- Associated Press - Monday, April 11, 2016

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) - The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will once again consider protections for the rare Wyoming pocket gopher.

The Casper Star-Tribune reports (https://bit.ly/22oBSVc ) that the small rodent is the only mammal that exists exclusively in Wyoming. Environmental group WildEarth Guardians asked the Fish and Wildlife Service Wednesday to give it endangered species protections.

WildEarth Guardians wildlife biologist Erik Molvar says only 79 Wyoming pocket gophers have been found over the course of history. He says wall-to-wall energy development has surrounded almost all of the animal’s range in the Red Desert.

Wyoming Game and Fish Department biologist Nichole Bjornlie says the pocket gopher lives in underground burrows in western Carbon County and eastern Sweetwater County.

The Fish and Wildlife Service decided in 2010 that the rodent didn’t warrant an endangered species listing.



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Information from: Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, https://www.trib.com

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