Environmental group challenges sage grouse

Cheyenne, WY – An environmental group is challenging Interior Department plans to classify sage grouse as a candidate for protection and not as threatened or endangered.

The department announced on Friday that protection for sage grouse is warranted but that the resources aren't available to manage the bird as endangered right now.

The group Western Watersheds questions that finding, in a supplemental complaint filed today in U.S. District Court in Boise, Idaho.

A group attorney says the notion that sage grouse aren't a high priority for protection seems unlikely after the government spent considerable time and money studying whether sage grouse deserve protection.

Western Watersheds sued in 2006 over a previous decision not to list sage grouse.