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Wed., May 15, 2013, 1:16 p.m.

Franklin County resists federal protection for wildflower

The White Bluffs bladderpod has been named a protected species by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. It grows only on the Hanford Reach and nearby private land in Franklin County.  (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)
The White Bluffs bladderpod has been named a protected species by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. It grows only on the Hanford Reach and nearby private land in Franklin County. (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

NATURE -- Franklin County is considering legal action into the federal government's steps to apply endangered species protections to rare wildflowers found in areas such as the Hanford Reach of the Columbia River.

Franklin County commissioners voted 3-0 Tuesday to hire outside lawyers to look into suing the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service over its pending endangered classification of the yellow-flowering White Bluffs bladderpod, which grows only in a small area along the Columbia River in the county.

The plan calls for designating 2,861 acres of land in Franklin County as critical habitat for the colorful plant that’s part of the cabbage family. Most of that is federal land managed by the Hanford Reach National Monument, but 419 acres is on private land owned by people who say they are concerned.

Read the latest story from the Tri-Cities Herald.



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Rich Landers
Rich Landers joined The Spokesman-Review in 1977. He is the Outdoors editor for the Sports Department writing and photographing stories about hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, conservation, nature and wildlife and related topics.

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