RSFO-Currant Creek Habitat Restoration
Project Status: Completed
Tags: riparian, livestock, aquatic, habitat conservation project, Habitat
Project Synopsis: the strategy for restoring the habitat on Currant Creek is to permanently exclude unauthorized livestock from the stream and adjacent meadows unless livestock are authorized in the special use pasture. Livestock are only to be permitted to graze every 3rd year for 3 weeks or as approved by authorized officer. (It's been about ten years since grazing has been authorized in the area due to resource concerns.) The most imminent threat to the currant creek habitat is continual cattle drift into the drainage. This results in the unauthorized grazing of riparian vegetation and BLM projects such as willow, aspen, and other woody species plantings. The area is important habitat (ACEC area) for Colorado River cutthroat trout, elk, deer, beaver, multiple bird species, and other wildlife species. Plant species that the BLM and Game and Fish are managing for increased vigor include: sedges, rushes, various willow species, aspen, wild rose, gooseberry, currant, and other riparian species. Project location would be in mostly sagebrush/grasslands with a portion of it going through sagebrush/juniper. The area is near an elk parturition range and is in seasonal elk and deer range. It is outside core sage grouse areas, but a lek is within 3 miles of the fence (we plan on putting up fence markers). The Currant Creek drainage is part of the Little Mountain Ecosystem and is being managed for improved riparian vegetation vigor, and improved watershed and stream function. The project would aid in increasing the effectiveness of livestock management, improved vegetation vigor, decreasing or stabilization of weedy vegetation, and decreasing browsing levels on willow/aspen planting projects so these species can be established in greater densities in the habitat. The project would also decrease the difficulty in grazing administration and aid the permittee in better livestock management.