Conservation groups are suing to stop a federal timber sale they say will destroy dwindling habitat for a tiny tree-top dwelling rodent called the red tree vole.
The lawsuit filed Wednesday in federal court in Eugene challenges the Rickard Creek timber sale by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. The land is southwest of Corvallis.
Josh Laughlin of Cascadia Wildlands says the sale represents a return to the dark ages of clear-cut logging of old growth trees after years of focusing on thinning projects that have exceeded timber targets.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has found the red tree vole deserves protection under the Endangered Species Act due to habitat lost to logging and wildfire, but biologists are busy with higher priorities.
The bureau did not immediately return calls.