Managing for multiple species: Greater sage‐grouse and sagebrush songbirds
This study determined average songbird density in areas of high and low probability of sage‐grouse occurrence. Sagebrush cover at intermediate scales was an important predictor for all species, and ground cover was important for all species except sage thrashers. Areas with a higher probability of sage‐grouse occurrence also contained higher densities of Brewer’s sparrows, green‐tailed towhees, and sage thrashers, but predicted sagebrush sparrow densities were lower in these areas. In northwest Colorado, sage‐grouse may be an effective umbrella for Brewer’s sparrows, green‐tailed towhees, and sage thrashers, but sage‐grouse habitat does not appear to capture areas that support high sagebrush sparrow densities. A multi‐species focus may be the best management and conservation strategy for several species of concern, especially those with conflicting habitat requirements.