Prairie chickens decline at Konza prairie.

A recent paper looked at changes in the prairie chicken population at the Konza long-term ecological research site in KS.  They found declining populations despite the land protections in place.  Their methods indicated that woody plant community expansion had a negative effect on the chickens. They also speculated that the site may not be big enough to sustain the population in a landscape that is being increasingly fragmented.

“We recommend tallgrass prairie be managed with combinations of rotational prescribed fire at intervals ≤4 years and grazing that maintain heterogeneity of native grasslands, prevent establishment of woody plants, and provide diverse habitats for prairie-chickens and other sensitive species of grassland birds. ”

More information >