized starting in late fall. The plan is to fertilize the areas for the next 10 years in a step to help with the mule deer population. Three square miles of gas field leases are being retired voluntarily by the gas industry in the area.

The first couple of years around 3,000 acres will be fertilized with granular fertilizer by air. After that more land would be fertilized depending on funding availability and other considerations, said Shane DeForest, manager of the BLM's Pinedale Field Office. From Billings Gazette.

Comments

Ca_Vermonster's picture

I'd hate to be the one guy

I'd hate to be the one guy they select to walk out there with the little hand crank fertilizer tool.. ...lol

that's a pretty interesting concept.  As you say Hunter, kinda like the food plot concept.  But, I have never heard of anything being done like this on such a large scale, and by a government agency.  It will be interesting to see how this progresses, and if the mule deer numbers do increase, if they can directly attribute it to their efforts to fertilize the land.

hunter25's picture

Interesting idea and one I

Interesting idea and one I don't think I've ever seen used before by a state agency anyway. Sort of like planting food plots for the game but on public lands instead. Things must be pretty bad to go to such drastic measures. I'm not sure how big the herd was before but the decline must be very significant to go to such means to restore it. I bet the cost associated with this is large as well and it will be interesting to see if they will be able to continue the program after they get it going. Hopefully there will be enough rainfall to get it into the ground well when they start or it may not accomplish much right away either.

I'ts good to see though that this resource is considered important enough to try this.

I have heard of Pinedale before so hopefully it will return to what it was before.