CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - The governors of Wyoming and Colorado are teaming up with the head of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management to chair a task force dedicated to protecting sage grouse.
Wyoming Governor Matt Mead announced Friday that he and Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper will co-chair the group with BLM Director Bob Abbey. The task force will look for ways states can protect sage grouse habitat and manage resources to protect the bird.
The task force approach comes out of a December meeting in Cheyenne at which Interior Secretary Ken Salazar met with officials from 10 states to consider ways to prevent sage grouse from being listed under the federal Endangered Species Act.
Officials say federal protections for the bird could hinder energy development across the West.