Endangered and Threatened Species; Critical Habitat for Threatened Elkhorn and Staghorn Corals, 12068-12069 [08-973]

Download as PDF 12068 Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 45 / Thursday, March 6, 2008 / Proposed Rules Archipelago of Alaska, British Columbia, Washington, and Oregon to northern Monterey Bay in central California. Birds winter throughout the breeding range and also occur in small numbers off southern California. Marbled murrelets spend most of their lives in the marine environment where they forage in near-shore areas and consume a diversity of prey species including small fish and invertebrates. In their terrestrial environment, the presence of platforms used for nesting is the most important characteristic of the species nesting habitat. Marbled murrelet habitat use is positively associated with the presence and abundance of mature and old-growth forests, large core areas of old-growth, low amounts of edge and fragmentation, proximity to the marine environment, and increasing forest age and height. The marbled murrelet was listed as threatened under the Act on October 1, 1992, (57 FR 45328), and critical habitat was designated on May 24, 1996 (61 FR 26256). On September 12, 2006, we proposed to revise the currently designated critical habitat for the marbled murrelet in Washington, Oregon, and California. In that proposed revision, we proposed to designate 3,590,642 acres (ac) (1,363,300 hectares (ha)) as critical habitat, and to exclude 3,368,950 ac (1,363,300 ha) of these lands under section 4(b)(2) of the Act from the final designation (71 FR 53838). On June 26, 2007, we published a notice in the Federal Register reopening the comment period and announcing the availability of a draft economic analysis on the proposed revision (72 FR 35025). The comment period was once again reopened with the publication of a notice in the Federal Register on September 5, 2007, (72 FR 50929). Finding This notice presents our finding pursuant to section 4(b)(6)(A)(i)(II) of the Act that a final regulation to implement the proposed revision to murrelet critical habitat should not be made at this time. The basis for this finding is described below. rfrederick on PROD1PC67 with PROPOSALS Background The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is currently completing its Western Oregon Plan Revision (WOPR), which will result in revised Resource Management Plans for the Salem, Eugene, Coos Bay, Roseburg, and VerDate Aug<31>2005 16:22 Mar 05, 2008 Jkt 214001 Medford Districts, and the Klamath Falls Resource Area of the Lakeview District Office. We are continuing to work cooperatively with the BLM as they develop their final management plan revisions. We recognize that the revised management plans will have significant effects on future conservation of the species. Due to uncertainties regarding these plan revisions in western Oregon, we have determined that it is not appropriate to revise the designation of critical habitat for the marbled murrelet at this time. We will continue to consider whether revisions of critical habitat for the marbled murrelet may be appropriate at some future point. Accordingly, the May 24, 1996, final rule designating critical habitat for the marbled murrelet remains in effect (61 FR 26256). On April 8, 2002, the American Forest Resource Council (AFRC) filed a lawsuit in the case of AFRC et al. v. Secretary of the Interior, Civ. No. 02–06087 AA (D. OR) challenging the marbled murrelet critical habitat designation that was made on May 24, 1996 (61 FR 26256). The Service entered into a settlement agreement to review the critical habitat designation and make any revisions it deemed appropriate, after a revised consideration of economic and any other relevant impacts of designation. Pursuant to the settlement agreement, the Service published a proposed revision to critical habitat for the marbled murrelet on September 12, 2006 (71 FR 53838), which included minor adjustments to the original designation and proposed several exclusions under section 4(b)(2) of the Act. The Service also developed an economic analysis that was consistent with New Mexico Cattle Growers Association v. USFWS, 248 F.3d 1277 (10th Cir. 2001), but because of the reasons discussed above, the Service will not be relying on this analysis to finalize critical habitat at this time. The above actions and the publication of this Federal Register notice complete the Service’s obligations under the settlement agreement. In summary, due to the uncertainty regarding the effects of current BLM Resource Management Plan revisions, we find that it is not appropriate to revise critical habitat at this time, and therefore that the proposed revision of critical habitat for the marbled murrelet should not be made. Accordingly, the PO 00000 Frm 00037 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 May 24, 1996, final rule designating critical habitat for the marbled murrelet remains in effect (61 FR 26256). Author(s) The authors of this document are the staff of the Pacific Regional Office, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Authority The authority for this action is the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.). Dated: February 27, 2008. Lyle Laverty, Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks. [FR Doc. E8–4318 Filed 3–5–08; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–55–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 226 RIN 0648-AV35 Endangered and Threatened Species; Critical Habitat for Threatened Elkhorn and Staghorn Corals National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Proposed rule; correction. AGENCY: SUMMARY: This document corrects a map in the regulatory language of a proposed rule published in the Federal Register of February 6, 2008. This correction makes the map of the Florida area of critical habitat for elkhorn and staghorn corals consistent with the textual description. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jennifer Moore or Sarah Heberling at 727–824–5312; or Marta Nammack at 301–713–1401. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Correction In proposed rule FR Doc. 08 497, beginning on page 6895 in the issue of February 6, 2008, make the following correction, in the Regulatory Language section. On page 6912, replace the map labeled ‘‘Critical Habitat for Elkhorn and Staghorn Corals, Area 1: Florida’’ with the following map: E:\FR\FM\06MRP1.SGM 06MRP1 Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 45 / Thursday, March 6, 2008 / Proposed Rules Dated: February 29, 2008. John Oliver, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Operations, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 08–973 Filed 3–5–08; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–C VerDate Aug<31>2005 16:22 Mar 05, 2008 Jkt 214001 PO 00000 Frm 00038 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 E:\FR\FM\06MRP1.SGM 06MRP1 EP06mr08.003</GPH> rfrederick on PROD1PC67 with PROPOSALS BILLING CODE 3510–22–S 12069

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 45 (Thursday, March 6, 2008)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 12068-12069]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 08-973]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 226

RIN 0648-AV35


Endangered and Threatened Species; Critical Habitat for 
Threatened Elkhorn and Staghorn Corals

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

ACTION: Proposed rule; correction.

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SUMMARY: This document corrects a map in the regulatory language of a 
proposed rule published in the Federal Register of February 6, 2008. 
This correction makes the map of the Florida area of critical habitat 
for elkhorn and staghorn corals consistent with the textual 
description.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jennifer Moore or Sarah Heberling at 
727-824-5312; or Marta Nammack at 301-713-1401.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Correction

    In proposed rule FR Doc. 08 497, beginning on page 6895 in the 
issue of February 6, 2008, make the following correction, in the 
Regulatory Language section. On page 6912, replace the map labeled 
``Critical Habitat for Elkhorn and Staghorn Corals, Area 1: Florida'' 
with the following map:

[[Page 12069]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP06MR08.003

BILLING CODE 3510-22-S

    Dated: February 29, 2008.
John Oliver,
Deputy Assistant Administrator for Operations, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 08-973 Filed 3-5-08; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-C