By Associated Press - Friday, March 7, 2014

GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) - Conservation groups are seeking federal Endangered Species Act protection for a rare beach flower found in Oregon and California.

The Center for Biological Diversity and others filed a petition Friday with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service arguing the silvery phacelia is in danger of extinction from off-road vehicles and the spread of nonnative beach grass.

The petition says the plant, from the same family as the forget-me-not, is only found along a 130-mile stretch of coast from Bandon, Ore., to Crescent City, Calif. It has clusters of white flowers and grows to be 18 inches tall. Its silvery hairs keep salt spray off the leaves.

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