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The Mountain-Prairie Region


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Office of the Secretary

CONTACT: Hugh Vickery

August 26, 2004


Norton Announces Private Stewardship and Tribal Grants to Benefit Wildlife and Habitat in Colorado 

(DENVER) – Secretary of  the Interior Gale Norton announced today that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is awarding three grants worth $258,000 in Colorado to private landowners, conservation groups and tribes to conserve imperiled wildlife and its habitat.

            “Through these cooperative conservation grants, we are working in partnership with the people of Colorado to better conserve the state’s wildlife,” Norton said. “We are achieving conservation benefits that we could not achieve alone.”

            The grants are part of more than $16 million in grants to support private landowners, conservation organizations and Native American tribes in 150 projects across the nation through three programs begun by President Bush – the Private Stewardship Grant program, the Tribal Landowner Incentive program, and the Tribal Wildlife Grant program. 

            The grants benefiting Colorado include: 

  • Lasater Ranch Black-tailed Prairie Dog Project - (Application by ROE Ecological Services, LLC) – Elbert County, Colorado - ($17,570)  To establish a viable black-tailed prairie dog colony on native prairie within the historic range of the species, which in turn will provide nesting habitat for several avian species that thrive on prairie dog colonies.
  • Private Lands Habitat Enhancement for Grassland Species at Risk - (application by Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory) – Bent, Lincoln, Weld, Las Animas and Pueblo Counties, Colorado and Custer County, South Dakota - ($114,675) – To restore shortgrass prairie rangelands to benefit grassland and riparian species at risk, principally declining grassland birds.  The six individual projects vary in the type of management proposed and include reseeding cropland to native prairie, invasive species removal, and altering livestock grazing management.

Norton also announced that the Southern Ute Indian Tribe has won a grant of $126,005 under the Tribal Landowner Incentive Program. This project will result in the restoration of 3,400 feet of severely eroded stream banks and improved water quality in Stollsteimer Creek, replanting of native riparian vegetation, and restoration of habitat for wintering bald eagles, neo-tropical migratory birds, osprey, waterfowl, leopard frogs and many other wildlife species. The Service hopes the project will serve as a model for adjacent landowners.

President Bush is expected to sign an executive order instructing federal agencies to work with states, tribes, local communities, conservation groups, private landowners and other partners in cooperative conservation projects.

President Bush’s executive order will instruct federal departments and agencies such as the Interior Department to ensure that they carry out their statutory obligations in a “manner that promotes cooperative conservation, with an emphasis on appropriate inclusion of local participation in federal decision making.”

The national list of grants under the three programs is available at

- DOI -


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