Policy denies Pygmy owl endangered status, groups say

September 23, 2014 2:17 PM

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Policy denies Pygmy owl endangered status, groups say

A reddish-brown owl that burrows in Sonoran Desert cactuses and trees is at the center of plans by wildlife groups to sue a federal agency over the bird's protected status.

The Center for Biological Diversity and the Defenders of Wildlife sent a letter to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Monday saying the agency's new policy denies protection for the cactus ferruginous pygmy owl and violates the Endangered Species Act.

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