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US agency denies petition to strip protections from songbird

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has denied a petition that sought to end federal protections for the western yellow-billed cuckoo. The agency issued its finding this week, saying taking the songbird off the threatened and endangered species list isn’t an option at this time. American Stewards of Liberty, a nonprofit group that advocates for private property rights, had argued that the bird’s status needed to be reviewed because it had sufficient habitat. Biologists said new data shows habitat loss and fragmentation continue to be an issue for the cuckoo. Recent mining projects in central and southern Arizona are also affecting the species.

Associated Press

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