On August 23, the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission (WGFC) voted to approve regulations authorizing private farms to collect sage grouse eggs and raise sage grouse in captivity. The new regulations carried out the directives included in Wyoming House Bill 271, enacted by the Wyoming legislature in 2017. That law allows for owners of a bird farm to gather sage grouse eggs and then raise sage grouse in their privately owned facilities. The regulations add the details necessary to implement the law and will go into effect when Governor Matt Mead signs them.
The state law and regulations clarify that no one can possess, breed or sell sage grouse unless they are certified by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. The regulations lay out specific requirements for how a facility can become certified to raise sage grouse and provide details on the infrastructure and operations for a facility where this would occur; how eggs can be collected; and potential release procedures for farm-raised sage grouse.
The next WGFC meeting is September 19-20 in Gillette. For more information regarding the WGFC meeting please click here.