SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Federal land managers have scrapped plans to spray pesticides near the Rio Chama in northern New Mexico as part of an effort to kill invasive grasshoppers. Concerned residents worried that dispersing 670 gallons of the poison would also kill bees, monarch butterflies and other insects vital to the area’s ecosystem. Although the U.S. Agriculture Department conducted an environmental assessment earlier this year, the Bureau of Land Management announced this week that additional analysis and outreach was needed. The Santa Fe New Mexican reported that recent surveys in the area tallied 35 invasive grasshoppers per square yard, or more than quadruple the eight per yard considered an outbreak and threat to rangeland ecosystems.
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