In the western United Sates, sagebrush is often the dominant vegetation over vast areas. It is a highly digestible forage: high in protein and other nutrients. Sage grouse and ungulates migrate long distances for it. Sagebrush offers thermal and security cover for animals. In sum, sagebrush is a keystone species in a sparsely populated landscape.
Herbicide applications, mechanical treatments, and prescribed burning are commonly applied to large areas in big sagebrush communities, often with the goal to improve wildlife habitats. Managers should refrain. ~ American ecologist Jeffrey Beck et al