Federal wildlife managers are stepping into uncharted territory and are asking social media users for help in naming what will be one of the nation's newest urban wildlife refuges.
The refuge in New Mexico has yet to be formally established, but the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Southwest Region is getting a jump on things by asking people to suggest names on its Facebook page.
Voting started Friday and the list of suggestions has grown.
The favorites include Valle de Oro — Spanish for Valley of Gold — National Wildlife Refuge.
The U.S. Forest Service is proposing a prescribed burn in the Pecos Wilderness near Santa Fe to reduce the possibility that a wildfire could severely damage the city's watershed.
The Espanola Ranger District of the Santa Fe National Forest has scheduled a meeting Sept. 20 to gather public comments and provide more information about the proposal to burn 2,900 acres in the wilderness area upstream from McClure Reservoir, which is east of Santa Fe and stores water for the city.
Animal conservationists are worried that hundreds of Gunnison's prairie dogs relocated from the city of Santa Fe to the El Malpais National Conservation Area in west-central New Mexico could become targets for shooters.
The nonprofit environmental group WildEarth Guardians is asking the Bureau of Land Management to consider restrictions on recreational shooting in the prairie dog relocation spot.
University of New Mexico professors and researchers have been awarded funding from the National Institutes of Health to implement a science enrichment program for several middle schools in rural New Mexico.
The funding will be doled out over five years and will target both tribal and predominantly Hispanic schools.
The university says there's a steady decline in the number of American Indian and Hispanic students graduating with science and engineering degrees.
Soil issues have caused a delay in construction of a new 65,000-square-foot casino for the Downs of Albuquerque.
General manager Darren White says the building now will open about a month later than planned, early in the second quarter next year. He says engineers had found some areas where soil was not compacted deeply enough to meet specifications.
The construction also is expected to impact parking at the upcoming New Mexico State Fair.
A state Livestock Board official says an inspector took appropriate action when he was told about four dying horses at a Las Lunas auction. But the inspector has been reprimanded for how he dealt with animal rescue group members.
Livestock Board Executive Director Myles Culbertson tells the Albuquerque Journal that inspector B.J. Winchester is back on the job.