United States ex rel. Bergen v. Lawrence
United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
848 F.2d 1502 (1988)
Taylor Lawrence (defendant) built a 28-mile-long fence in a 20,000-acre area in Wyoming that encompassed federal, state, and private land. The area was a significant winter habitat for pronghorn antelopes. Although the fence was built entirely on Lawrence’s land, the fence enclosed federal land. The fence was antelope-proof, and 700 pronghorn antelopes starved against the fence while attempting to reach their winter range. The United States government (government) (plaintiff) sued Lawrence under the Unlawful Inclosures of Public Lands Act of 1885 (UIA), 43 U.S.C. §§ 1061-66, which prohibited the enclosure of federal lands and required the removal of any enclosures. The district court referred to the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA) to determine whether the antelopes’ foraging for food on the land was a lawful purpose of federal land under the UIA. The FLPMA required federal land to be managed in a manner that provided food and habitat for fish and animals. The district court ordered the fence’s removal or modification in order to allow entry by the antelopes. Lawrence appealed, arguing that (1) the antelopes had no easement across his property, (2) the UIA did not apply to antelopes because the legislative history did not mention wildlife, and (3) there was no unlawful enclosure in the absence of evidence that the fence denied entry to individuals with a legal entitlement to use the federal land.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Anderson, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 175,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,000 briefs, keyed to 188 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.