Petition filed to protect Yellowstone bison - KFBB.com News, Sports and Weather

Petition filed to protect Yellowstone bison

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BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) - Wildlife advocates have filed a formal petition seeking federal protections for Yellowstone National Park's wild bison herds.

Western Watersheds Project and the Buffalo Field Campaign said in Thursday's petition that the park's roughly 4,900 bison, or buffalo, are unique from other bison that have been hybridized with cattle.

They say the Yellowstone animals face numerous threats. That includes a capture and slaughter program that has killed more than 3,600 bison since 2000 to prevent the spread of a disease carried by many bison.

The groups requested an initial ruling within 90 days from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

The Fish and Wildlife Service rejected previous petitions to protect bison as a threatened or endangered species in 2007 and 2011.

Yellowstone National Park includes portions of Wyoming, Montana and Idaho.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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