Located approximately 10 miles west of the town of Arco and just east of Craters of the Moon National Monument lies Timbered Dome Ranch. Sagebrush and grasses are the dominant vegetation on the property, except near the summit of Timbered Dome where various species of pine trees grow, giving the property its name. The ranch is bordered by BLM and private lands and is a critical migratory corridor for elk, deer and pronghorn. Recently, it has had wintering herds of approximately 250 elk and 500 mule deer.
Timbered Dome provides year-round habitat for elk, chukar, raptors, pygmy rabbit, mule deer, and migratory songbirds. The property also provides habitat for Greater Sage-Grouse and their leks (mating grounds) on and near the property. Sage-Grouse and pygmy rabbits are highly vulnerable to a loss in sagebrush-steppe habitat, and Timbered Dome offers ideal habitat for their populations. Sage-Grouse are candidates for endangered species protection, and pygmy rabbits are a species of concern in Idaho.
Timbered Dome was acquired by the Wood River Land Trust in 2010. Through working with the neighboring landowner, permanent protection of this property and the neighboring ranch was accomplished through the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s Grassland Reserve Program and private conservation easements. Funding for the Grassland Reserve Program came from the agency’s Sage-Grouse Initiative, which focuses on protecting and improving Sage-Grouse habitat.
Timbered Dome contributes to a larger partnership, the Pioneers Alliance. This Alliance is a group effort of private and public agencies who are working to protect thousands of acres in the Pioneer Mountain range.