The Bureau of Land Management Lander Field Office is seeking input on a plan to enhance aspen stands on 57 acres in the West Cottonwood Creek area of Green Mountain, approximately 12 miles southeast of Jeffrey City.
The project is a joint effort in shared conservation stewardship by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department and the BLM to improve mule deer and elk habitat by removing encroaching conifers from aspen stands.
“Conifers have spread from ridgelines and are out-competing aspen,” said BLM Wildlife Biologist Leah Yandow. “We anticipate that by removing conifers from these aspen stands, the open canopy will support enhanced aspen growth and reproduction, and increased diversity of understory vegetation.”
If implemented, work will occur later in 2018 on three parcels on the west side of the Loop Road. Conifers will be cut and left in place to reduce browsing of aspen.
Aspen communities provide a multitude of benefits to wildlife habitat, livestock grazing, water storage and firebreaks. However, across the Intermountain West, aspen has dramatically declined due to fire suppression, disease, over browsing and drought. Aspen is a sun-loving species that flourishes after disturbance such as fire or logging—techniques employed in this project to remove conifers.
Though input related to this proposed project is welcome at any time, comments received by Aug. 31, 2018, will help ensure a well-informed environmental assessment. Email comments to [email protected] (please include “West Cottonwood Creek Aspen Enhancement Project” in the subject line) or mail comments to BLM Lander Field Office, Attn: Kristin Yannone, 1335 Main Street, Lander, WY 82520.
Before including your address, phone number, email address or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment – including your personal identifying information – may be publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.