Colorado sues federal government over Gunnison sage grouse

February 11, 2015
Photo: Two Gunnison sage grousesCourtesy of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Two Gunnison sage grouses face each other.

a federal decision to list the Gunnison sage grouse as a threatened species.

Most of the habitat for the bird is in central and southwestern Colorado. In its lawsuit, the state argues its Gunnison sage grouse conservation efforts have led to an increase in the grouse population.

"We look forward to our day in United States District Court,” said Attorney General Cynthia Coffman. 

State officials fear the federal protection could harm agriculture and energy development. Some environmental groups have filed suit as well. They argue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service didn’t go far enough to protect the bird.