Groups want protections restored for Louisiana black bear
NEW ORLEANS- Some environmental groups say they plan legal action to force federal officials to return the Louisiana black bear back to a list of threatened species.
Officials announced removal of the bear from the list in March 2016 - a move opposed by some conservationists.
The Washington-based Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility released copies Thursday of its letter to the Interior Department, announcing plans to sue unless the department's Fish and Wildlife Service restores federal protections. Other groups involved include the Sierra Club's Delta Chapter.
The letter says scientific data were neglected when the bear and its habitat were removed from Endangered Species Act protections.
Fish and Wildlife Service spokesman Phil Kloer said the service by stands by the "de-listing" decision. He declined comment on points in PEER's lawsuit notice.