Lawsuit to protect bird nicknamed feathered mouse


This 2017 photo provided by the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources shows the Eastern Black Rail. The Center for Biological Diversity and Healthy Gulf sued the Trump administration and U.S. Interior Secretary David Bernhardt Thursday, March 19, 2020, for failing to finalize a decision to protect eastern black rails under the Endangered Species Act. (Christy Hand/South Carolina Department of Natural Resources via AP)

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Environmentalists have sued the Trump administration for failing to follow through on a proposal to protect an elusive marsh bird called the eastern black rail and nicknamed the “feathered mouse.”

A lawsuit filed Thursday says the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposed listing the bird as threatened in 2018, but never made the rule final.

The Center for Biological Diversity and a coalition called Healthy Gulf say the birds are “on the brink of extinction.”

They say that’s largely because of loss of wetlands where it lives.

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