Marine Mammals; File No. 22629, 56219 [2020-20061]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 177 / Friday, September 11, 2020 / Notices Appendix II—List of Topics Discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum I. Summary II. Background III. Scope Comments IV. Scope of the Investigation V. Use of Facts Available and Adverse Inferences VI. Analysis of Programs VII. Calculation of the All-Others Rate VIII. Recommendation [FR Doc. 2020–20073 Filed 9–10–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XA471] Marine Mammals; File No. 22629 National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; issuance of permit. AGENCY: Notice is hereby given that a permit has been issued to Mystic Aquarium (Responsible Party: Stephen M. Coan, Ph.D.) to import five beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) for scientific research. ADDRESSES: The permit and related documents are available online at https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/action/ permit-application-import-5-belugawhales-scientific-research-file-no-22629mystic-aquarium. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Amy Sloan (amy.sloan@noaa.gov), Courtney Smith (courtney.smith@ noaa.gov), or Jennifer Skidmore (jennifer.skidmore@noaa.gov), (301) 427–8401. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On October 1, 2019, notice was published in the Federal Register (84 FR 52072) that a request for a permit to import five beluga whales for scientific research had been submitted by the above-named applicant. A public hearing on this action was held on November 18, 2019 (84 FR 58694). The requested permit has been issued under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) and the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216). The permit authorizes the importation of five captive-born beluga whales from Marineland of Canada (Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada) to Mystic Aquarium (Mystic, Connecticut, United States). SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:54 Sep 10, 2020 Jkt 250001 The beluga whales were born at Marineland of Canada and NMFS considers one of the beluga whales to be a member of the depleted Sakhalin BayNikolaya Bay-Amur River stock, because both parents are likely from the depleted stock. Four of the whales have mixed-stock parentage (i.e., one parent likely from the depleted stock and the other from a stock that has not been designated as depleted). For purposes of this permit application, NMFS has treated all five whales as depleted. The purpose of the research is to contribute knowledge and inform management and recovery of beluga whale populations in the wild including the endangered Cook Inlet beluga whale distinct population segment and the depleted Sakhalin Bay-Nikolaya BayAmur River beluga whale stock. Research authorized includes the following Studies: (1) Neuroimmunological response to environmental and anthropogenic stressors; (2) Development of novel noninvasive techniques to assess health in free-ranging, stranded and endangered beluga whales; (3) Hearing and physiological response to anthropogenic sound; (4) Photogrammetry body condition studies; (5) Diving physiology; (6) Microbiome; and (8) Testing of prototype telemetry and imaging devices before deployment on wild beluga whales. The permit does not authorize Study 7 (Behavioral and reproduction studies) including breeding of any of the imported beluga whales but includes reproductive monitoring as part of husbandry activities. Mystic Aquarium must submit a plan to provide safe and effective contraception or other means to prevent breeding of the five subject beluga whales, for approval by the Office Director prior to importation. Consistent with other research permits authorizing captive maintenance, the permit is conditioned to require approval by the Office Director for any transfer or transport of the imported whales, including any transport to the Georgia Aquarium, and disposition of the whales at the termination of research. Consistent with NMFS’ regulations, public display is authorized incidental to the research. This incidental public display must not interfere with the research and must occur as part of an educational program describing the status of the species and its endangered and depleted stocks. The animals may not be used in public interactive programs or be trained for performance. Public demonstrations in which the whales perform trained husbandry, medical, research-related, and natural behaviors are authorized. PO 00000 Frm 00008 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 56219 The permit is valid through August 31, 2025. An Environmental Assessment (EA) was prepared analyzing the effects of the permitted activities on the human environment in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.). Based on the analyses in the EA, NMFS determined that issuance of the permit would not significantly impact the quality of the human environment and that preparation of an environmental impact statement was not required. That determination is documented in a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI), signed on August 27, 2020. Dated: September 8, 2020. Julia Marie Harrison, Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2020–20061 Filed 9–10–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Evaluation of National Estuarine Research Reserve; Public Meeting; Request for Comments Office for Coastal Management (OCM), National Ocean Service (NOS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Department of Commerce (DOC). ACTION: Notice of public meeting and opportunity to comment. AGENCY: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Office for Coastal Management will hold a public meeting to solicit comments on the performance evaluation of the Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve. SUMMARY: NOAA will consider all written comments received by October 23, 2020. A virtual public meeting will be held on Wednesday, October 14, 2020 at 12 p.m. EDT. ADDRESSES: You may submit written comments on the national estuarine research reserve NOAA intends to evaluate by emailing Carrie Hall, Evaluator, NOAA Office for Coastal management at Carrie.Hall@noaa.gov. Timely comments received by the Office for Coastal Management are considered part of the public record and may be publicly accessible. Any personal information (e.g., name, address) submitted voluntarily by the sender may DATES: E:\FR\FM\11SEN1.SGM 11SEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 177 (Friday, September 11, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Page 56219]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-20061]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

[RTID 0648-XA471]


Marine Mammals; File No. 22629

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

ACTION: Notice; issuance of permit.

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SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that a permit has been issued to Mystic 
Aquarium (Responsible Party: Stephen M. Coan, Ph.D.) to import five 
beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) for scientific research.

ADDRESSES: The permit and related documents are available online at 
https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/action/permit-application-import-5-beluga-whales-scientific-research-file-no-22629-mystic-aquarium.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Amy Sloan ([email protected]), 
Courtney Smith ([email protected]), or Jennifer Skidmore 
([email protected]), (301) 427-8401.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On October 1, 2019, notice was published in 
the Federal Register (84 FR 52072) that a request for a permit to 
import five beluga whales for scientific research had been submitted by 
the above-named applicant. A public hearing on this action was held on 
November 18, 2019 (84 FR 58694). The requested permit has been issued 
under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as 
amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) and the regulations governing the 
taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216).
    The permit authorizes the importation of five captive-born beluga 
whales from Marineland of Canada (Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada) to 
Mystic Aquarium (Mystic, Connecticut, United States).
    The beluga whales were born at Marineland of Canada and NMFS 
considers one of the beluga whales to be a member of the depleted 
Sakhalin Bay-Nikolaya Bay-Amur River stock, because both parents are 
likely from the depleted stock. Four of the whales have mixed-stock 
parentage (i.e., one parent likely from the depleted stock and the 
other from a stock that has not been designated as depleted). For 
purposes of this permit application, NMFS has treated all five whales 
as depleted.
    The purpose of the research is to contribute knowledge and inform 
management and recovery of beluga whale populations in the wild 
including the endangered Cook Inlet beluga whale distinct population 
segment and the depleted Sakhalin Bay-Nikolaya Bay-Amur River beluga 
whale stock. Research authorized includes the following Studies: (1) 
Neuroimmunological response to environmental and anthropogenic 
stressors; (2) Development of novel non-invasive techniques to assess 
health in free-ranging, stranded and endangered beluga whales; (3) 
Hearing and physiological response to anthropogenic sound; (4) 
Photogrammetry body condition studies; (5) Diving physiology; (6) 
Microbiome; and (8) Testing of prototype telemetry and imaging devices 
before deployment on wild beluga whales. The permit does not authorize 
Study 7 (Behavioral and reproduction studies) including breeding of any 
of the imported beluga whales but includes reproductive monitoring as 
part of husbandry activities. Mystic Aquarium must submit a plan to 
provide safe and effective contraception or other means to prevent 
breeding of the five subject beluga whales, for approval by the Office 
Director prior to importation.
    Consistent with other research permits authorizing captive 
maintenance, the permit is conditioned to require approval by the 
Office Director for any transfer or transport of the imported whales, 
including any transport to the Georgia Aquarium, and disposition of the 
whales at the termination of research. Consistent with NMFS' 
regulations, public display is authorized incidental to the research. 
This incidental public display must not interfere with the research and 
must occur as part of an educational program describing the status of 
the species and its endangered and depleted stocks. The animals may not 
be used in public interactive programs or be trained for performance. 
Public demonstrations in which the whales perform trained husbandry, 
medical, research-related, and natural behaviors are authorized. The 
permit is valid through August 31, 2025.
    An Environmental Assessment (EA) was prepared analyzing the effects 
of the permitted activities on the human environment in compliance with 
the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.).
    Based on the analyses in the EA, NMFS determined that issuance of 
the permit would not significantly impact the quality of the human 
environment and that preparation of an environmental impact statement 
was not required. That determination is documented in a Finding of No 
Significant Impact (FONSI), signed on August 27, 2020.

    Dated: September 8, 2020.
Julia Marie Harrison,
Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected 
Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2020-20061 Filed 9-10-20; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P