Charleston, W.Va. (AP) -- More than $4 million in federal money will help protect rare bats and perennial herbs that live in West Virginia and Virginia forests.
Congress appropriated $3.67 million in federal forest legacy money to conserve land in the Potomac River's South Branch in West Virginia's eastern panhandle.
Another $490,000 is dedicated to the New River Corridor in western Virginia.
The program provides money for conservation easements from private owners.
West Virginia's land is home to the Virginia big-eared bat and Virginia nailwort.
The state's only native trout species, the brook trout, also live and reproduce in its mountain streams.
Since its creation in 1990, the forestry legacy program has protected nearly 1.85 million acres of land in 42 states.
(Copyright 2009 By The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)