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updated: 8/15/2012 5:46 PM

New Illinois, Wisconsin wildlife refuge approved

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Associated Press

A new federal wildlife refuge has been authorized along the border between Illinois and Wisconsin.

U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar on Wednesday announced the establishment of Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge in southeastern Wisconsin and northeastern Illinois. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will create the refuge by purchasing land easements from willing sellers. The goal is to create up to 11,200 acres of wildlife habitat and recreational space close to Milwaukee, Madison and Chicago.

The refuge will be home to more than 100 species of animals and plants. It will be one of the more than 550 wildlife refuges nationwide. The refuge will be officially established when the first parcel of land is purchased.

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