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Bush Supports Status Change For Forest Bird

The Bush administration has taken another step toward removing the marbled murrelet from the threatened species list.

That could ultimately increase logging in old growth forests.

The U-S Fish and Wildlife Service says that marbled murrelets in Oregon, Washington and California should NOT be considered for protection apart from their more abundant cousins in Canada and Alaska.

The marbled murrelet is a seabird that nests in old-growth conifers.

That´s resulted in sharp declines in Northwest logging in the past ten years.

The murrelet still has Endangered Species Act protection on the West Coast.

But Fish and Wildlife will review the bird´s status across its entire range in the lower 48, British Columbia and Alaska.

The agency could then recommend that the murrelet be taken off the threatened species list.