The purpose of the Stewardship Fund is to maintain, enhance, restore, expand or benefit sage grouse habitat and populations through competitive grants. The Fund is also intended to establish free market mechanisms for voluntary, incentive-based conservation efforts that generate credits which can be purchased to offset impacts of development.

The Montana Sage Grouse Oversight Team (MSGOT) oversees expenditures from the Sage Grouse Stewardship Fund account (Fund), which was created by the 2015 Montana Legislature (SB 261). Grant cycles are opened by MSGOT vote, yearly.

Current Grant Cycles

February 11, 2022 -- Open

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Grants may be awarded only to organizations and agencies that hold and maintain conservation easements or leases or that are directly involved in sage grouse habitat mitigation and enhancement activities approved by the Montana Sage Grouse Oversight Team (MSGOT). MCA § 87-5-910(3).

When considering potential conservation projects, private landowners are encouraged to work with an organization or agency which would sponsor the project as the grant applicant and serve as the fiscal agent.

The following projects are only eligible if it is located, at least in part, on land identified as a Core Area, General Habitat, or Connectivity Area. Habitat can be determined by looking at the Montana Sage Grouse Habitat Conservation Map.

  • Reduction of conifer encroachment.
  • Reduction of the spread of invasive weeds that harm sagebrush health or sage grouse habitat.
  • Maintenance, restoration, or improvement of sagebrush health or quality.
  • Purchase or acquisition of leases, conservation leases, or permanent conservation easements that conserve or maintain sage grouse habitat, protect grazing lands, or conserve sage grouse populations.
  • Such projects are subject to further eligibility requirements.
  • Incentives to reduce the conversion of grazing land to cropland.
  • Restoration of cropland to grazing land.
  • Modification of fire management to conserve sage grouse habitat or populations.
  • Demarcation of fences to reduce sage grouse collisions.
  • Reduction of unnatural perching platforms for raptors.
  • Reduction of unnatural safe havens for predators.
  • Sage grouse habitat enhancement that provides project developers the ability to use improved habitat for compensatory mitigation under MCA § 87-5-911.
  • Other project proposals that MSGOT determines are consistent with the purposes of the Act.

See the Application Information and Guidance Document for a complete list of eligible and ineligible projects.

Pre-Application Proposals should be submitted through the Montana Sage Grouse Habitat Conservation Program Project Consultation and Review Website at https://sagegrouse.mt.gov/

Please see the Grant Application Quick Start Guide for further information.

Contact Us


Montana Sage Grouse Habitat Conservation Program

1539 Eleventh Ave. Helena, MT 59601