Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 12-Month Finding on a Petition to List the Western Glacier Stonefly as an Endangered or Threatened Species; Proposed Threatened Species Status for Meltwater Lednian Stonefly and Western Glacier Stonefly, 50360-50363 [2017-23579]

Download as PDF 50360 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 209 / Tuesday, October 31, 2017 / Proposed Rules DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service 50 CFR Part 17 [Docket No. FWS–R6–ES–2016–0086; 4500030113] RIN 1018–BB52 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 12-Month Finding on a Petition to List the Western Glacier Stonefly as an Endangered or Threatened Species; Proposed Threatened Species Status for Meltwater Lednian Stonefly and Western Glacier Stonefly Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Proposed rule; reopening of the comment period. AGENCY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the reopening of the comment period on our October 4, 2016, proposed rule to list the western glacier stonefly (Zapada glacier) and the meltwater lednian stonefly (Lednia tumana) as threatened species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). We are reopening the comment period because we have received additional information about the range of the western glacier stonefly and reopening the comment period will provide the public an opportunity to comment on the additional range information. In August 2016, we received new information on the western glacier stonefly, indicating a larger range than previously known. In March 2017, we again received additional information (separate from the information received in August 2016) regarding the western glacier stonefly range, also indicating a larger range than previously known. We invite the public to comment on this additional information. DATES: The comment period on the October 4, 2016, proposed rule (81 FR 68379) is reopened. Comments should be received on or before November 30, 2017. Comments submitted electronically using the Federal eRulemaking Portal (see ADDRESSES, below) must be received by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on the closing date. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by one of the following methods: (1) Electronically: Go to the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. In the Search box, enter FWS–R6–ES–2016–0086, which is the docket number for this rulemaking. Then, in the Search panel on the left side of the screen, under the Document ethrower on DSK3G9T082PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:28 Oct 30, 2017 Jkt 244001 Type heading, click on the Proposed Rules link to locate this document. You may submit a comment by clicking on ‘‘Comment Now!’’ (2) By hard copy: Submit by U.S. mail or hand-delivery to: Public Comments Processing, Attn: FWS–R6–ES–2016– 0086, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, MS: BPHC, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041–3803. We request that you send comments only by the methods described above. We will post all comments on http:// www.regulations.gov. This generally means that we will post any personal information you provide us (see Public Comments, below, for more information). Document availability: You may view the October 4, 2016, proposed rule and supporting materials associated with this reopened public comment period and described below under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION at http:// www.regulations.gov under Docket No. FWS–R6–ES–2016–0086, or from the office listed in FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jodi Bush, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Montana Ecological Services Field Office, 585 Shepard Way, Helena, MT 59601; telephone 406–449– 5225; facsimile 406–449–5339; jodi_ bush@fws.gov. Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay Service at 800–877–8339. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Information Requested Public Comments We will accept written comments and information during this reopened comment period regarding the new information indicating additional streams and springs occupied by the western glacier stonefly (Giersch et al. 2016, entire; Giersch 2017, pers. comm.) as described in this document. We will also accept written comments and information on our proposed rule to list the western glacier stonefly and the meltwater lednian stonefly as threatened species under the Act that was published in the Federal Register on October 4, 2016 (81 FR 68379). We will consider information and recommendations from all interested parties. In addition, we continue to seek comments on the following topics as requested in our October 4, 2016, proposed rule (81 FR 68379): (1) The meltwater lednian stonefly and the western glacier stonefly biology, range, and population trends, including: PO 00000 Frm 00037 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 (a) Biological or ecological requirements of the species, including habitat requirements for feeding, breeding, and sheltering; (b) Genetics and taxonomy; (c) Historical and current range, including distribution patterns; (d) Historical and current population levels, and current and projected trends; and (e) Past and ongoing conservation measures for the species, their habitat, or both. (2) Factors that may affect the continued existence of the species, which may include habitat modification or destruction, overutilization, disease, predation, the inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms, or other natural or manmade factors. (3) Biological, commercial trade, or other relevant data concerning any threats (or lack thereof) to these species and existing regulations that may be addressing those threats. (4) Additional information concerning the historical and current status, range, distribution, and population size of these species, including the locations of any additional populations. If you submitted comments or information on the proposed rule (81 FR 68379) during the initial comment period from October 4, 2016, to December 5, 2016, please do not resubmit them. Any such comments are incorporated as part of the public record of this rulemaking proceeding, and we will fully consider them in the preparation of our final determination. Our final determination will take into consideration all written comments and any additional information we receive during all comment periods. The final decision may differ from the proposed rule, based on our review of all information received during this rulemaking proceeding. Please include sufficient information with your submission (such as scientific journal articles or other publications) to allow us to verify any scientific or commercial information you include. Please note that submissions merely stating support for or opposition to the action under consideration without providing supporting information, although noted, will not be considered in making a determination, as section 4(b)(1)(A) of the Act directs that determinations as to whether any species is an endangered or a threatened species must be made ‘‘solely on the basis of the best scientific and commercial data available.’’ You may submit your comments and materials concerning the proposed rule by one of the methods listed in ADDRESSES. We request that you send E:\FR\FM\31OCP1.SGM 31OCP1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 209 / Tuesday, October 31, 2017 / Proposed Rules comments only by the methods described in ADDRESSES. If you submit information via http:// www.regulations.gov, your entire submission—including any personal identifying information—will be posted on the Web site. If your submission is made via a hardcopy that includes personal identifying information, you may request at the top of your document that we withhold this information from public review. However, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. We will post all hardcopy submissions on http://www.regulations.gov. Comments and materials we receive, as well as supporting documentation we used in preparing the proposed rule, will be available for public inspection on http://www.regulations.gov, or by appointment, during normal business hours, at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Montana Ecological Services Field Office (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). Peer Review ethrower on DSK3G9T082PROD with PROPOSALS In accordance with our joint policy on peer review published in the Federal Register on July 1, 1994 (59 FR 34270), we sought the expert opinions of six appropriate and independent specialists regarding the proposed rule, including the new information discussed in this document, and received comments or peer reviews from four peer reviewers. The purpose of peer review is to ensure that our listing determinations are based on scientifically sound data, assumptions, and analyses. The peer reviewers have expertise in stonefly biology, habitat, and life history. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:28 Oct 30, 2017 Jkt 244001 Background Species Information and Previous Federal Actions On October 4, 2016, we published a 12-month finding for the western glacier stonefly and a proposed rule to list the western glacier stonefly and meltwater lednian stonefly as threatened species under the Act (81 FR 68379). We combined the 12-month finding and proposed rule in one document for efficiency. Please refer to that proposed rule for information about western glacier stonefly and meltwater lednian stonefly taxonomy, descriptions of the two species, distribution and abundance, habitat, and biology, as well as a detailed description of previous Federal actions concerning the western glacier stonefly and meltwater lednian stonefly prior to October 4, 2016. As discussed in our proposed rule, we became aware of information in August 2016 indicating additional streams and springs occupied by western glacier stonefly in southwestern Montana and northwestern Wyoming. Furthermore, in March 2017, we became aware of additional information on western glacier stonefly, indicating a larger range than previously known. This new information from August 2016 and March 2017 is described below. New Information We received updated information on the distribution of western glacier stonefly from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) on August 22, 2016. This information was included in a final report to the Service examining the status, distribution, and ecology of the meltwater lednian stonefly and the PO 00000 Frm 00038 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 50361 western glacier stonefly (Giersch et al. 2016, entire). In this report, USGS documented western glacier stonefly approximately 500 miles farther south than previously known (Giersch et al. 2016, p. 28). These southern streams and springs were in the AbsarokaBeartooth Wilderness in southern Montana and in Grand Teton National Park in northwestern Wyoming. On March 22, 2017, we again received updated information on the distribution of western glacier stonefly from the USGS. This information was from field surveys conducted in late 2016. These surveys identified additional occupied streams and springs of western glacier stonefly in southern Montana and northwestern Wyoming (in the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness and Grand Teton National Park; Figure 1). In addition, a study funded by the Wyoming Natural Diversity Database estimated the degree to which western glacier stonefly were genetically different amongst the three mountain ranges (Glacier National Park, AbsarokaBeartooth Wilderness, and Grand Teton National Park) (Hotaling et al. 2017, p. 11). Although the study noted that there is evidence of significant genetic differentiation amongst western glacier stonefly populations residing in the different mountain ranges, the authors do not believe the evidence supports multiple species designations (Hotaling et al. 2017, p. 12). As a result of the additional range information and genetics report, we are now aware of a total of 16 occupied streams or springs of western glacier stonefly rangewide (Montana and Wyoming). BILLING CODE 4333–15–P E:\FR\FM\31OCP1.SGM 31OCP1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 209 / Tuesday, October 31, 2017 / Proposed Rules Figure 1. Known distribution of western glacier stonefly, including newly reported streams and springs in southern Montana (Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness) and northwestern W omin Grand Teton National Park. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:28 Oct 30, 2017 Jkt 244001 PO 00000 Frm 00039 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 E:\FR\FM\31OCP1.SGM 31OCP1 EP31OC17.003</GPH> ethrower on DSK3G9T082PROD with PROPOSALS 50362 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 209 / Tuesday, October 31, 2017 / Proposed Rules BILLING CODE 4333–15–C References Cited A complete list of references cited in this document is available on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov at Docket No. FWS–R6–ES–2016–0086 and upon request from the Montana Ecological Services Field Office (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). Authors The primary authors of this document are the staff members of the Montana Ecological Services Field Office. Authority The authority for this action is the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.). Dated: September 28, 2017. James W. Kurth, Acting Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. [FR Doc. 2017–23579 Filed 10–30–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4333–15–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 253 [Docket No. 170404355–7355–01] RIN 0648–BG80 Merchant Marine Act and MagnusonStevens Act Provisions; Fishing Vessel, Fishing Facility and Individual Fishing Quota and Harvesting Rights Lending Program Regulations National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Proposed rule; request for comments. AGENCY: NMFS’ Fisheries Finance Program (FFP) provides long-term financing to the commercial fishing and aquaculture industries for fishing vessels, fisheries facilities, aquaculture facilities, and certain designated individual fishing quota (IFQ). Section 302 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2015 (Pub. L. 114–120) included new authority to finance the purchase of harvesting rights in a fishery that is federally managed under a limited access system. The FFP proposes to add a new section to the existing FFP regulations to implement this statutory change. The net effect of this proposed change to the regulations will be to provide additional authority for the ethrower on DSK3G9T082PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:28 Oct 30, 2017 Jkt 244001 program to lend, while leaving the original IFQ authority to Fishery Management Councils to use as needed. DATES: Comments must be submitted in writing on or before November 30, 2017, ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by NOAA–NMFS–2017–0064, by any one of the following methods: • Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-20170064, click the ‘‘Comment Now!’’ icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments. • Mail: Paul Marx, Chief, Financial Services Division, NMFS, Attn: F/MB5, 1315 East-West Highway, SSMC3, Silver Spring, MD 20910. Instructions: Comments sent by any other method, to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, may not be considered by NMFS. All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying information (e.g., name, address, etc.), confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter ‘‘N/A’’ in the required fields if you wish to remain anonymous). Written comments regarding the burden-hour estimates or other aspects of the collection-of-information requirements contained in this proposed rule may be submitted to paul.marx@ noaa.gov and by email to oira_ submission@omb.eop.gov or fax to (202) 395–7285. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Paul Marx, at 301–427–8771 or via email at paul.marx@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Under the authority of Chapter 537 of Title 46 of the United States Code, 46 U.S.C. 53701, et seq., the FFP may provide long-term financing to the commercial fishing and aquaculture industries for fishing vessels, fisheries facilities, aquaculture facilities, and certain designated individual fishing quota (IFQs). Section 302 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2015 (Pub. L. 114–120) amended Chapter 537, providing the FFP with the authority to finance the purchase of harvesting rights in a fishery that is federally managed under a limited access system. This amendment is codified at 46 U.S.C. 53702(b)(4)(B). This action would modify the existing Program regulations to reflect this statutory change. The net effect of this PO 00000 Frm 00040 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 50363 change will be to provide additional authority for the program to lend, while leaving the original IFQ authority to Fishery Management Councils (FMCs) to use as needed. Existing IFQ Loan Authority 46 U.S.C. 53706 authorizes the FFP to finance or refinance the purchase of individual fishing quotas in accordance with section 303(d)(4) of the MagnusonStevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA), now codified at 16 U.S.C. 1853a(g). Under this provision of the MSA, an FMC may submit, and NMFS may approve and implement, a loan program to aid in (1) the acquisition of IFQ by fishermen who fish from ‘‘small vessels,’’ and (2) the first time purchase of IFQ by ‘‘entry level fishermen.’’ Therefore, under this authority, the FFP cannot initiate or implement a lending program to finance or refinance the purchase of IFQ until the appropriate FMC submits a request to NMFS and provides guidance for the requisite criteria. NMFS currently administers two loan programs pursuant to the existing IFQ authority: The Northwest Halibut/ Sablefish and Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Crab IFQ loan programs. NMFS anticipates no effects to either of these existing loan programs as a result of this proposed action. New Loan Authority The new authority provided by Public Law 114–120 broadens the FFP’s existing authority, and authorizes the Program to finance the purchase of harvesting rights in a fishery that is federally managed under a limited access system. NMFS will interpret ‘‘limited access system’’ in accordance with section 3(27) of the MSA for purposes of this authority. The MSA defines ‘‘limited access system’’ as ‘‘a system that limits participation in a fishery to those satisfying certain eligibility criteria or requirements contained in a fishery management plan or associated regulation.’’ 16 U.S.C. 1802(27). Such definition includes, but is not limited to, IFQ fisheries. The new authority provided by Public Law 114–120 does not require FMCs to initiate a request to establish a loan program in a fishery that is federally managed under a limited access system in order for the FFP to provide financing in such a fishery. However, under the MSA, FMCs are primarily responsible for developing fishery management plans (FMPs) for fisheries within their authority that require conservation and management. It is possible that the availability of fisheries loans may have unanticipated effects on the E:\FR\FM\31OCP1.SGM 31OCP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 209 (Tuesday, October 31, 2017)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 50360-50363]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-23579]



[[Page 50360]]

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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 17

[Docket No. FWS-R6-ES-2016-0086; 4500030113]
RIN 1018-BB52


Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 12-Month Finding 
on a Petition to List the Western Glacier Stonefly as an Endangered or 
Threatened Species; Proposed Threatened Species Status for Meltwater 
Lednian Stonefly and Western Glacier Stonefly

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Proposed rule; reopening of the comment period.

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

SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the 
reopening of the comment period on our October 4, 2016, proposed rule 
to list the western glacier stonefly (Zapada glacier) and the meltwater 
lednian stonefly (Lednia tumana) as threatened species under the 
Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). We are reopening the 
comment period because we have received additional information about 
the range of the western glacier stonefly and reopening the comment 
period will provide the public an opportunity to comment on the 
additional range information. In August 2016, we received new 
information on the western glacier stonefly, indicating a larger range 
than previously known. In March 2017, we again received additional 
information (separate from the information received in August 2016) 
regarding the western glacier stonefly range, also indicating a larger 
range than previously known. We invite the public to comment on this 
additional information.

DATES: The comment period on the October 4, 2016, proposed rule (81 FR 
68379) is reopened. Comments should be received on or before November 
30, 2017. Comments submitted electronically using the Federal 
eRulemaking Portal (see ADDRESSES, below) must be received by 11:59 
p.m. Eastern Time on the closing date.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by one of the following methods:
    (1) Electronically: Go to the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. In the Search box, enter FWS-R6-ES-2016-0086, 
which is the docket number for this rulemaking. Then, in the Search 
panel on the left side of the screen, under the Document Type heading, 
click on the Proposed Rules link to locate this document. You may 
submit a comment by clicking on ``Comment Now!''
    (2) By hard copy: Submit by U.S. mail or hand-delivery to: Public 
Comments Processing, Attn: FWS-R6-ES-2016-0086, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, MS: BPHC, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803.
    We request that you send comments only by the methods described 
above. We will post all comments on http://www.regulations.gov. This 
generally means that we will post any personal information you provide 
us (see Public Comments, below, for more information).
    Document availability: You may view the October 4, 2016, proposed 
rule and supporting materials associated with this reopened public 
comment period and described below under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION at 
http://www.regulations.gov under Docket No. FWS-R6-ES-2016-0086, or 
from the office listed in FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jodi Bush, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish 
and Wildlife Service, Montana Ecological Services Field Office, 585 
Shepard Way, Helena, MT 59601; telephone 406-449-5225; facsimile 406-
449-5339; [email protected]. Persons who use a telecommunications 
device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay Service at 800-
877-8339.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Information Requested

Public Comments

    We will accept written comments and information during this 
reopened comment period regarding the new information indicating 
additional streams and springs occupied by the western glacier stonefly 
(Giersch et al. 2016, entire; Giersch 2017, pers. comm.) as described 
in this document. We will also accept written comments and information 
on our proposed rule to list the western glacier stonefly and the 
meltwater lednian stonefly as threatened species under the Act that was 
published in the Federal Register on October 4, 2016 (81 FR 68379). We 
will consider information and recommendations from all interested 
parties.
    In addition, we continue to seek comments on the following topics 
as requested in our October 4, 2016, proposed rule (81 FR 68379):
    (1) The meltwater lednian stonefly and the western glacier stonefly 
biology, range, and population trends, including:
    (a) Biological or ecological requirements of the species, including 
habitat requirements for feeding, breeding, and sheltering;
    (b) Genetics and taxonomy;
    (c) Historical and current range, including distribution patterns;
    (d) Historical and current population levels, and current and 
projected trends; and
    (e) Past and ongoing conservation measures for the species, their 
habitat, or both.
    (2) Factors that may affect the continued existence of the species, 
which may include habitat modification or destruction, overutilization, 
disease, predation, the inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms, 
or other natural or manmade factors.
    (3) Biological, commercial trade, or other relevant data concerning 
any threats (or lack thereof) to these species and existing regulations 
that may be addressing those threats.
    (4) Additional information concerning the historical and current 
status, range, distribution, and population size of these species, 
including the locations of any additional populations.
    If you submitted comments or information on the proposed rule (81 
FR 68379) during the initial comment period from October 4, 2016, to 
December 5, 2016, please do not resubmit them. Any such comments are 
incorporated as part of the public record of this rulemaking 
proceeding, and we will fully consider them in the preparation of our 
final determination. Our final determination will take into 
consideration all written comments and any additional information we 
receive during all comment periods. The final decision may differ from 
the proposed rule, based on our review of all information received 
during this rulemaking proceeding.
    Please include sufficient information with your submission (such as 
scientific journal articles or other publications) to allow us to 
verify any scientific or commercial information you include. Please 
note that submissions merely stating support for or opposition to the 
action under consideration without providing supporting information, 
although noted, will not be considered in making a determination, as 
section 4(b)(1)(A) of the Act directs that determinations as to whether 
any species is an endangered or a threatened species must be made 
``solely on the basis of the best scientific and commercial data 
available.''
    You may submit your comments and materials concerning the proposed 
rule by one of the methods listed in ADDRESSES. We request that you 
send

[[Page 50361]]

comments only by the methods described in ADDRESSES.
    If you submit information via http://www.regulations.gov, your 
entire submission--including any personal identifying information--will 
be posted on the Web site. If your submission is made via a hardcopy 
that includes personal identifying information, you may request at the 
top of your document that we withhold this information from public 
review. However, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. We 
will post all hardcopy submissions on http://www.regulations.gov.
    Comments and materials we receive, as well as supporting 
documentation we used in preparing the proposed rule, will be available 
for public inspection on http://www.regulations.gov, or by appointment, 
during normal business hours, at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 
Montana Ecological Services Field Office (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION 
CONTACT).

Peer Review

    In accordance with our joint policy on peer review published in the 
Federal Register on July 1, 1994 (59 FR 34270), we sought the expert 
opinions of six appropriate and independent specialists regarding the 
proposed rule, including the new information discussed in this 
document, and received comments or peer reviews from four peer 
reviewers. The purpose of peer review is to ensure that our listing 
determinations are based on scientifically sound data, assumptions, and 
analyses. The peer reviewers have expertise in stonefly biology, 
habitat, and life history.

Background

Species Information and Previous Federal Actions

    On October 4, 2016, we published a 12-month finding for the western 
glacier stonefly and a proposed rule to list the western glacier 
stonefly and meltwater lednian stonefly as threatened species under the 
Act (81 FR 68379). We combined the 12-month finding and proposed rule 
in one document for efficiency. Please refer to that proposed rule for 
information about western glacier stonefly and meltwater lednian 
stonefly taxonomy, descriptions of the two species, distribution and 
abundance, habitat, and biology, as well as a detailed description of 
previous Federal actions concerning the western glacier stonefly and 
meltwater lednian stonefly prior to October 4, 2016. As discussed in 
our proposed rule, we became aware of information in August 2016 
indicating additional streams and springs occupied by western glacier 
stonefly in southwestern Montana and northwestern Wyoming. Furthermore, 
in March 2017, we became aware of additional information on western 
glacier stonefly, indicating a larger range than previously known. This 
new information from August 2016 and March 2017 is described below.

New Information

    We received updated information on the distribution of western 
glacier stonefly from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) on 
August 22, 2016. This information was included in a final report to the 
Service examining the status, distribution, and ecology of the 
meltwater lednian stonefly and the western glacier stonefly (Giersch et 
al. 2016, entire). In this report, USGS documented western glacier 
stonefly approximately 500 miles farther south than previously known 
(Giersch et al. 2016, p. 28). These southern streams and springs were 
in the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness in southern Montana and in Grand 
Teton National Park in northwestern Wyoming. On March 22, 2017, we 
again received updated information on the distribution of western 
glacier stonefly from the USGS. This information was from field surveys 
conducted in late 2016. These surveys identified additional occupied 
streams and springs of western glacier stonefly in southern Montana and 
northwestern Wyoming (in the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness and Grand 
Teton National Park; Figure 1).
    In addition, a study funded by the Wyoming Natural Diversity 
Database estimated the degree to which western glacier stonefly were 
genetically different amongst the three mountain ranges (Glacier 
National Park, Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness, and Grand Teton National 
Park) (Hotaling et al. 2017, p. 11). Although the study noted that 
there is evidence of significant genetic differentiation amongst 
western glacier stonefly populations residing in the different mountain 
ranges, the authors do not believe the evidence supports multiple 
species designations (Hotaling et al. 2017, p. 12). As a result of the 
additional range information and genetics report, we are now aware of a 
total of 16 occupied streams or springs of western glacier stonefly 
rangewide (Montana and Wyoming).
BILLING CODE 4333-15-P

[[Page 50362]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP31OC17.003


[[Page 50363]]


BILLING CODE 4333-15-C

References Cited

    A complete list of references cited in this document is available 
on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov at Docket No. FWS-R6-ES-
2016-0086 and upon request from the Montana Ecological Services Field 
Office (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT).

Authors

    The primary authors of this document are the staff members of the 
Montana Ecological Services Field Office.

Authority

    The authority for this action is the Endangered Species Act of 
1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.).

    Dated: September 28, 2017.
James W. Kurth,
Acting Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-23579 Filed 10-30-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4333-15-P