HomeInitiativesWestern Grasslands InitiativeLesser Prairie-Chicken

Lesser Prairie-Chicken

Lesser Prairie Chicken
Lesser Prairie Chicken. ©J. N. Stuart

WESTERN GRASSLAND SPECIES:

Lesser Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus)

An iconic American grouse species that occupies native grasslands and prairies of the southern Great Plains. It is estimaged that 90% of the species habitat has diminished across their historical range.

WAFWA in partnership with the states of New Mexico, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas have embarked on an innovative and unprecedented approach to wildlife conservation. 

Lesser Prairie Chicken Range-wide Conservation Plan

The rangewide plan is a voluntary conservation strategy that establishes a mitigation framework which is administered by the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (WAFWA) for the purpose of allowing plan participants the opportunity to mitigate any unavoidable impacts of a particular activity on the lesser prairie-chicken and provides financial incentives to landowners who voluntarily participate and manage their property for the benefit of the lesser prairie-chicken.

The Lesser Prairie-Chicken Range-wide Conservation Plan
916 views / 2109 downloads
    pdf, 9.79 MB
    October 1, 2013
Publication Details

Mitigation Framework

Range-Wide Oil & Gas Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances
for the Lesser Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus)
in Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas
2014-2044

The Range-Wide Oil and Gas Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances for the Lesser Prairie-Chicken (CCAA) is a voluntary conservation strategy that establishes a mitigation framework which is administered by WAFWA and permitted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS). The CCAA is in partnership with the states of New Mexico, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas, the oil and gas industry and private landowners.

The CCAA provides the oil and gas industry with regulatory assurances should the LPC become listed under the Endangered Species Act. In exchange, industry participants have agreed to limit the impact of their activities on the species habitat and to mitigate any unavoidable impacts. Mitigation is provided through voluntary agreements with private landowners to manage their properties for the benefit of the species.

Range-Wide Oil & Gas Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances for the Lesser Prairie-Chicken
53 views / 218 downloads
    pdf, 1.05 MB
    February 28, 2014
Publication Details

2014. Oil & Gas Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances (CCAA) (PDF, 1 MB)

2021. CCAA Business Plan (PDF, 265 KB)
The 2021 Updated CCAA Business Plan replaces the RWP’s Appendix I: WAFWA Business Plan for Implementing the LPC RWP.

View a recorded webinar on the updated business plan from September 21, 2021 (HERE).


Program Contact

Chanda Pettie
Lesser Prairie-Chicken Program Manager
chanda.pettie@wafwa.org
719-207-5053


Range-wide Aerial Surveys

Range-wide Population Size of the Lesser Prairie Chicken: 2012 to 2022

Range-wide Population Size of the Lesser Prairie Chicken: 2012 to 2021
586 views / 1231 downloads
    pdf, 1.56 MB
    August 25, 2021
Publication Details

Lesser prairie-chickens breed in relatively open areas (e.g., low visual obstruction and low horizontal cover) of grasslands where males congregate to perform a courtship dance. This area is known as a lek. After mating, most females will nest within 3.2 km (2 miles) of the lek site. Due to this high lek affinity, managers monitor the abundance of this life cycle component for population trends.

In 2011, the Lesser Prairie-Chicken Interstate Working Group, representing the state fish and wildlife agencies in Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Texas developed and implemented a common range-wide survey strategy to estimate the population size for lesser prairie-chicken. A range-wide sampling framework and methodology was developed, for aerial surveys and ground truthing, to estimate total abundance of LPC active leks. In 2013, the state fish and wildlife agencies committed to continuing those surveys through 2021 and that commitment continues to 2022.


Field Guides Available for Purchase!
Field Identification Guide for Common Plants
used to Assess Lesser Prairie Chicken Habitat