NM farmers: Questions remain over prairie chicken

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Associated Press

Posted on January 11, 2014 at 1:02 PM

PORTALES, N.M. (AP) — Landowners in eastern New Mexico say they still have questions over the lesser prairie chicken and its possible listing as a threatened species

The Portales News-Tribune reports (http://goo.gl/wpsN9b) that several landowners said this week informational meetings on the rare grouse only resulted in vague information and little specifics.

Officials have been holding meetings around New Mexico about insurance programs for farmers if the bird were to be listed.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is slated to decide on where to list the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.

Critics say listing the bird could have massive consequences for landowners and the oil and gas industry in New Mexico, Texas, Colorado, Oklahoma and Kansas.

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