“ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Environmentalists have reached an agreement with federal land and wildlife managers that will clear the way for forest restoration efforts to resume in the Southwest.
A federal court had issued an injunction last year that limited timber activities and restoration projects on national forest lands in New Mexico and Arizona pending the outcome of a legal battle over the threatened Mexican spotted owl. WildEarth Guardians had accused the U.S. Forest Service of failing to comply with the Endangered Species Act by not regularly monitoring the owl population.
Under the agreement announced Tuesday, federal managers will regularly track population trends through 2025. Surveys also will be done prior to ground-disturbing activities and known owl habitat will be protected.”