Federal wildlife officials focuse on bats, wind turbines

MADISON (AP) -- Federal wildlife officials are asking the public to weigh in on ways to protect birds and bats from wind turbines in Wisconsin and elsewhere.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with eight states on a plan for habitat conservation. The agency says the goal is to promote clean energy without putting endangered species at risk.

Department spokeswoman Georgia Parham says one solution could be to have wind-energy companies change how they operate turbines. That could include slowing the turbines when bats are near or birds are in a migration pattern.

Another solution could be not to locate wind-energy projects in areas frequented by endangered birds and bats.

The Fish and Wildlife Service is accepting comments until Oct. 1.