Federal wildlife officials plan to dispatch hunters into forests of the Pacific Northwest starting this fall to shoot one species of owl to protect another that is threatened with extinction.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Tuesday released a final environmental review of an experiment to see if killing barred owls will allow northern spotted owls to reclaim territory they’ve been driven out of over the past half-century.

The agency has been evaluating the idea since 2009, gathering public comment and consulting ethicists, focus groups and scientific studies. It will issue a final decision on the plan in a month.