Receipt of an Application for Incidental Take Permit (1529), 19733-19734 [05-7516]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 71 / Thursday, April 14, 2005 / Notices directed to Mark R. Millikin, Department of Commerce, F/SF3, Room 13357, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910–3282 (phone 301–713–2341, ext.153) or via the Internet at Mark.Millikin@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Abstract Under the provisions of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.), as amended by the Sustainable Fisheries Act (Pub. L. 104– 297), the Secretary of Commerce is required to publish a list of all fisheries under authority of each Regional Fishery Management Council (Council) and all fishing gear used in such fisheries. The list has been published. Any person wishing to use gear not on the list, or engage in a fishery not on the list, must provide the appropriate Council or the Secretary, in the case of Atlantic highly migratory species, with 90 days of advance notice. If the Secretary takes no action to prohibit such a fishery or use of such gear, the person may proceed. II. Method of Collection The respondent provides written notice. No form is used. III. Data OMB Number: 0648–0346. Form Number: None. Type of Review: Regular submission. Affected Public: Business or other forprofits organizations. Estimated Number of Respondents: 20. Estimated Time Per Response: 90 minutes. Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 30 hours. Estimated Total Annual Cost to Public: $200. IV. Request for Comments Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden (including hours and cost) of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or VerDate jul<14>2003 19:36 Apr 13, 2005 Jkt 205001 19733 included in the request for OMB approval of this information collection; they also will become a matter of public record. application is available for download and review at http:// www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/ review.htm. Dated: April 8, 2005. Gwellnar Banks, Management Analyst, Office of the Chief Information Officer. [FR Doc. 05–7472 Filed 4–13–05; 8:45 am] FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Therese Conant (ph. 301–713–1401, fax 301–427–2522, e-mail Therese.Conant@noaa.gov). Comments received will also be available for public inspection, by appointment, during normal business hours by calling 301– 713–1401. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 9 of the ESA and Federal regulations prohibit the ‘‘taking’’ of a species listed as endangered or threatened. The term ‘‘take’’ is defined under the ESA to mean harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or collect, or to attempt to engage in any such conduct. NMFS may issue permits, under limited circumstances, to take listed species incidental to, and not the purpose of, otherwise lawful activities. Section 10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA provides for authorizing incidental take of listed species. NMFS regulations governing permits for threatened and endangered species are promulgated at 50 CFR 222.307. BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [I.D. 040805D] Receipt of an Application for Incidental Take Permit (1529) National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Commerce. ACTION: Notice of availability. AGENCY: SUMMARY: NMFS has received an application for an incidental take permit (Permit) from David N. Hata, Ph.D., Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA). As required by the ESA, the application includes a conservation plan designed to minimize and mitigate any such take of endangered or threatened species. The Permit application is for the incidental take of ESA-listed sea turtles, shortnose sturgeon, smalltooth sawfish, and Atlantic salmon associated with otherwise lawful research to assess horseshoe crab abundance from Cape Cod, Massachusetts south to the Georgia-Florida border. The duration of the proposed Permit is for 6 years. NMFS is furnishing this notice in order to allow other agencies and the public an opportunity to review and comment on this document. All comments received will become part of the public record and will be available for review. DATES: Written comments from interested parties on the Permit application and Plan must be received at the appropriate address or fax number (see ADDRESSES) no later than 5 p.m. Eastern daylight time on May 16, 2005. ADDRESSES: Requests for copies of the application, cited literature, and written comments on this action should be addressed to Therese Conant, Marine Mammal and Turtle Division, NMFS Office of Protected Resources, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD, 20910; or by fax (301) 427–2522, or by e-mail at: NMFS.1529@noaa.gov. The PO 00000 Frm 00007 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Species Covered in This Notice The following species are included in the conservation plan and Permit application: Loggerhead (Caretta caretta), green (Chelonia mydas), leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea), hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata), and Kemp’s ridley (Lepidochelys kempii) sea turtles. Other species that may be affected are: Shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum), smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata), and Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar). Background NMFS received an application from Dr. Hata on April 2, 2004. Based on a review of the application, NMFS determined that the application was incomplete and requested further information. The applicant submitted a revised application on January 10, 2005. The application is for incidental take of ESA-listed species that may result from proposed research. The proposed research activity will consist of annual horseshoe crab abundance monitoring surveys and associated studies to evaluate survey methodology. The annual trawl surveys will provide abundance, distribution and demographic information in support of the horseshoe crab Fishery Management Plan of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission. The surveys will be conducted from Cape Cod, Massachusetts to the Georgia-Florida E:\FR\FM\14APN1.SGM 14APN1 19734 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 71 / Thursday, April 14, 2005 / Notices border. Sampling consists of approximately 48 days at sea for a total of 250 tows deploying flounder and whelk trawls intended to capture horseshoe crabs for examination and enumeration. Tows will be no longer than 15 minutes of bottom time and will be conducted at night from mid-August through mid-November. Turtle excluder devices will not be installed in the trawl gear because these devices may hinder capture of horseshoe crabs. Thus, it is anticipated that fish and sea turtles will be captured by the unmodified gears. The application anticipates the annual capture of one lethal or non-lethal leatherback, one lethal or non-lethal green, 12 lethal and 28 non-lethal loggerheads, 4 lethal and 9 non-lethal Kemp’s ridley sea turtles in 48 days of sampling. The lethal take numbers are based on a 29 percent mortality rate which is the higher rate published for trawl fisheries (Henwood and Stuntz, 1987; Epperly et al., 1995). However, those rates are based on commercial fishing conditions where trawl tow times often exceed 60 minutes. The tow times described in the application will not exceed a 15 minute bottom time— a submergence period that sea turtles are able to survive. Thus, the mortality rate is likely much lower then 29 percent. Conservation Plan The conservation plan prepared by the applicant describes measures designed to monitor, minimize, and mitigate the incidental takes of ESAlisted sea turtles. The conservation plan includes limiting sampling effort in areas and times where sea turtles are likely to be present; avoiding coral and rock habitats associated with hawksbills and areas of submerged aquatic vegetation associated with green turtles; using minimal tow durations; avoiding areas of high fishing vessel activity which may attract foraging sea turtles and may increase the chance of multiple captures. All activities will be conducted under the direct supervision of scientific parties from Virginia Tech. Sampling will not be conducted when sea turtles are observed in the area. If a sea turtle is captured, all efforts will be made to release the turtle as quickly as possible with minimal trauma. If necessary, resuscitation will be attempted as proscribed by 50 CFR 223.206. Scientific parties will be familiarized with resuscitation techniques prior to surveys, and a copy of the resuscitation guidelines will be carried aboard the vessel during survey activities. In the event resuscitation is unsuccessful, the sea turtle will be transferred to the sea VerDate jul<14>2003 19:36 Apr 13, 2005 Jkt 205001 turtle stranding network of the appropriate jurisdiction. Other monitoring or mitigation actions will be undertaken as required. The applicant considered and rejected three other alternatives, not applying for a permit, conducting the research in an area where ESA-listed species do not occur, or using different sampling gear when developing their conservation plan. This notice is provided pursuant to section 10(c) of the ESA and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) regulations (40 CFR 1506.6). NMFS will evaluate the application, associated documents, and comments submitted thereon to determine whether the application meets the requirements of the NEPA regulations and section 10(a) of the ESA. If it is determined that the requirements are met, a permit will be issued for incidental takes of ESAlisted sea turtles under the jurisdiction of NMFS. The final NEPA and permit determinations will not be completed until after the end of the 30–day comment period and will fully consider all public comments received during the comment period. NMFS will publish a record of its final action in the Federal Register. Dated: April 11, 2005. P. Michael Payne, Chief, Marine Mammal and Turtle Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 05–7516 Filed 4–13–05; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–S DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [I.D. 041105C] Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Meetings National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of public meeting. AGENCY: SUMMARY: The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) and its Atlantic Mackerel Committee; its Research Set-Aside Committee; its Surfclam and Ocean Quahog Committee; its Ecosystems Committee; and, its Executive Committee will hold public meetings. DATES: The meetings will be held Monday, May 2, 2005 through Thursday, May 5, 2005. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for specific dates and times of the meetings. PO 00000 Frm 00008 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 This meeting will be at the Princess Royale Oceanfront Hotel and Conference Center, 9100 Coastal Highway, Ocean City, MD 21842 telephone 410–524–2544. Council address: Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 300 S. New Street, Dover, DE 19904, telephone 302– 674–2331. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Daniel T. Furlong, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council; telephone: 302–674–2331, ext. 19. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: ADDRESSES: Dates and Times for the Meetings On Monday, May 2, the Atlantic Mackerel Committee with its Advisory Panel will meet from 1–5 p.m. On Tuesday, May 3, the Atlantic Mackerel Committee will meet from 8a.m.-5 p.m.; the Research Set-Aside Committee will meet from 1–2 p.m.; and, the Surfclam and Ocean Quahog Committee with its Advisory Panel will meet from 2–4 p.m. On Wednesday, May 4, the Ecosystems Committee will meet from 8–10 a.m., and the Council will convene at 10 a.m. From 10 a.m. through 12 noon, Council will approve the March Council meeting minutes and action items from the March Council meeting, hear organizational and liaison reports, hear the Executive Director’s Report, and hear a report on the status of the Council’s Fishery Management Plans (FMP). From 1–5 p.m., Council will address Amendment 14 and Framework 6 to the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass FMP; address Amendment 9 to the Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, Butterfish FMP; and, discuss Framework 1 to the Spiny Dogfish FMP. On Thursday, May 5, the Executive Committee will meet from 8–9 a.m. Council will convene at 9 a.m., and from 9–11 a.m., Council will receive presentations from individuals affiliated with NMFS and the University of Rhode Island (URI). At 11 a.m. the Council will receive committee reports and entertain any new and/or continuing business. Agenda items for the Council’s committees and the Council itself are: on Monday, May 2, the Atlantic Mackerel Committee and its advisors will review and discuss comments received regarding a controlled/limited access system for mackerel. On Tuesday, May 3, the Atlantic Mackerel Committee will continue to review and discuss comments regarding a controlled/limited access system for mackerel. The Research Set-Aside Committee will review 2006 Request for Proposals (RFP), and review and comment on changes to NOAA’s grant E:\FR\FM\14APN1.SGM 14APN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 70, Number 71 (Thursday, April 14, 2005)]
[Notices]
[Pages 19733-19734]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 05-7516]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

[I.D. 040805D]


Receipt of an Application for Incidental Take Permit (1529)

AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration, Commerce.

ACTION: Notice of availability.

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

SUMMARY: NMFS has received an application for an incidental take permit 
(Permit) from David N. Hata, Ph.D., Virginia Polytechnic Institute and 
State University (Virginia Tech) pursuant to the Endangered Species Act 
of 1973, as amended (ESA). As required by the ESA, the application 
includes a conservation plan designed to minimize and mitigate any such 
take of endangered or threatened species. The Permit application is for 
the incidental take of ESA-listed sea turtles, shortnose sturgeon, 
smalltooth sawfish, and Atlantic salmon associated with otherwise 
lawful research to assess horseshoe crab abundance from Cape Cod, 
Massachusetts south to the Georgia-Florida border. The duration of the 
proposed Permit is for 6 years. NMFS is furnishing this notice in order 
to allow other agencies and the public an opportunity to review and 
comment on this document. All comments received will become part of the 
public record and will be available for review.

DATES: Written comments from interested parties on the Permit 
application and Plan must be received at the appropriate address or fax 
number (see ADDRESSES) no later than 5 p.m. Eastern daylight time on 
May 16, 2005.

ADDRESSES: Requests for copies of the application, cited literature, 
and written comments on this action should be addressed to Therese 
Conant, Marine Mammal and Turtle Division, NMFS Office of Protected 
Resources, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD, 20910; or by fax 
(301) 427-2522, or by e-mail at: NMFS.1529@noaa.gov. The application is 
available for download and review at http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/
permits/review.htm.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Therese Conant (ph. 301-713-1401, fax 
301-427-2522, e-mail Therese.Conant@noaa.gov). Comments received will 
also be available for public inspection, by appointment, during normal 
business hours by calling 301-713-1401.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 9 of the ESA and Federal regulations 
prohibit the ``taking'' of a species listed as endangered or 
threatened. The term ``take'' is defined under the ESA to mean harass, 
harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or collect, or 
to attempt to engage in any such conduct. NMFS may issue permits, under 
limited circumstances, to take listed species incidental to, and not 
the purpose of, otherwise lawful activities. Section 10(a)(1)(B) of the 
ESA provides for authorizing incidental take of listed species. NMFS 
regulations governing permits for threatened and endangered species are 
promulgated at 50 CFR 222.307.

Species Covered in This Notice

    The following species are included in the conservation plan and 
Permit application: Loggerhead (Caretta caretta), green (Chelonia 
mydas), leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea), hawksbill (Eretmochelys 
imbricata), and Kemp's ridley (Lepidochelys kempii) sea turtles. Other 
species that may be affected are: Shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser 
brevirostrum), smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata), and Atlantic 
salmon (Salmo salar).

Background

    NMFS received an application from Dr. Hata on April 2, 2004. Based 
on a review of the application, NMFS determined that the application 
was incomplete and requested further information. The applicant 
submitted a revised application on January 10, 2005. The application is 
for incidental take of ESA-listed species that may result from proposed 
research. The proposed research activity will consist of annual 
horseshoe crab abundance monitoring surveys and associated studies to 
evaluate survey methodology. The annual trawl surveys will provide 
abundance, distribution and demographic information in support of the 
horseshoe crab Fishery Management Plan of the Atlantic States Marine 
Fisheries Commission. The surveys will be conducted from Cape Cod, 
Massachusetts to the Georgia-Florida

[[Page 19734]]

border. Sampling consists of approximately 48 days at sea for a total 
of 250 tows deploying flounder and whelk trawls intended to capture 
horseshoe crabs for examination and enumeration. Tows will be no longer 
than 15 minutes of bottom time and will be conducted at night from mid-
August through mid-November. Turtle excluder devices will not be 
installed in the trawl gear because these devices may hinder capture of 
horseshoe crabs. Thus, it is anticipated that fish and sea turtles will 
be captured by the unmodified gears. The application anticipates the 
annual capture of one lethal or non-lethal leatherback, one lethal or 
non-lethal green, 12 lethal and 28 non-lethal loggerheads, 4 lethal and 
9 non-lethal Kemp's ridley sea turtles in 48 days of sampling. The 
lethal take numbers are based on a 29 percent mortality rate which is 
the higher rate published for trawl fisheries (Henwood and Stuntz, 
1987; Epperly et al., 1995). However, those rates are based on 
commercial fishing conditions where trawl tow times often exceed 60 
minutes. The tow times described in the application will not exceed a 
15 minute bottom time--a submergence period that sea turtles are able 
to survive. Thus, the mortality rate is likely much lower then 29 
percent.

Conservation Plan

    The conservation plan prepared by the applicant describes measures 
designed to monitor, minimize, and mitigate the incidental takes of 
ESA-listed sea turtles. The conservation plan includes limiting 
sampling effort in areas and times where sea turtles are likely to be 
present; avoiding coral and rock habitats associated with hawksbills 
and areas of submerged aquatic vegetation associated with green 
turtles; using minimal tow durations; avoiding areas of high fishing 
vessel activity which may attract foraging sea turtles and may increase 
the chance of multiple captures.
    All activities will be conducted under the direct supervision of 
scientific parties from Virginia Tech. Sampling will not be conducted 
when sea turtles are observed in the area. If a sea turtle is captured, 
all efforts will be made to release the turtle as quickly as possible 
with minimal trauma. If necessary, resuscitation will be attempted as 
proscribed by 50 CFR 223.206. Scientific parties will be familiarized 
with resuscitation techniques prior to surveys, and a copy of the 
resuscitation guidelines will be carried aboard the vessel during 
survey activities. In the event resuscitation is unsuccessful, the sea 
turtle will be transferred to the sea turtle stranding network of the 
appropriate jurisdiction. Other monitoring or mitigation actions will 
be undertaken as required.
    The applicant considered and rejected three other alternatives, not 
applying for a permit, conducting the research in an area where ESA-
listed species do not occur, or using different sampling gear when 
developing their conservation plan.
    This notice is provided pursuant to section 10(c) of the ESA and 
the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) regulations (40 CFR 
1506.6). NMFS will evaluate the application, associated documents, and 
comments submitted thereon to determine whether the application meets 
the requirements of the NEPA regulations and section 10(a) of the ESA. 
If it is determined that the requirements are met, a permit will be 
issued for incidental takes of ESA-listed sea turtles under the 
jurisdiction of NMFS. The final NEPA and permit determinations will not 
be completed until after the end of the 30-day comment period and will 
fully consider all public comments received during the comment period. 
NMFS will publish a record of its final action in the Federal Register.

    Dated: April 11, 2005.
P. Michael Payne,
Chief, Marine Mammal and Turtle Division, Office of Protected 
Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 05-7516 Filed 4-13-05; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-S