Claremore Daily Progress

June 14, 2013

Inhofe asks for delay on bird ruling

Staff Reports
Associated Press


U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe is asking federal officials to delay for another six months a decision on whether to list the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species.

The letter sent Thursday by Inhofe is supported by fellow Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn and a bipartisan group of senators from the other four states that would be affected by the ruling — Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico and Texas.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe in February agreed to extend the comment period for the proposed threatened listing of the lesser prairie chicken, a stocky, ground-dwelling bird.

Inhofe says the extended comment period resulted in an “influx of significant new public input,” and that Ashe should also consider a new five-state conservation proposal to protect the bird.