CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is extending for 45 days the comment period on a proposal to list a distinct population of sage grouse as a threatened species.
Public comments will be accepted through Feb. 10.
The federal agency in October proposed protecting a distinct population along the Nevada-California line under the Endangered Species Act. The proposal would designate about 1.8 million acres as critical habitat.
The service estimates there are only about 5,000 of the birds left.
The so-called bistate sage grouse is separate from the greater sage grouse population, which is also under consideration for protection. Found in 11 Western states, the Fish and Wildlife Service will make a decision by late 2015 on whether greater sage grouse also warrant protection.
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