ROOSEVELT — In 1948 the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources used mostly federal funds to purchase 117 acres near Roosevelt as habitat for ring-necked pheasant and California quail. Those who know the place call it the "Roosevelt Upland Bird Sanctuary."

After reconsidering its intended use of the land, the DWR opened it to hunting in the early 1950s. By the 1980s a program ended that previously provided for the rearing and release of chukar game birds for hunting.

Eventually homebuilding and farming squeezed any remaining life out of the acreage as a destination for hunting. Now, the DWR wants to get rid of the land, which when purchased included 46.5 shares of irrigation stock.

"This parcel no longer provides hunting opportunities for Utah hunters due to the close proximity to residential homes, relatively small size and limited wildlife value," DWR officials said in a recent statement.

Public comment on a draft environmental assessment of the site and a proposal to dispose of it will be taken until March 15. The preferred alternative is to sell the land, which has not yet been appraised. Proceeds from the sale would either be used to purchase more wildlife property or put into funds that make up the DWR's Wildlife Restoration Act Grant.