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Enviros Seek Protection for Newts and Orchids

WASHINGTON (CN) - The Center for Biological Diversity wants five species of critters, including the striped newt and the Berry Cave salamander, added to the endangered species list, along with two plants: the fast-disappearing Oklahoma Grass Pink orchid and Ozark Chinquapin tree.

In its federal complaint, the group says the government failed to rule on protection for the species within the 12-month deadline set by the Endangered Species Act.

The group also seeks protection for the Llanero Coqui frog; the least chub, a minnow from Utah; the Puerto Rico harlequin butterfly; and the Bay Springs salamander.

It says the plants and animals are at risk of extinction "due to habitat degradation and destruction, climate change, and other threats."

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