A federal judge signed off this monthon an agreement between conservation groups and the U.S. Forest Service to update protections for rare species that depend on old growth forests tolive.
U.S. District Court Judge John Coughenour in Seattle signed the agreement, which restores protections the Bush administration had dismantled to increase timber production on federal forests in theNorthwest.

The protections, known as the survey and manage rule, require the Forest Service to look for rare species ranging from lichens to great grey owls before planning timber sales in old growth forests.


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