Science framework for conservation and restoration of the sagebrush biome--Part 1

In May 2015 the Department of the Interior released “An Integrated Rangeland Fire Management Strategy: Final Report to the Secretary of the Interior,” (IRFMS; USDOI 2015b). The IRFMS outlined longer-term actions needed to implement policies and strategies for preventing and suppressing rangeland fire and restoringrangeland landscapes affected by fire in the Western United States (USDOI 2015a).

Priority was placed on protecting, conserving, and restoring Great Basin sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystems and, in particular, Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter, GRSG) habitat. Eighty-three individual actions were identified and a provision was included for developing a multi-scale Conservation and Restoration Strategy (C and R Strategy) for sagebrush ecosystems.

Part 1 of the “Science Framework for Conservation and Restoration of the Sagebrush Biome: Linking the Department of the Interior’s Integrated Rangeland Fire Management Strategy to Long-Term Strategic Conservation Actions” (Science Framework) focuses on the science basis and applications for the C and R Strategy. Scientific information and decision-support tools are provided that are intended to:

  1. facilitate prioritization of areas for conservation and restoration management actions,
  2. inform budget prioritization of management actions, and 3) inform management strategies across scales and ownerships.

Part 2 of the Science Framework focuses on management considerations for the C and R Strategy and will be available in 2017. The following topics are planned for inclusion in Part 2:

  1. nonnative invasive plant species management,
  2. wildfire and fuels management,
  3. livestock grazing management,
  4. wild horse and burro considerations,
  5. seed zone considerations,
  6. monitoring to inform adaptive management, and
  7. integration of the Science Framework with other actions initiated in response to the IRFMS.
Cover of science framework part 1