Marine Mammals and Endangered Species; File Nos. 19225, 19257, 19315, 19674, and 20599, 91920-91921 [2016-30414]

Download as PDF 91920 ACTION: Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 243 / Monday, December 19, 2016 / Notices Notice; receipt of application. Notice is hereby given that Ann Pabst, Ph.D., University of North Carolina Wilmington, Biology and Marine Biology, 601 S. College Road, Wilmington, NC 28403, has applied in due form for a permit to conduct research on marine mammals. DATES: Written, telefaxed, or email comments must be received on or before January 18, 2017. ADDRESSES: The application and related documents are available for review by selecting ‘‘Records Open for Public Comment’’ from the ‘‘Features’’ box on the Applications and Permits for Protected Species (APPS) home page, https://apps.nmfs.noaa.gov, and then selecting File No. 20527 from the list of available applications. These documents are also available upon written request or by appointment in the Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13705, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone (301) 427–8401; fax (301) 713–0376. Written comments on this application should be submitted to the Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, at the address listed above. Comments may also be submitted by facsimile to (301) 713–0376, or by email to NMFS.Pr1Comments@noaa.gov. Please include the File No. in the subject line of the email comment. Those individuals requesting a public hearing should submit a written request to the Chief, Permits and Conservation Division at the address listed above. The request should set forth the specific reasons why a hearing on this application would be appropriate. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Shasta McClenahan or Carrie Hubard, (301) 427–8401. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The subject permit is requested under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (MMPA; 16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216), the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), and the regulations governing the taking, importing, and exporting of endangered and threatened species (50 CFR 222–226). The applicant proposes to take marine mammals to: (1) Document the presence of North Atlantic right (Eubalaena glacialis) and humpback (Megaptera novaeangliae) whales in the midAtlantic, and (2) describe the distribution and abundance of cetaceans within specific regions used for U.S. sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:55 Dec 16, 2016 Jkt 241001 Navy training or other activities. Research activities may occur yearround in the Atlantic Ocean from Delaware Bay to Cape Canaveral, FL, and will include aerial and vessel surveys to conduct counts, photoidentification, photogrammetry, and behavioral observations. ESA-listed species include up to 40 blue (Balaenoptera musculus), 100 fin (B. physalus), 200 North Atlantic right, 40 sei (B. borealis), and 150 sperm (Physeter macrocephalus) whales. Nonlisted species include 100 Cuvier’s beaked (Ziphius cavirostris), 100 false killer (Pseudorca crassidens), 100 Gervais’ beaked (Mesoplodon europaeus), 200 humpback, 50 killer (Orcinus orca), 100 melon-headed (Peponocephala electra), 100 minke (B. acutorostrata), 5,000 pilot (Globicephala spp.), 100 pygmy and dwarf sperm (Kogia spp.), 100 pygmy killer (Feresa attenuata), 100 True’s beaked (M. mirus), and 100 unidentified beaked whales; 5,000 Atlantic spotted (Stenella frontalis), 8,000 bottlenose (Tursiops truncatus), 1,000 Clymene (S. clymene), 1,000 common (Delphinus delphis), 100 Fraser’s (Lagenodelphis hosei), 100 pantropical spotted (S. attenuata), 2,500 Risso’s (Grampus griseus), 500 roughtoothed (Steno bredanensis), 200 spinner (S. longirostris), and 1,000 striped (S. coeruleoalba) dolphins; and 100 harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena). The permit would be valid for 5 years from the date of issuance. In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), an initial determination has been made that the activity proposed is categorically excluded from the requirement to prepare an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement. Concurrent with the publication of this notice in the Federal Register, NMFS is forwarding copies of the application to the Marine Mammal Commission and its Committee of Scientific Advisors. Dated: December 13, 2016. Julia Harrison, Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2016–30415 Filed 12–16–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P PO 00000 Frm 00021 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XE417, 0648–XE061, 0648–XE815, and 0648–XE908 Marine Mammals and Endangered Species; File Nos. 19225, 19257, 19315, 19674, and 20599 National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; issuance of permits. AGENCY: Notice is hereby given that permits have been issued to the following entities: Permit No. 19225: James D. Darling, Ph.D., Whale Trust, P.O. Box 384, Tofino, BC V0R2Z0 Canada; Permit No. 19257: Ann M. Zoidis, Director, Cetos Research Organization, 11 Des Isle Avenue, Bar Harbor, ME 04609; Permit No. 19315: Center for Coastal Studies, Right Whale Ecology Program, 5 Holway Avenue, P.O. Box 1036, Provincetown, MA 02657 [Responsible Party: Richard Delaney]; Permit No. 19674: Scott Kraus, Ph.D., New England Aquarium, Edgerton Research Lab, Central Wharf, Boston MA 02110; and Permit No. 20599: NMFS Southwest Fisheries Science Center, Antarctic Ecosystem Research Division, La Jolla, California [Responsible Party: George Watters, Ph.D.]. ADDRESSES: The permits and related documents are available for review upon written request or by appointment in the Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13705, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone (301) 427–8401; fax (301) 713–0376. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Rosa ´ Gonzalez (File Nos. 19225 and 19257), Carrie Hubard (File Nos. 19225 and 19257), Amy Hapeman (File Nos. 19315 and 19674), and Sara Young (File Nos. 19315, 19674, 20599). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Notices were published in the Federal Register that requests for a permit had been submitted by the above-named applicants. The requested permits have been issued under the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216), the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), and the regulations governing the SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1 sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 243 / Monday, December 19, 2016 / Notices taking, importing, and exporting of endangered and threatened species (50 CFR parts 222–226), as applicable. Permit No. 19225: The requested permit (81 FR 5990, November 1, 2016) authorizes Dr. Darling to use passive acoustic monitoring, active playbacks, suction cup and dart tagging, biopsy sampling, underwater photography/ videography, photo ID and photogrammetry during aerial and vessel surveys to address a variety of questions regarding social organization, behavior, and communication of humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae). Research may occur off Hawaii (primarily off west Maui), and Alaska. Incidental harassment is authorized for the following non-target species: North Pacific right whales (Eubalaena japonica); false killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens); Dall’s porpoises (Phocoenoides dalli); spinner (Stenella longirostris), pantropical spotted (S. attenuata), and bottlenose dolphins (Turisiops truncatus); killer whales (Orcinus orca); Hawaiian monk seals (Neomonachus schauinslandi); harbor seals (Phoca vitulina); and Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus). The permit is valid until October 31, 2021. Permit No. 19257: The requested permit (80 FR 59736, November 1, 2016) authorizes Ms. Zoidis to use passive acoustic monitoring, suction cup tagging, biopsy sampling, underwater photography/videography, and photo ID during vessel surveys in Hawaii and the Mariana Islands (Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands) to address a variety of questions regarding population size, habitat use, and behavior of baleen and odontocete species. The research would target humpback whales and 25 other species of whales and dolphins. Species may undergo all methodologies (except right whales, which will not be tagged). Incidental harassment for all species is also authorized. Research would take place throughout the year. The permit is valid until October 31, 2021. Permit No. 19315: The requested permit (81 FR 59192, August 29, 2016) authorizes researchers to conduct vessel and aerial surveys of North Atlantic right whales (Eubalaena glacialis) and bowhead whales (Balaena mysticetus) opportunistically in Atlantic waters from Maine to New Jersey to gain a better understanding of right whale population status, relationship to habitat conditions, distribution and abundance, movement patterns, and interactions with human activities. Surveys may involve approach for observation, photo-identification, and prey mapping. Up to 16 other species of cetaceans and four species of pinnipeds VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:55 Dec 16, 2016 Jkt 241001 may be incidentally harassed during surveys. The request to suction cup tag a subset of right whales was denied. The permit is valid for five years from the date of issuance. Permit No. 19674: The requested permit (81 FR 59192, August 29, 2016) authorizes Dr. Kraus to conduct vessel and aerial surveys of North Atlantic right whales in U.S. and international waters of the North Atlantic from Florida to Iceland to assess, quantify, and track trends in the demographic characteristics of right whales; and to identify, quantify and monitor the long term trends in anthropogenic impacts on the species. Surveys may involve approach for observation, photoidentification, and biopsy and blow sampling, thermal imaging, passive acoustic recording, collection of sloughed skin and feces, photogrammetry, and/or incidental harassment of right whales. Right whale parts may be received, imported or exported. Humpback whales, harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena), and Atlantic white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus acutus) may be incidentally harassed during vessel surveys. The permit is valid for five years from the date of issuance. Permit No. 20599: The requested permit (81 FR 66928, September 29, 2016) authorizes researchers to take Antarctic fur seals (Arctocephalus gazella), southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina), crabeater seals (Lobodon carcinophagus), leopard seals (Hydrurga leptonyx), Ross seals (Ommatophoca rossii), and Weddell seals (Leptonychotes weddellii) for life history studies and census surveys for abundance and distribution of pinnipeds in the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica, as part of a longterm ecosystem monitoring program established in 1986. The applicant also requests permission to import tissue samples collected from any animals captured and from salvaged carcasses of any species of pinniped or cetacean found in the study area. The permit is valid for five years from the date of issuance. In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), a final determination has been made that the activities proposed are categorically excluded from the requirement to prepare an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement. As required by the ESA, as applicable, issuance of these permit was based on a finding that such permits: (1) Were applied for in good faith; (2) will not operate to the disadvantage of such endangered species; and (3) are PO 00000 Frm 00022 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 91921 consistent with the purposes and policies set forth in section 2 of the ESA. Dated: December 13, 2016. Julia Harrison, Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2016–30414 Filed 12–16–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Programmatic Environmental Assessment National Ocean Service (NOS), NOAA, Department of Commerce. ACTION: Notice of intent to prepare a programmatic environmental assessment; request for Comments. AGENCY: NOAA is issuing this notice to advise the public that NOS is preparing a programmatic environmental assessment (PEA) in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) to evaluate the environmental impacts of NOS hydroacoustic surveys, mapping, and other related data gathering activities. NOS offices that conduct hydroacoustic surveys, mapping, and other related data-gathering activities which may be covered under this PEA include: Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services, National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science, Office of Coast Survey, Office for Coastal Management, Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, Office of Response and Restoration, Office of National Geodetic Survey, and the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System Program Office. The PEA will encompass the environment of all geographic areas where NOS conducts these activities, to include terrestrial areas, but primarily focusing on U.S. waters from the coastline to the limits of the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone, which extends no more than 200 nautical miles from the territorial sea baseline. NOAA provides this notice to advise other Federal and State agencies, Territories, Tribal Governments, local governments, private parties, and the public of our intent to prepare a PEA, to provide information on the nature of the analysis, and to invite input. DATES: Comments must be received by January 18, 2017. ADDRESSES: Comments may be submitted by mail, email, or FAX. Mail: SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 243 (Monday, December 19, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 91920-91921]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-30414]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XE417, 0648-XE061, 0648-XE815, and 0648-XE908


Marine Mammals and Endangered Species; File Nos. 19225, 19257, 
19315, 19674, and 20599

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

ACTION: Notice; issuance of permits.

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

SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that permits have been issued to the 
following entities:
    Permit No. 19225: James D. Darling, Ph.D., Whale Trust, P.O. Box 
384, Tofino, BC V0R2Z0 Canada;
    Permit No. 19257: Ann M. Zoidis, Director, Cetos Research 
Organization, 11 Des Isle Avenue, Bar Harbor, ME 04609;
    Permit No. 19315: Center for Coastal Studies, Right Whale Ecology 
Program, 5 Holway Avenue, P.O. Box 1036, Provincetown, MA 02657 
[Responsible Party: Richard Delaney];
    Permit No. 19674: Scott Kraus, Ph.D., New England Aquarium, 
Edgerton Research Lab, Central Wharf, Boston MA 02110; and
    Permit No. 20599: NMFS Southwest Fisheries Science Center, 
Antarctic Ecosystem Research Division, La Jolla, California 
[Responsible Party: George Watters, Ph.D.].

ADDRESSES: The permits and related documents are available for review 
upon written request or by appointment in the Permits and Conservation 
Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, 
Room 13705, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone (301) 427-8401; fax (301) 
713-0376.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Rosa Gonz[aacute]lez (File Nos. 19225 
and 19257), Carrie Hubard (File Nos. 19225 and 19257), Amy Hapeman 
(File Nos. 19315 and 19674), and Sara Young (File Nos. 19315, 19674, 
20599).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Notices were published in the Federal 
Register that requests for a permit had been submitted by the above-
named applicants. The requested permits have been issued under the 
Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et 
seq.), the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine 
mammals (50 CFR part 216), the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as 
amended (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), and the regulations governing 
the

[[Page 91921]]

taking, importing, and exporting of endangered and threatened species 
(50 CFR parts 222-226), as applicable.
    Permit No. 19225: The requested permit (81 FR 5990, November 1, 
2016) authorizes Dr. Darling to use passive acoustic monitoring, active 
playbacks, suction cup and dart tagging, biopsy sampling, underwater 
photography/videography, photo ID and photogrammetry during aerial and 
vessel surveys to address a variety of questions regarding social 
organization, behavior, and communication of humpback whales (Megaptera 
novaeangliae). Research may occur off Hawaii (primarily off west Maui), 
and Alaska. Incidental harassment is authorized for the following non-
target species: North Pacific right whales (Eubalaena japonica); false 
killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens); Dall's porpoises (Phocoenoides 
dalli); spinner (Stenella longirostris), pantropical spotted (S. 
attenuata), and bottlenose dolphins (Turisiops truncatus); killer 
whales (Orcinus orca); Hawaiian monk seals (Neomonachus schauinslandi); 
harbor seals (Phoca vitulina); and Steller sea lions (Eumetopias 
jubatus). The permit is valid until October 31, 2021.
    Permit No. 19257: The requested permit (80 FR 59736, November 1, 
2016) authorizes Ms. Zoidis to use passive acoustic monitoring, suction 
cup tagging, biopsy sampling, underwater photography/videography, and 
photo ID during vessel surveys in Hawaii and the Mariana Islands (Guam 
and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands) to address a 
variety of questions regarding population size, habitat use, and 
behavior of baleen and odontocete species. The research would target 
humpback whales and 25 other species of whales and dolphins. Species 
may undergo all methodologies (except right whales, which will not be 
tagged). Incidental harassment for all species is also authorized. 
Research would take place throughout the year. The permit is valid 
until October 31, 2021.
    Permit No. 19315: The requested permit (81 FR 59192, August 29, 
2016) authorizes researchers to conduct vessel and aerial surveys of 
North Atlantic right whales (Eubalaena glacialis) and bowhead whales 
(Balaena mysticetus) opportunistically in Atlantic waters from Maine to 
New Jersey to gain a better understanding of right whale population 
status, relationship to habitat conditions, distribution and abundance, 
movement patterns, and interactions with human activities. Surveys may 
involve approach for observation, photo-identification, and prey 
mapping. Up to 16 other species of cetaceans and four species of 
pinnipeds may be incidentally harassed during surveys. The request to 
suction cup tag a subset of right whales was denied. The permit is 
valid for five years from the date of issuance.
    Permit No. 19674: The requested permit (81 FR 59192, August 29, 
2016) authorizes Dr. Kraus to conduct vessel and aerial surveys of 
North Atlantic right whales in U.S. and international waters of the 
North Atlantic from Florida to Iceland to assess, quantify, and track 
trends in the demographic characteristics of right whales; and to 
identify, quantify and monitor the long term trends in anthropogenic 
impacts on the species. Surveys may involve approach for observation, 
photo-identification, and biopsy and blow sampling, thermal imaging, 
passive acoustic recording, collection of sloughed skin and feces, 
photogrammetry, and/or incidental harassment of right whales. Right 
whale parts may be received, imported or exported. Humpback whales, 
harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena), and Atlantic white-sided dolphins 
(Lagenorhynchus acutus) may be incidentally harassed during vessel 
surveys. The permit is valid for five years from the date of issuance.
    Permit No. 20599: The requested permit (81 FR 66928, September 29, 
2016) authorizes researchers to take Antarctic fur seals (Arctocephalus 
gazella), southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina), crabeater seals 
(Lobodon carcinophagus), leopard seals (Hydrurga leptonyx), Ross seals 
(Ommatophoca rossii), and Weddell seals (Leptonychotes weddellii) for 
life history studies and census surveys for abundance and distribution 
of pinnipeds in the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica, as part of a 
long-term ecosystem monitoring program established in 1986. The 
applicant also requests permission to import tissue samples collected 
from any animals captured and from salvaged carcasses of any species of 
pinniped or cetacean found in the study area. The permit is valid for 
five years from the date of issuance.
    In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 
(42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), a final determination has been made that the 
activities proposed are categorically excluded from the requirement to 
prepare an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement.
    As required by the ESA, as applicable, issuance of these permit was 
based on a finding that such permits: (1) Were applied for in good 
faith; (2) will not operate to the disadvantage of such endangered 
species; and (3) are consistent with the purposes and policies set 
forth in section 2 of the ESA.

    Dated: December 13, 2016.
Julia Harrison,
Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected 
Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2016-30414 Filed 12-16-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P