A variety of photos below demonstrate our work to benefit wildlife on BLM land near Pinedale, WY this fall and early winter. Seasonal drop-downs will enable easier passage for all species (and reduce bird strikes) on the Soapholes and Fremont Butte fences shown in the map linked here. On the Boundary fence and Alkali Draw fences (also shown below), we applied four unique treatments in 1/4 mile segments for scientific study over the next two winters.
Black plastic coil was secured to the top wire as one potential visual enhancement for grouse. We believe it may be more visible during winter months than any white marker or white plastic application. However, since the ground is not always snow-covered while grouse are present, we also applied “mixed black/white loom” to 1/4 mile segments to cover all conditions in theory. Black markers (hung 3-4 per panel on the top wire) were another treatment, and wooden stays (stapled two per panel) were the final treatment. An approximately 1-mile stretch of fence was given no new treatments to serve as a control. The two drop-down fences should be a nearly fail-safe treatment since collisions would be minimized to those occurring less than 16 inches from the ground (unlikely). We’re interested to see what works best to add to the existing literature on bird-friendly fences.