Are you ready to say goodbye to the Lesser prairie-chicken…

A male lesser prairie chicken (Texas Parks and Wildlife Dept. | Tom Harvey)
A male lesser prairie chicken (Texas Parks and Wildlife Dept. | Tom Harvey)

The Lesser prairie-chicken is a bird that’s in trouble. Like a lot of wild game, it used to be prevalent throughout the American great plains. But in the last 150 years, Lesser prairie-chicken populations have fallen by approximately 92%.

Today, the bird’s numbers are still crashing and now the Lesser prairie-chicken is only found in pockets of Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. To stabilize the bird’s population and save the species, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service has proposed listing the Lesser prairie-chicken as Threatened.

But according to this piece in The Denver Post, the Governor’s of Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas are saying no way. Why? Because a Threatened listing may jeopardize energy projects and farming practices in those states.

Instead, these Governors believe that their state’s own conservation efforts, along with “commitments” from industry leaders and landowners, will be enough to save these birds (yeah, right).

To find out more about this issue, visit the Lesser Prairie-Chicken Resource Center.

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