Marine Mammals; File Nos. 22289, 22293, and 22298, 15597-15598 [2019-07529]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 73 / Tuesday, April 16, 2019 / Notices National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XG913 Marine Mammals; File Nos. 22289, 22293, and 22298 National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; receipt of application. AGENCY: Notice is hereby given that Alaska Fisheries Science Center’s Marine Mammal Laboratory (MML) 7600 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle, WA 98115–0070 (Responsible Party: John Bengston), Alaska Sea Life Center (ASLC) P.O. Box 1329, 301 Railway Avenue, Seward, AK 99664 (Responsible Party: Tara Reimer), and Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) P.O. Box 25526, Juneau, AK 99802–5526 (Responsible Party: Michael Rehberg), have applied in due form for permits to conduct research on Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus). DATES: Written, telefaxed, or email comments must be received on or before May 16, 2019. ADDRESSES: The applications 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 Nos. 22289 (MML), 22293 (ASLC), or 22298 (ADF&G) 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: Sara Young or Shasta McClenahan, (301) 427–8401. khammond on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:32 Apr 15, 2019 Jkt 247001 The subject permits are 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.), the regulations governing the taking, importing, and exporting of endangered and threatened species (50 CFR parts 222–226), and the Fur Seal Act of 1966, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1151 et seq.). For File No. 22289: MML proposes to conduct research to measure population status, vital rates, foraging ecology, habitat requirements, and effects of natural and anthropogenic factors impacting Steller sea lion populations pursuant to fulfilling the NMFS legal requirements under the MMPA and ESA, and to test hypotheses of mechanisms underlying population trends. Studies will occur in Alaska, Washington, Oregon and California. Proposed take activities include surveys (aerial, vessel, and land) including unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), capture and handling, marking, hot branding, sampling (including but not limited to blood, blubber, swabs of all mucus membranes and lesions, skin samples, vibrissae, feces, urine, hair, and nail), tagging, and incidental disturbance. Up to 36,200 animals may be disturbed by surveys, and up to 629 animals captured, sampled and released for vital rates, foraging ecology and/or health studies per year. MML requests two unintentional mortalities annually from each the eastern and western distinct population segments (eDPS and wDPS). Non-target species that may be disturbed incidentally to these studies include northern fur seals (Callorhinus ursinus), California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris), and harbor seals (Phoca vitulina). Collected tissue samples may be exported for analysis. The requested duration of this permit is five years. For File No. 22293: ASLC proposes to conduct research to monitor population vital rates of the wDPS of Steller sea lions and determine what factors most affect vital rates and the potential for population recovery, focusing on population dynamics, health, diet, and behavior. Individuals may be taken in the Gulf of Alaska and Aleutian Islands by the following means with maximum number of takes per year in parentheses: disturbance associated with capture, observational studies, and material/scat/ carcass collection (14,000); capture, restraint, and sampling (125); and SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE PO 00000 Frm 00018 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 15597 remote biopsy (150). Captured sea lions will undergo morphometric measurements, blood and tissue collection, digital imaging, hotbranding, body condition measurement, whisker, hair, and milk sampling, temporary marking, and ultrasound exams. ASLC requests three unintentional mortalities annually from the wDPS. Non-target species that may be disturbed incidentally to these studies include harbor seals and California sea lions. The requested duration of this permit is five years. For File No. 22298: ADF&G proposes to continue their long-term Steller sea lion research program, to investigate causes for recovery trends observed in the wDPS, collecting survival and reproduction data in both DPSs, investigating movement between and within DPSs, and monitoring the eDPS for various threats subsequent to delisting. Proposed methods include: incidental disturbance during aerial (including UAS), vessel and groundbased count and brand resight surveys (up to 190,640 disturbance takes) ; captures (up to 1,690 individuals) supporting marking, external instrument attachment, and physiology, toxicology, feeding ecology and health sampling; and permanent marking (hot branding) of pups and older age classes for describing vital rates and DPS movement. ADF&G requests three unintentional mortalities annually from each the wDPS and eDPS. Non-target species that may be disturbed incidentally to these studies include northern fur seals, California sea lions, and harbor, spotted (Phoca largha), ribbon (Histriophoca fasciata), ringed (Pusa hispida), and bearded (Erignathus barbatus) seals. The requested duration of this permit is five years. 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 activities proposed are consistent with the Preferred Alternative in the Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for Steller Sea Lion and Northern Fur Seal Research (NMFS 2007) and a supplemental environmental assessment (EA; NMFS 2014) prepared for the addition of unmanned aerial surveys to the suite of Steller sea lion research activities analyzed under the EIS that concluded that issuance of the permits would not have a significant adverse impact on the human environment. An environmental review memo is being prepared to summarize these findings. Concurrent with the publication of this notice in the Federal Register, NMFS is forwarding copies of the E:\FR\FM\16APN1.SGM 16APN1 15598 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 73 / Tuesday, April 16, 2019 / Notices application to the Marine Mammal Commission and its Committee of Scientific Advisors. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dated: April 11, 2019. Amy Sloan, Acting Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Shasta McClenahan or Carrie Hubard; phone: (301) 427–8401. [FR Doc. 2019–07529 Filed 4–15–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XG854 Marine Mammals; File No. 22750 National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; receipt of application. AGENCY: Notice is hereby given that Rachel Cartwright, Ph.D., Keiki Kohola Project, 1330 Sabal Lakes Road, Delray Beach, FL 33445, 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 May 16, 2019. 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. 22750 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. khammond on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:32 Apr 15, 2019 Jkt 247001 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 parts 222–226). The applicant requests a five-year research permit to (1) monitor and describe relative abundance and patterns of habitat use for mother-calf humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) pairs, (2) establish baseline health indicators for maternal humpback whales, (3) provide estimates of humpback calf survival rates, and (4) collect opportunistic data on marine mammals associated with or in overlapping areas with humpback whales. Up to 12 species of marine mammals may be taken during research including the following ESA-listed species: blue (Balaenoptera musculus), Hawaiian insular false killer (Pseudorca crassidens), and humpback whales. Research may occur year-round in the U.S. waters of Hawaii, California, and Alaska. Research may include vessel surveys and unmanned aircraft systems for counts, observations, photogrammetry, above water and underwater photography and video recording, and exhaled air sampling. See the application for complete numbers of animals requested by species and procedure. 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: April 11, 2019. Amy Sloan, Acting Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2019–07536 Filed 4–15–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P PO 00000 Frm 00019 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XG831 Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Lighthouse Repair and Tour Operations at Northwest Seal Rock, California National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; issuance of an incidental harassment authorization renewal. AGENCY: In accordance with the regulations implementing the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), as amended, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) Renewal to the St. George Reef Lighthouse Preservation Society (Society) to harass marine mammals incidental to aircraft operations, lighthouse renovations, and tour operations associated with preservation of the St. George Reef Lighthouse Station (Station) on Northwest Seal Rock (NWSR) in the northeast Pacific Ocean. SUMMARY: This IHA Renewal is valid from April 10, 2019 through April 9, 2020. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Amy Fowler, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, (301) 427–8401. Electronic copies of the original application, renewal request, and supporting documents (including NMFS Federal Register notices of the original proposed and final authorizations, and the previous IHA), as well as a list of the references cited in this document, may be obtained online at: https:// www.fisheries.noaa.gov/national/ marine-mammal-protection/incidentaltake-authorizations-research-and-otheractivities. In case of problems accessing these documents, please call the contact listed above. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: DATES: Background The Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA, 16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) prohibits the ‘‘take’’ of marine mammals, with certain exceptions. Sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA direct the Secretary of Commerce (as delegated to NMFS) to allow, upon request, the incidental, but not intentional, taking of small numbers of marine mammals by U.S. citizens who engage in a specified activity (other E:\FR\FM\16APN1.SGM 16APN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 73 (Tuesday, April 16, 2019)]
[Notices]
[Pages 15597-15598]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-07529]



[[Page 15597]]

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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XG913


Marine Mammals; File Nos. 22289, 22293, and 22298

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

ACTION: Notice; receipt of application.

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

SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that Alaska Fisheries Science Center's 
Marine Mammal Laboratory (MML) 7600 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle, WA 
98115-0070 (Responsible Party: John Bengston), Alaska Sea Life Center 
(ASLC) P.O. Box 1329, 301 Railway Avenue, Seward, AK 99664 (Responsible 
Party: Tara Reimer), and Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) 
P.O. Box 25526, Juneau, AK 99802-5526 (Responsible Party: Michael 
Rehberg), have applied in due form for permits to conduct research on 
Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus).

DATES: Written, telefaxed, or email comments must be received on or 
before May 16, 2019.

ADDRESSES: The applications 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 
Nos. 22289 (MML), 22293 (ASLC), or 22298 (ADF&G) 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 [email protected]. 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: Sara Young or Shasta McClenahan, (301) 
427-8401.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The subject permits are 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.), the 
regulations governing the taking, importing, and exporting of 
endangered and threatened species (50 CFR parts 222-226), and the Fur 
Seal Act of 1966, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1151 et seq.).
    For File No. 22289: MML proposes to conduct research to measure 
population status, vital rates, foraging ecology, habitat requirements, 
and effects of natural and anthropogenic factors impacting Steller sea 
lion populations pursuant to fulfilling the NMFS legal requirements 
under the MMPA and ESA, and to test hypotheses of mechanisms underlying 
population trends. Studies will occur in Alaska, Washington, Oregon and 
California. Proposed take activities include surveys (aerial, vessel, 
and land) including unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), capture and 
handling, marking, hot branding, sampling (including but not limited to 
blood, blubber, swabs of all mucus membranes and lesions, skin samples, 
vibrissae, feces, urine, hair, and nail), tagging, and incidental 
disturbance. Up to 36,200 animals may be disturbed by surveys, and up 
to 629 animals captured, sampled and released for vital rates, foraging 
ecology and/or health studies per year. MML requests two unintentional 
mortalities annually from each the eastern and western distinct 
population segments (eDPS and wDPS). Non-target species that may be 
disturbed incidentally to these studies include northern fur seals 
(Callorhinus ursinus), California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), 
northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris), and harbor seals 
(Phoca vitulina). Collected tissue samples may be exported for 
analysis. The requested duration of this permit is five years.
    For File No. 22293: ASLC proposes to conduct research to monitor 
population vital rates of the wDPS of Steller sea lions and determine 
what factors most affect vital rates and the potential for population 
recovery, focusing on population dynamics, health, diet, and behavior. 
Individuals may be taken in the Gulf of Alaska and Aleutian Islands by 
the following means with maximum number of takes per year in 
parentheses: disturbance associated with capture, observational 
studies, and material/scat/carcass collection (14,000); capture, 
restraint, and sampling (125); and remote biopsy (150). Captured sea 
lions will undergo morphometric measurements, blood and tissue 
collection, digital imaging, hot-branding, body condition measurement, 
whisker, hair, and milk sampling, temporary marking, and ultrasound 
exams. ASLC requests three unintentional mortalities annually from the 
wDPS. Non-target species that may be disturbed incidentally to these 
studies include harbor seals and California sea lions. The requested 
duration of this permit is five years.
    For File No. 22298: ADF&G proposes to continue their long-term 
Steller sea lion research program, to investigate causes for recovery 
trends observed in the wDPS, collecting survival and reproduction data 
in both DPSs, investigating movement between and within DPSs, and 
monitoring the eDPS for various threats subsequent to delisting. 
Proposed methods include: incidental disturbance during aerial 
(including UAS), vessel and ground-based count and brand resight 
surveys (up to 190,640 disturbance takes) ; captures (up to 1,690 
individuals) supporting marking, external instrument attachment, and 
physiology, toxicology, feeding ecology and health sampling; and 
permanent marking (hot branding) of pups and older age classes for 
describing vital rates and DPS movement. ADF&G requests three 
unintentional mortalities annually from each the wDPS and eDPS. Non-
target species that may be disturbed incidentally to these studies 
include northern fur seals, California sea lions, and harbor, spotted 
(Phoca largha), ribbon (Histriophoca fasciata), ringed (Pusa hispida), 
and bearded (Erignathus barbatus) seals. The requested duration of this 
permit is five years.
    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 activities proposed are consistent with the Preferred Alternative 
in the Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for Steller 
Sea Lion and Northern Fur Seal Research (NMFS 2007) and a supplemental 
environmental assessment (EA; NMFS 2014) prepared for the addition of 
unmanned aerial surveys to the suite of Steller sea lion research 
activities analyzed under the EIS that concluded that issuance of the 
permits would not have a significant adverse impact on the human 
environment. An environmental review memo is being prepared to 
summarize these findings.
    Concurrent with the publication of this notice in the Federal 
Register, NMFS is forwarding copies of the

[[Page 15598]]

application to the Marine Mammal Commission and its Committee of 
Scientific Advisors.

    Dated: April 11, 2019.
Amy Sloan,
Acting Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected 
Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2019-07529 Filed 4-15-19; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P