Agency Information Collection Activities: OMB Control Number 1018-0023; Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program and Migratory Bird Surveys, 27863-27866 [2017-12724]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 116 / Monday, June 19, 2017 / Notices commercial uses within national wildlife refuges which are compatible with the purpose for which an individual refuge was established and the purposes of the NWRS.’’ DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR IV. Request for and Availability of Public Comments Agency Information Collection Activities: OMB Control Number 1018– 0023; Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program and Migratory Bird Surveys We again invite comments concerning this information collection on: • Whether or not the collection of information is necessary, including whether or not the information will have practical utility; • The accuracy of our estimate of the burden for this collection of information; • Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and • Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents. Comments that you submit in response to this notice are a matter of public record. Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment, including your personal identifying information, may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask OMB in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that it will be done. V. Authorities The authorities for this action are the National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966 (16 U.S.C. 668dd–668ee), as amended by the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997; Refuge Recreation Act of 1962 (16 U.S.C. 460k– 460k–4); Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 3101 et seq.); and the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.). asabaliauskas on DSKBBXCHB2PROD with NOTICES Dated: June 14, 2017. Madonna L. Baucum, Information Collection Clearance Officer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS–HQ–MB–2017–N077; FXMB12310900WHO–178–FF09M26000] Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice; request for comments. AGENCY: We (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) will ask the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to approve the information collection (IC) described below. As required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 and as part of our continuing efforts to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, we invite the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on this IC. This IC is scheduled to expire on June 30, 2017. We may not conduct or sponsor and a person is not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. DATES: You must submit comments on or before July 19, 2017. ADDRESSES: Send your comments and suggestions on this information collection to the Desk Officer for the Department of the Interior at OMB– OIRA at (202) 395–5806 (fax) or OIRA_ Submission@omb.eop.gov (email). Please provide a copy of your comments to the Service Information Collection Clearance Officer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, MS: BPHC, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041– 3803 (mail), or Info_Coll@fws.gov (email). Please include ‘‘1018–0023’’ in the subject line of your comments. You may review the ICR online at http:// www.reginfo.gov. Follow the instructions to review Department of the Interior collections under review by OMB. SUMMARY: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: [FR Doc. 2017–12728 Filed 6–16–17; 8:45 am] Service Information Collection Clearance Officer, at info_coll@fws.gov (email) or (703) 358–2503 (telephone). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: BILLING CODE 4333–15–P I. Abstract The Migratory Bird Treaty Act (16 U.S.C. 703–711) and the Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956 (16 U.S.C. 742d) designate the Department of the Interior as the key agency responsible for (1) the wise management of migratory bird populations frequenting the United VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:09 Jun 16, 2017 Jkt 241001 PO 00000 Frm 00082 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 27863 States, and (2) setting hunting regulations that allow appropriate harvests that are within the guidelines that will allow for those populations’ well-being. These responsibilities dictate that we gather accurate data on various characteristics of migratory bird harvest. Based on information from harvest surveys, we can adjust hunting regulations as needed to optimize harvests at levels that provide a maximum of hunting recreation while keeping populations at desired levels. Under 50 CFR 20.20, migratory bird hunters must register for the Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program (HIP) in each State in which they hunt each year. State natural resource agencies must send names and addresses of all migratory bird hunters to Branch of Harvest Surveys, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Division of Migratory Bird Management, on an annual basis. The Migratory Bird Hunter Survey is based on the Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program. We randomly select migratory bird hunters and ask them to report their harvest. The resulting estimates of harvest per hunter are combined with the complete list of migratory bird hunters to provide estimates of the total harvest for the species surveyed. The Parts Collection Survey estimates the species, sex, and age composition of the harvest, and the geographic and temporal distribution of the harvest. Randomly selected successful hunters who responded to the Migratory Bird Hunter Survey the previous year are asked to complete and return a postcard if they are willing to participate in the Parts Collection Survey. We provide postage-paid envelopes to respondents before the hunting season and ask them to send in a wing or the tail feathers from each duck or goose that they harvest, or a wing from each mourning dove, woodcock, band-tailed pigeon, snipe, rail, or gallinule that they harvest. We use the wings and tail feathers to identify the species, sex, and age of the harvested sample. We also ask respondents to report on the envelope the date and location of harvest for each bird. We combine the results of this survey with the harvest estimates obtained from the Migratory Bird Hunter Survey to provide speciesspecific national harvest estimates. The combined results of these surveys enable us to evaluate the effects of season length, season dates, and bag limits on the harvest of each species, and thus help us determine appropriate hunting regulations. The Sandhill Crane Harvest Survey is an annual questionnaire survey of people who obtained a sandhill crane E:\FR\FM\19JNN1.SGM 19JNN1 27864 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 116 / Monday, June 19, 2017 / Notices hunting permit. At the end of the hunting season, we randomly select a sample of permit holders and ask them to report the date, location, and number of birds harvested for each of their sandhill crane hunts. Their responses provide estimates of the temporal and geographic distribution of the harvest as well as the average harvest per hunter, which, combined with the total number of permits issued, enables us to estimate the total harvest of sandhill cranes. Based on information from this survey, we adjust hunting regulations as needed. II. Data OMB Control Number: 1018–0023. Title: Migratory Bird Information Program and Migratory Bird Surveys, 50 CFR 20.20. Service Form Number: FWS Forms 3– 165, 3–165A through E, 3–2056J through N. Number of respondents Activity Type of Request: Revision to a currently approved collection. Description of Respondents: States and migratory game bird hunters. Respondent’s Obligation: Mandatory for HIP registration information; voluntary for participation in the surveys. Frequency of Collection: Annually or on occasion. Number of responses Completion time per response Total annual burden hours * Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program 49 784 157 hours .... 123,088 37,000 23,100 8,900 12,000 37,000 23,100 8,900 12,000 5 4 4 3 minutes minutes minutes minutes .... .... .... .... 3,083 1,540 593 600 4,200 1,000 3,600 400 1,100 900 92,400 5,500 3,600 400 1,100 1,350 5 5 1 1 1 5 minutes .... minutes .... minute ...... minute ...... minute ...... minutes .... 7,700 458 60 7 18 113 Form 3–2056N ................................................................................................... 4,000 4,000 Totals .......................................................................................................... 96,249 190,134 Migratory Bird Hunter Survey Form Form Form Form 3–2056J .................................................................................................... 3–2056K ................................................................................................... 3–2056L .................................................................................................... 3–2056M ................................................................................................... Parts Collection Survey Form Form Form Form Form Form 3–165 ........................................................................................................ 3–165A ..................................................................................................... 3–165B ..................................................................................................... 3–165C ..................................................................................................... 3–165D ..................................................................................................... 3–165E ..................................................................................................... Sandhill Crane Harvest Survey 3.5 minutes ..................... 233 137,493 * Burden hours are rounded asabaliauskas on DSKBBXCHB2PROD with NOTICES III. Comments On February 24, 2017, we published in the Federal Register (82 FR 11603) a notice of our intent to request that OMB renew approval for this information collection. In that notice, we solicited comments for 60 days, ending on April 25, 2017. We received five comments in response to the notice. One commenter objected to the surveys, but did not address the information collection requirements. Therefore, we did not provide a response. The remaining four comments are summarized below, along with the Service responses. Comment 1: Received April 7, 2017, from the Atlantic Flyway Council via email: The Atlantic Flyway Council provided comments in response to the four topics listed below (we have provided our responses following each separate comment from the Atlantic Flyway Council; see ‘‘Service Response’’). VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:20 Jun 16, 2017 Jkt 241001 Comment 1A: Whether or not the collection of information is necessary, including whether or not the information will have practical utility. The Atlantic Flyway commented that the surveys are absolutely critical to the management of migratory birds and maintaining hunting seasons, and that without reliable data on harvest parameters derived from these surveys, our ability to make decisions could result in less than optimal levels of migratory bird populations and decrease in hunting opportunity. They commented that the surveys provide substantial evidence that game bird species are wisely managed, thus preventing meaningful legal challenges against migratory game bird hunting seasons. Service Response to Comment 1A: No response required. Comment 1B: The accuracy of our estimate of the burden for this collection of information. The Atlantic Flyway stated that, while the methodology used to estimate the time burden was not clear, the estimates did not appear to be unreasonable, and that they did not believe the surveys caused a significant burden on respondents. Further, they stated PO 00000 Frm 00083 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 that the necessity to collect the information outweighed the time burden of the survey. Service Response to Comment 1B: No response required. Comment 1C: Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected. The Atlantic Flyway Council stated that they believed these surveys are conducted in a reliable and efficient fashion and employ a methodology that provides accurate and reliable data. They also stated that the use of electronic surveys may allow for an increase in sample size which might increase the reliability and accuracy of the survey and reduce overall costs, as well as reduce the burden on respondents. They encouraged examination of those techniques and were anxious to work with the Service to improve or change the surveys. Service Response to Comment 1C: We are working with the USFWS’s Information Resources and Technology Management (IRTM) to develop an online survey response platform to allow hunters to respond to the diary survey over the Internet, as an alternative to a paper form. This change to our survey platform will not be implemented until the 2018–2019 harvest season at the earliest. We intend to involve the flyways E:\FR\FM\19JNN1.SGM 19JNN1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 116 / Monday, June 19, 2017 / Notices and other stakeholders in the development of this online form to make sure the implementation is smooth and does not increase the burden on survey respondents or impact the integrity of the data we collect. Comment 1D: Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents: The Atlantic Flyway reiterated their comment that they did not believe the surveys caused a significant burden on respondents, but encouraged examination of methods such as electronic surveys, which they said could reduce the burden. Service Response to Comment 1D: See Service response to comment 1C. asabaliauskas on DSKBBXCHB2PROD with NOTICES Comment 2: Received April 17, 2017, from the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish (hereafter NMDGF) via email: The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish provided comments in response to the four topics listed below (see Service response following each comment). Comment 2A: Regarding whether or not the collection of information is necessary, including whether or not the information will have practical utility; whether there are any questions they felt were unnecessary: The NMDGF stated their full support of the continuation of the Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program, the Migratory Bird Hunter Survey, Parts Collection Survey, and the Sandhill Crane Survey. NMDGF stated that the estimates of hunters and harvests from these surveys allow for informed decision making in setting harvest regulations and avoiding overharvest of migratory game birds that could lead to decreased population numbers as well as decreased hunting opportunities and local economic expenditures by hunters within NM. Service Response to Comment 2A: No response required. Comment 2B: Regarding the accuracy of our estimate of burden for this collection of information: The NMDGF noted that the surveys are voluntary, and does not believe they cause significant burden, and that our estimate of the burden is accurate. Service Response to Comment 2B: No response required. Comment 2C: Regarding ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected: The NMDGF believes that the surveys are conducted appropriately, allowing for accurate and usable estimates of the number of hunters and harvests, and allowing New Mexico to evaluate decisions regarding hunting season selections within the Federal hunting frameworks. Service Response to Comment 2C: No response required. Comment 2D: Regarding ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents: The NMDGF stated that, while they do not believe the surveys cause a significant burden, NMDFG encourages critical examination of the current methods to reduce VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:09 Jun 16, 2017 Jkt 241001 burden wherever possible. However, they noted that any changes to the methodology would require appropriate funding and resources for sampling design and development and proper implementation of changes to ensure reliability and usability of the resulting data. Service Response to Comment 2D: In the next several years, we intend to undertake a critical review of the sampling design of this survey, as part of an effort to modernize our overall data management processes. As stated previously in this document, we will also be moving to an online harvest diary form, which should reduce the burden on respondents by making it easier to fill out and submit the form. We fully intend to involve State agency partners in this modification to the survey. Comment 3: Received April 24, 2017, from the Pacific Flyway Council, via email: The Pacific Flyway Council provided comments in response to the 4 topics listed below (see Service Response following each comment). Comment 3A: Whether or not the collection of information is necessary, including whether or not the information will have practical utility: The Pacific Flyway Council stated that the data obtained from these surveys are absolutely critical to the proper management of migratory game birds, and that, without this information, their ability to make appropriate decisions could result in less than optimal migratory bird populations and a decrease in hunting recreation. They also stated that the surveys provide substantial evidence regarding wise management of migratory birds that prevents meaningful legal challenges against migratory bird hunting seasons. Service Response to Comment 3A: No response required. Comment 3B: Regarding the accuracy of our estimate of burden for this collection of information: The Pacific Flyway Council believed the estimates did not appear to be unreasonable, and that the surveys do not cause a significant burden on respondents. Further, they stated that the necessity to collect the information far outweighs the time and effort to collect it. Service Response to Comment 3B: No response required. Comment 3C: Regarding ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected: The Pacific Flyway Council stated they believed the surveys are conducted in an appropriate fashion, but stated that there could be improvements in the approaches and techniques used to increase efficiency and reliability or use new and changing technologies, specifically, that the use of electronic surveys might allow for increase in sample size and increased reliability and accuracy. The flyway council encouraged examination of these techniques and expressed willingness to work with the Service to improve or change the surveys, but noted that these explorations would require PO 00000 Frm 00084 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 27865 appropriate funding for development and implementation. Service Response to Comment 3C: As stated in Service response 2D above, in the next several years, we intend to undertake a critical review of the sampling design of this survey, as part of an effort to modernize our overall data management processes. We will also be moving to an online harvest diary form which should reduce the burden on respondents by making it easier to fill out and submit the form. We fully intend to involve flyway partners in this modification to the survey, which should allow us to increase sample sizes where needed while maintaining reliability and accuracy of the survey. Comment 3D: Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents: The Pacific Flyway Council reiterated that they did not believe the surveys caused a significant burden on respondents, but suggested the use of electronic surveys as a possible way to reduce the burden on respondents. Service Response to Comment 3D: See 3B above. Comment 4: Received April 27, 2017, from the Central Flyway Council, via email: The Central Flyway Council provided comments in response to the four topics listed below (see Service response following each comment). The Council stated that they fully support continuation of the harvest surveys with their current protocol and methodology. Comment 4A: Whether or not the collection of information is necessary, including whether or not the information will have practical utility: The Central Flyway Council stated that the data obtained from these surveys are critical to the scientifically based management of migratory game birds under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and that the four flyway councils (Atlantic, Mississippi, Central, and Pacific) make informed decisions in setting and adjusting harvest regulations with this information. Without this information collection, the Flyway feels that less than optimal hunting regulations could be selected, resulting in a decrease in hunting recreation and local economic expenditures. They also stated that in the Central Flyway 140,000 goose hunters, 200,000 duck hunters, and 370,000 dove hunters spend approximately 3 million days afield, thanks in part to the information collected in these surveys and other Service migratory bird monitoring programs. Service Response to Comment 4A: No response required. Comment 4B: Regarding the accuracy of our estimate of burden for this collection of information: The Central Flyway Council believes the accuracy of the estimates is appropriate based on their experience with migratory bird hunters across 10 States, and that the surveys do not cause a significant burden on respondents. Service Response to Comment 4B: No response required. E:\FR\FM\19JNN1.SGM 19JNN1 27866 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 116 / Monday, June 19, 2017 / Notices asabaliauskas on DSKBBXCHB2PROD with NOTICES Comment 4C: Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected: The Central Flyway Council stated that they believe the surveys are conducted in an appropriate fashion that provides accurate and precise estimates of migratory bird hunter and harvest. They also stated that until alternative methodologies have been developed and vetted, mailing surveys is the sole method for obtaining high-quality information with migratory bird surveys. They noted that this information collection allows individual States to evaluate humandimension decisions (e.g., timing of seasons, boundaries of hunting zones) related to the States’ hunting season selections within the Federal framework for migratory bird seasons. Service Response to Comment 4C: No response required. Comment 4D: Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents: The Central Flyway Council reiterated that they did not believe the surveys caused a significant burden on respondents, but encouraged the examination of methods to reduce the burden of the surveys on respondents, and stated they were willing to work with the Service on any improvements or changes in the future. They further noted that these changes would require appropriate funding for their development and implementation, and also said there is a need to ensure comparability with previous methods. Service Response to Comment 4D: As stated in Service response 2D above, in the next several years, we intend to undertake a critical review of the sampling design of this survey, as part of an effort to modernize our overall data management processes. We will also be moving to an online harvest diary form, which should reduce the burden on respondents by making it easier to fill out and submit the form. We fully intend to involve flyway partners in this modification to the survey, which should allow us to increase sample sizes where needed, while maintaining reliability and accuracy of the survey. IV. Request for and Availability of Public Comments We again invite comments concerning this information collection on: • Whether or not the collection of information is necessary, including whether or not the information will have practical utility; • The accuracy of our estimate of the burden for this collection of information; • Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and • Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents. Comments that you submit in response to this notice are a matter of public record. Before including your address, phone number, email address, VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:09 Jun 16, 2017 Jkt 241001 or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment, including your personal identifying information, may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask OMB in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that it will be done. V. Authorities The authorities for this action are the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (16 U.S.C. 703 et seq.), Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956 (16 U.S.C. 742a–742j), and the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.). Dated: June 14, 2017. Madonna L. Baucum, Information Collection Clearance Officer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. [FR Doc. 2017–12724 Filed 6–16–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4333–15–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS–R7–ES–2017–N057; FF07CAMM00.FX.ES111607MRG02] Agency Information Collection Activities: OMB Control Number 1018– 0066; Marine Mammal Marking, Tagging, and Reporting Certificates, and Registration of Certain Dead Marine Mammal Hard Parts Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice; request for comments. AGENCY: We (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) have sent an Information Collection Request (ICR) to OMB for review and approval. We summarize the ICR below and describe the nature of the collection and the estimated burden and cost. This information collection is scheduled to expire on June 30, 2017. We may not conduct or sponsor and a person is not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. However, under OMB regulations, we may continue to conduct or sponsor this information collection while it is pending at OMB. DATES: You must submit comments on or before July 19, 2017. ADDRESSES: Send your comments and suggestions on this information collection to the Desk Officer for the Department of the Interior at OMB– OIRA at (202) 395–5806 (fax) or OIRA_ DOCKET@OMB.eop.gov (email). Please provide a copy of your comments to the SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00085 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Service Information Collection Clearance Officer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, MS BPHC, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041– 3803 (mail), or info_coll@fws.gov (email). Please include ‘‘1018–0066’’ in the subject line of your comments. You may review the ICR online at http:// www.reginfo.gov. Follow the instructions to review Department of the Interior collections under review by OMB. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Service Information Collection Clearance Officer, at info_coll@fws.gov (email) or (703) 358–2503 (telephone). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Abstract Under section 101(b) of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 (MMPA), as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361– 1407), Alaska Natives residing in Alaska and dwelling on the coast of the North Pacific or Arctic Oceans may harvest polar bears, northern sea otters, and Pacific walruses for subsistence or handicraft purposes. Section 109(i) of the MMPA authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to prescribe marking, tagging, and reporting regulations applicable to the Alaska Native subsistence and handicraft take. On behalf of the Secretary, we implemented regulations at 50 CFR 18.23(f) for Alaska Natives harvesting polar bears, northern sea otters, and Pacific walruses. These regulations enable us to gather data on the Alaska Native subsistence and handicraft harvest and on the biology of polar bears, northern sea otters, and Pacific walruses in Alaska to determine what effect such take may be having on these populations. The regulations also provide us with a means of monitoring the disposition of the harvest to ensure that any commercial use of products created from these species meets the criteria set forth in section 101(b) of the MMPA. We use three forms to collect the information: FWS Form 3–2414 (Polar Bear Tagging Certificates), FWS Form 3–2415 (Walrus Tagging Certificates), and FWS Form 3–2416 (Sea Otter Tagging Certificates). The information we collect includes, but is not limited to: • Date of kill; • Sex of the animal; • Kill location; • Age of the animal (i.e., adult, subadult, cub, or pup); • Form of transportation used to make the kill of polar bears; • Amount of time (i.e., hours/days hunted) spent hunting polar bears; • Type of take (live-killed or beachfound) for walrus; E:\FR\FM\19JNN1.SGM 19JNN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 116 (Monday, June 19, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 27863-27866]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-12724]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

[FWS-HQ-MB-2017-N077; FXMB12310900WHO-178-FF09M26000]


Agency Information Collection Activities: OMB Control Number 
1018-0023; Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program and Migratory 
Bird Surveys

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice; request for comments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: We (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) will ask the Office of 
Management and Budget (OMB) to approve the information collection (IC) 
described below. As required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 and 
as part of our continuing efforts to reduce paperwork and respondent 
burden, we invite the general public and other Federal agencies to take 
this opportunity to comment on this IC. This IC is scheduled to expire 
on June 30, 2017. We may not conduct or sponsor and a person is not 
required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a 
currently valid OMB control number.

DATES: You must submit comments on or before July 19, 2017.

ADDRESSES: Send your comments and suggestions on this information 
collection to the Desk Officer for the Department of the Interior at 
OMB-OIRA at (202) 395-5806 (fax) or OIRA_Submission@omb.eop.gov 
(email). Please provide a copy of your comments to the Service 
Information Collection Clearance Officer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, MS: BPHC, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803 
(mail), or Info_Coll@fws.gov (email). Please include ``1018-0023'' in 
the subject line of your comments. You may review the ICR online at 
http://www.reginfo.gov. Follow the instructions to review Department of 
the Interior collections under review by OMB.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Service Information Collection 
Clearance Officer, at info_coll@fws.gov (email) or (703) 358-2503 
(telephone).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Abstract

    The Migratory Bird Treaty Act (16 U.S.C. 703-711) and the Fish and 
Wildlife Act of 1956 (16 U.S.C. 742d) designate the Department of the 
Interior as the key agency responsible for (1) the wise management of 
migratory bird populations frequenting the United States, and (2) 
setting hunting regulations that allow appropriate harvests that are 
within the guidelines that will allow for those populations' well-
being. These responsibilities dictate that we gather accurate data on 
various characteristics of migratory bird harvest. Based on information 
from harvest surveys, we can adjust hunting regulations as needed to 
optimize harvests at levels that provide a maximum of hunting 
recreation while keeping populations at desired levels.
    Under 50 CFR 20.20, migratory bird hunters must register for the 
Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program (HIP) in each State in which 
they hunt each year. State natural resource agencies must send names 
and addresses of all migratory bird hunters to Branch of Harvest 
Surveys, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Division of Migratory Bird 
Management, on an annual basis.
    The Migratory Bird Hunter Survey is based on the Migratory Bird 
Harvest Information Program. We randomly select migratory bird hunters 
and ask them to report their harvest. The resulting estimates of 
harvest per hunter are combined with the complete list of migratory 
bird hunters to provide estimates of the total harvest for the species 
surveyed.
    The Parts Collection Survey estimates the species, sex, and age 
composition of the harvest, and the geographic and temporal 
distribution of the harvest. Randomly selected successful hunters who 
responded to the Migratory Bird Hunter Survey the previous year are 
asked to complete and return a postcard if they are willing to 
participate in the Parts Collection Survey. We provide postage-paid 
envelopes to respondents before the hunting season and ask them to send 
in a wing or the tail feathers from each duck or goose that they 
harvest, or a wing from each mourning dove, woodcock, band-tailed 
pigeon, snipe, rail, or gallinule that they harvest. We use the wings 
and tail feathers to identify the species, sex, and age of the 
harvested sample. We also ask respondents to report on the envelope the 
date and location of harvest for each bird. We combine the results of 
this survey with the harvest estimates obtained from the Migratory Bird 
Hunter Survey to provide species-specific national harvest estimates.
    The combined results of these surveys enable us to evaluate the 
effects of season length, season dates, and bag limits on the harvest 
of each species, and thus help us determine appropriate hunting 
regulations.
    The Sandhill Crane Harvest Survey is an annual questionnaire survey 
of people who obtained a sandhill crane

[[Page 27864]]

hunting permit. At the end of the hunting season, we randomly select a 
sample of permit holders and ask them to report the date, location, and 
number of birds harvested for each of their sandhill crane hunts. Their 
responses provide estimates of the temporal and geographic distribution 
of the harvest as well as the average harvest per hunter, which, 
combined with the total number of permits issued, enables us to 
estimate the total harvest of sandhill cranes. Based on information 
from this survey, we adjust hunting regulations as needed.

II. Data

    OMB Control Number: 1018-0023.
    Title: Migratory Bird Information Program and Migratory Bird 
Surveys, 50 CFR 20.20.
    Service Form Number: FWS Forms 3-165, 3-165A through E, 3-2056J 
through N.
    Type of Request: Revision to a currently approved collection.
    Description of Respondents: States and migratory game bird hunters.
    Respondent's Obligation: Mandatory for HIP registration 
information; voluntary for participation in the surveys.
    Frequency of Collection: Annually or on occasion.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                          Number of       Number of       Completion time per      Total annual
               Activity                  respondents      responses             response          burden hours *
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                   Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                   49             784  157 hours................         123,088
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                          Migratory Bird Hunter Survey
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form 3-2056J.........................          37,000          37,000  5 minutes................           3,083
Form 3-2056K.........................          23,100          23,100  4 minutes................           1,540
Form 3-2056L.........................           8,900           8,900  4 minutes................             593
Form 3-2056M.........................          12,000          12,000  3 minutes................             600
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Parts Collection Survey
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form 3-165...........................           4,200          92,400  5 minutes................           7,700
Form 3-165A..........................           1,000           5,500  5 minutes................             458
Form 3-165B..........................           3,600           3,600  1 minute.................              60
Form 3-165C..........................             400             400  1 minute.................               7
Form 3-165D..........................           1,100           1,100  1 minute.................              18
Form 3-165E..........................             900           1,350  5 minutes................             113
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                          Sandhill Crane Harvest Survey
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form 3-2056N.........................           4,000           4,000  3.5 minutes..............             233
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Totals...........................          96,249         190,134  .........................         137,493
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
* Burden hours are rounded

III. Comments

    On February 24, 2017, we published in the Federal Register (82 FR 
11603) a notice of our intent to request that OMB renew approval for 
this information collection. In that notice, we solicited comments for 
60 days, ending on April 25, 2017. We received five comments in 
response to the notice. One commenter objected to the surveys, but did 
not address the information collection requirements. Therefore, we did 
not provide a response. The remaining four comments are summarized 
below, along with the Service responses.
    Comment 1: Received April 7, 2017, from the Atlantic Flyway Council 
via email:
    The Atlantic Flyway Council provided comments in response to the 
four topics listed below (we have provided our responses following each 
separate comment from the Atlantic Flyway Council; see ``Service 
Response'').

    Comment 1A: Whether or not the collection of information is 
necessary, including whether or not the information will have 
practical utility.
    The Atlantic Flyway commented that the surveys are absolutely 
critical to the management of migratory birds and maintaining 
hunting seasons, and that without reliable data on harvest 
parameters derived from these surveys, our ability to make decisions 
could result in less than optimal levels of migratory bird 
populations and decrease in hunting opportunity. They commented that 
the surveys provide substantial evidence that game bird species are 
wisely managed, thus preventing meaningful legal challenges against 
migratory game bird hunting seasons.
    Service Response to Comment 1A: No response required.

    Comment 1B: The accuracy of our estimate of the burden for this 
collection of information.
    The Atlantic Flyway stated that, while the methodology used to 
estimate the time burden was not clear, the estimates did not appear 
to be unreasonable, and that they did not believe the surveys caused 
a significant burden on respondents. Further, they stated that the 
necessity to collect the information outweighed the time burden of 
the survey.
    Service Response to Comment 1B: No response required.

    Comment 1C: Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of 
the information to be collected.
    The Atlantic Flyway Council stated that they believed these 
surveys are conducted in a reliable and efficient fashion and employ 
a methodology that provides accurate and reliable data. They also 
stated that the use of electronic surveys may allow for an increase 
in sample size which might increase the reliability and accuracy of 
the survey and reduce overall costs, as well as reduce the burden on 
respondents. They encouraged examination of those techniques and 
were anxious to work with the Service to improve or change the 
surveys.
    Service Response to Comment 1C: We are working with the USFWS's 
Information Resources and Technology Management (IRTM) to develop an 
online survey response platform to allow hunters to respond to the 
diary survey over the Internet, as an alternative to a paper form. 
This change to our survey platform will not be implemented until the 
2018-2019 harvest season at the earliest. We intend to involve the 
flyways

[[Page 27865]]

and other stakeholders in the development of this online form to 
make sure the implementation is smooth and does not increase the 
burden on survey respondents or impact the integrity of the data we 
collect.

    Comment 1D: Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of 
information on respondents:
    The Atlantic Flyway reiterated their comment that they did not 
believe the surveys caused a significant burden on respondents, but 
encouraged examination of methods such as electronic surveys, which 
they said could reduce the burden.
    Service Response to Comment 1D: See Service response to comment 
1C.

    Comment 2: Received April 17, 2017, from the New Mexico Department 
of Game and Fish (hereafter NMDGF) via email:
    The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish provided comments in 
response to the four topics listed below (see Service response 
following each comment).

    Comment 2A: Regarding whether or not the collection of 
information is necessary, including whether or not the information 
will have practical utility; whether there are any questions they 
felt were unnecessary:
    The NMDGF stated their full support of the continuation of the 
Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program, the Migratory Bird 
Hunter Survey, Parts Collection Survey, and the Sandhill Crane 
Survey. NMDGF stated that the estimates of hunters and harvests from 
these surveys allow for informed decision making in setting harvest 
regulations and avoiding overharvest of migratory game birds that 
could lead to decreased population numbers as well as decreased 
hunting opportunities and local economic expenditures by hunters 
within NM.
    Service Response to Comment 2A: No response required.
    Comment 2B: Regarding the accuracy of our estimate of burden for 
this collection of information:
    The NMDGF noted that the surveys are voluntary, and does not 
believe they cause significant burden, and that our estimate of the 
burden is accurate.
    Service Response to Comment 2B: No response required.
    Comment 2C: Regarding ways to enhance the quality, utility, and 
clarity of the information to be collected:
    The NMDGF believes that the surveys are conducted appropriately, 
allowing for accurate and usable estimates of the number of hunters 
and harvests, and allowing New Mexico to evaluate decisions 
regarding hunting season selections within the Federal hunting 
frameworks.
    Service Response to Comment 2C: No response required.

    Comment 2D: Regarding ways to minimize the burden of the 
collection of information on respondents:
    The NMDGF stated that, while they do not believe the surveys 
cause a significant burden, NMDFG encourages critical examination of 
the current methods to reduce burden wherever possible. However, 
they noted that any changes to the methodology would require 
appropriate funding and resources for sampling design and 
development and proper implementation of changes to ensure 
reliability and usability of the resulting data.
    Service Response to Comment 2D: In the next several years, we 
intend to undertake a critical review of the sampling design of this 
survey, as part of an effort to modernize our overall data 
management processes. As stated previously in this document, we will 
also be moving to an online harvest diary form, which should reduce 
the burden on respondents by making it easier to fill out and submit 
the form. We fully intend to involve State agency partners in this 
modification to the survey.

    Comment 3: Received April 24, 2017, from the Pacific Flyway 
Council, via email:
    The Pacific Flyway Council provided comments in response to the 4 
topics listed below (see Service Response following each comment).

    Comment 3A: Whether or not the collection of information is 
necessary, including whether or not the information will have 
practical utility:
    The Pacific Flyway Council stated that the data obtained from 
these surveys are absolutely critical to the proper management of 
migratory game birds, and that, without this information, their 
ability to make appropriate decisions could result in less than 
optimal migratory bird populations and a decrease in hunting 
recreation. They also stated that the surveys provide substantial 
evidence regarding wise management of migratory birds that prevents 
meaningful legal challenges against migratory bird hunting seasons.
    Service Response to Comment 3A: No response required.
    Comment 3B: Regarding the accuracy of our estimate of burden for 
this collection of information:
    The Pacific Flyway Council believed the estimates did not appear 
to be unreasonable, and that the surveys do not cause a significant 
burden on respondents. Further, they stated that the necessity to 
collect the information far outweighs the time and effort to collect 
it.
    Service Response to Comment 3B: No response required.
    Comment 3C: Regarding ways to enhance the quality, utility, and 
clarity of the information to be collected:
    The Pacific Flyway Council stated they believed the surveys are 
conducted in an appropriate fashion, but stated that there could be 
improvements in the approaches and techniques used to increase 
efficiency and reliability or use new and changing technologies, 
specifically, that the use of electronic surveys might allow for 
increase in sample size and increased reliability and accuracy. The 
flyway council encouraged examination of these techniques and 
expressed willingness to work with the Service to improve or change 
the surveys, but noted that these explorations would require 
appropriate funding for development and implementation.
    Service Response to Comment 3C: As stated in Service response 2D 
above, in the next several years, we intend to undertake a critical 
review of the sampling design of this survey, as part of an effort 
to modernize our overall data management processes. We will also be 
moving to an online harvest diary form which should reduce the 
burden on respondents by making it easier to fill out and submit the 
form. We fully intend to involve flyway partners in this 
modification to the survey, which should allow us to increase sample 
sizes where needed while maintaining reliability and accuracy of the 
survey.
    Comment 3D: Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of 
information on respondents:
    The Pacific Flyway Council reiterated that they did not believe 
the surveys caused a significant burden on respondents, but 
suggested the use of electronic surveys as a possible way to reduce 
the burden on respondents.
    Service Response to Comment 3D: See 3B above.

    Comment 4: Received April 27, 2017, from the Central Flyway 
Council, via email:
    The Central Flyway Council provided comments in response to the 
four topics listed below (see Service response following each comment). 
The Council stated that they fully support continuation of the harvest 
surveys with their current protocol and methodology.

    Comment 4A: Whether or not the collection of information is 
necessary, including whether or not the information will have 
practical utility:
    The Central Flyway Council stated that the data obtained from 
these surveys are critical to the scientifically based management of 
migratory game birds under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and that 
the four flyway councils (Atlantic, Mississippi, Central, and 
Pacific) make informed decisions in setting and adjusting harvest 
regulations with this information. Without this information 
collection, the Flyway feels that less than optimal hunting 
regulations could be selected, resulting in a decrease in hunting 
recreation and local economic expenditures. They also stated that in 
the Central Flyway 140,000 goose hunters, 200,000 duck hunters, and 
370,000 dove hunters spend approximately 3 million days afield, 
thanks in part to the information collected in these surveys and 
other Service migratory bird monitoring programs.
    Service Response to Comment 4A: No response required.
    Comment 4B: Regarding the accuracy of our estimate of burden for 
this collection of information:
    The Central Flyway Council believes the accuracy of the 
estimates is appropriate based on their experience with migratory 
bird hunters across 10 States, and that the surveys do not cause a 
significant burden on respondents.
    Service Response to Comment 4B: No response required.

[[Page 27866]]

    Comment 4C: Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of 
the information to be collected:
    The Central Flyway Council stated that they believe the surveys 
are conducted in an appropriate fashion that provides accurate and 
precise estimates of migratory bird hunter and harvest. They also 
stated that until alternative methodologies have been developed and 
vetted, mailing surveys is the sole method for obtaining high-
quality information with migratory bird surveys. They noted that 
this information collection allows individual States to evaluate 
human-dimension decisions (e.g., timing of seasons, boundaries of 
hunting zones) related to the States' hunting season selections 
within the Federal framework for migratory bird seasons.
    Service Response to Comment 4C: No response required.
    Comment 4D: Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of 
information on respondents:
    The Central Flyway Council reiterated that they did not believe 
the surveys caused a significant burden on respondents, but 
encouraged the examination of methods to reduce the burden of the 
surveys on respondents, and stated they were willing to work with 
the Service on any improvements or changes in the future. They 
further noted that these changes would require appropriate funding 
for their development and implementation, and also said there is a 
need to ensure comparability with previous methods.
    Service Response to Comment 4D: As stated in Service response 2D 
above, in the next several years, we intend to undertake a critical 
review of the sampling design of this survey, as part of an effort 
to modernize our overall data management processes. We will also be 
moving to an online harvest diary form, which should reduce the 
burden on respondents by making it easier to fill out and submit the 
form. We fully intend to involve flyway partners in this 
modification to the survey, which should allow us to increase sample 
sizes where needed, while maintaining reliability and accuracy of 
the survey.

IV. Request for and Availability of Public Comments

    We again invite comments concerning this information collection on:
     Whether or not the collection of information is necessary, 
including whether or not the information will have practical utility;
     The accuracy of our estimate of the burden for this 
collection of information;
     Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the 
information to be collected; and
     Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of 
information on respondents.
    Comments that you submit in response to this notice are a matter of 
public record. Before including your address, phone number, email 
address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you 
should be aware that your entire comment, including your personal 
identifying information, may be made publicly available at any time. 
While you can ask OMB in your comment to withhold your personal 
identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that it 
will be done.

V. Authorities

    The authorities for this action are the Migratory Bird Treaty Act 
(16 U.S.C. 703 et seq.), Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956 (16 U.S.C. 742a-
742j), and the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et 
seq.).

    Dated: June 14, 2017.
Madonna L. Baucum,
Information Collection Clearance Officer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-12724 Filed 6-16-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4333-15-P