Dotted with homesteads built by early settlers, the Curlew National Grassland is the only National Grassland in the Intermountain West, established in 1960. It consists of over 47,000 acres of land covered with sagebrush and non-native seeded grasses. Of special interest is the Sweeten Pond area developed especially for waterfowl and shorebirds. Many bird-watchers visit the area in the spring to watch the Sharptail and Sage Grouse perform their courtship dances.
The Curlew National Grasslands in western Oneida County, operated by the federal government, is a demonstration project of how land can be reclaimed and restored to a perpetual cycle. The Grassland maintains an abundant wildlife population. At the western edge of the Grasslands March and June see one of natures most unusual mating rituals play out. Sage and Sharp Tail Grouse gather as the males engage in a “dance” to attract their mates.