HELENA — A coalition of 13 conservation groups has filed notice that it will sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service over its decision to withdraw proposed protections for the wolverine.
The federal agency announced Tuesday it was reversing course on climate change’s threat to the survival of the members of the weasel family.
Wolverines need deep, late-season snow to den, and wildlife officials had previously proposed increased protections to keep the animals from extinction.
But Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe says predictions about climate change’s localized effects are uncertain.
The 13 organizations filed their 60-day notice on Wednesday.
John Mellgren of the Western Environmental Law Center says in the notice that despite the uncertainties, the best available science shows a warming climate likely will be detrimental to the wolverine.
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