January 31, 2015
LOS ANGELES (AP) - U.S. Fish and Wildlife says it will be reducing the habitat area for the endangered Peninsular bighorn sheep by more than half across Southern California.
An agency spokeswoman says the new designation came about because they had refined the process allowing officials to trim areas not critical to the animal's survival. She says she doesn't believe the change will harm the sheep.
The environmental group Center for Biological Diversity says it's considering taking legal steps to challenge the cuts.
The change was compelled by a lawsuit challenging the 2001 critical habitat designation that amounted to more than 840,000 acres in San Diego, Riverside and Imperial counties.
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