Kansas governor plans action on prairie chickens

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _ Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is preparing to announce new
responses to the federal government's listing of the lesser prairie chicken as a
threatened species.

Brownback has scheduled a news conference for Tuesday afternoon at the Great
Plains Nature Center in Wichita.

His office says he will outline steps to preserve the bird's habitat while
protecting the rights of businesses and landowners. It did not provide details.

A new state law that took effect last month declares that the federal
government has no authority to regulate prairie chickens or their habitats.

Federal officials say the lesser prairie chicken's listing in March was
prompted by a steep decline in its numbers in recent years. But Kansas officials
worry the federal government will restrict farming, ranching and oil and natural
gas production.

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