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Feds: Fishers in Rockies may need protection


Endangered species protections may be needed to protect the Northern Rockies fisher, a small fanged predator that once thrived in the region's old growth forests, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Thursday. Also Thursday, the government said it will again review the endangered status of wolverines, another unprotected predator in the weasel family that has suffered a longterm decline. Both animals have been struggling to recover in Northern Rockies states since they were largely wiped out by over-trapping in the 1930s. Environmental groups had petitioned the government last year to protect fishers under the Endangered Species Act. Agreeing with most of the groups' a s s e r t i o n s, t h e F i s h a n d W i l d l i f e Service said it will spend a year studying whether fishers could again disappear from the region without federal protections.


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