Texas Salamanders Eyed For Endangered List

AUSTIN (AP) – Federal officials have proposed adding four Central Texas salamander species for the endangered species list and designated 6,000 acres of Central Texas as critical habitat.

The Austin American-Statesman reports the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposes protecting the Austin blind salamander, the Jollyville plateau salamander, the Georgetown salamander and the Salado salamander.

Some U.S. House members from Central Texas have opposed efforts to protect the species, which would restrict development of the 6,000 acres of habitat if it’s designated as critical to the survival of the species. Those acres are in Travis, Williamson and Bell counties.

Agency officials say conservation of water and springs associated with the area’s Edward Aquifer would nourish that habitat.

Now comes a 60-day public comment period with hearings in Round Rock and Austin.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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