Rare Ute Wildflower Rebounds, No Longer Needs Protection

A rare wildflower found only on tribal land in southwestern Colorado is no longer listed as needing protection.

The Durango Herald reports that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has removed Sleeping Ute milkvetch from a list of candidates for protection under the Endangered Species Act.

The flower is found only on a certain portion of Ute Mountain Ute Tribal land.

The Fish and Wildlife Service considered the rare species for protection in 1996 because of activities that could threaten its limited range.

But the oil and gas development that once seemed to threaten the species is no longer expected to occur within its range, and a recent survey conducted by the tribe showed nearly five times as many of the wildflowers as found in 2000.