Conservationists are having a mixed reaction to a proposal from federal wildlife officials to protect critical habitats of endangered garter snakes in Arizona and New Mexico.
The Center for Biological Diversity said Monday the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s proposition is somewhat of a relief. One of the group’s attorneys says the number of acres that would receive protection is far less than previously stated. Under the proposal, more than 18,700 acres of critical habitat for narrow-headed garter snakes and nearly 27,800 acres for the northern Mexican garter snake would be safeguarded across both states. Conservationists say both snake species have been on the brink of extinction for years.