1. ENDANGERED SPECIES:
Interior proposes 'threatened' listing for bird with habitat coveted by energy developers
The Interior Department today proposed Endangered Species Act protection for the lesser prairie chicken, a grayish-brown grouse whose native grasslands and prairie habitat in Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas has declined by about 84 percent. Scientists today warned that the iconic bird is likely to be in danger of extinction in the foreseeable future. It is threatened by grazing, tree encroachment, conversion of rangeland to crop and non-native forage, and energy development.