Fish and Wildlife Service April 14, 2006 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Farallon National Wildlife Refuge Restoration Project
Document Number: E6-4820
Type: Notice
Date: 2006-04-14
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
In accordance with procedures for implementing the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321-4370d), this notice advises the public that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) intends to gather information necessary to prepare a Federal environmental document (environmental assessment or environmental impact statement) for the proposed Farallon National Wildlife Refuge Restoration Project. This document will examine alternatives for eradicating non-native house mice on the South Farallon Islands (SFI) as a means of restoring populations of, and protecting native seabirds, insects and coastal plants, some of which are rare and declining due to the presence of non-native species. In addition, the Service proposes to implement preventative actions to keep non-native mammals from re- establishing on the SFI, and respond to any future re-introductions. The project would take place on Southeast Farallon Island (SEFI) and West End (WE) which together comprise the South Farallon Islands, and are located in San Francisco County, California. The South Farallon Islands are included in the Farallon National Wildlife Refuge which is managed by the Service. The Service is furnishing this notice in order to: (1) Advise other federal, state, and local agencies, and the public of our intentions; (2) announce the initiation of a 45-day public scoping period; and (3) obtain suggestions and information on the scope of issues to be included in the environmental document.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Final Rule To Remove the Arizona Distinct Population Segment of the Cactus Ferruginous Pygmy-owl (Glaucidium brasilianum cactorum) From the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife; Withdrawal of the Proposed Rule To Designate Critical Habitat; Removal of Federally Designated Critical Habitat
Document Number: 06-3470
Type: Rule
Date: 2006-04-14
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), under the authority of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (Act), as amended, have determined that it is appropriate to remove the Arizona distinct population segment (DPS) of the cactus ferruginous pygmy-owl (Glaucidium brasilianum cactorum) (pygmy-owl) from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and, accordingly, also remove designated critical habitat for this DPS found in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) at 50 CFR 17.95. Additionally, we are withdrawing the proposed rule to designate new critical habitat for the Arizona DPS of the pygmy-owl (67 FR 7103, November 27, 2002). The Arizona DPS of the pygmy-owl was listed as endangered on March 10, 1997 (62 FR 10730), and critical habitat was designated on July 12, 1999 (64 FR 37419). On January 9, 2001, a coalition of plaintiffs filed a lawsuit with the District Court of Arizona challenging the validity of our listing of the pygmy-owl as a DPS and the designation of its critical habitat. After the District Court remanded the designation of critical habitat (National Association of Home Builders et al. v. Norton, Civ.-00-0903- PHX-SRB), we proposed a new critical habitat designation on November 27, 2002 (67 FR 7103). Ultimately, as a result of this lawsuit, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued an opinion on August 19, 2003, stating that ``the FWS acted arbitrarily and capriciously in designating the Arizona pygmy-owl population as a DPS under the DPS Policy'' (National Association of Homebuilders v. Norton, 340 F.3d 835, 852 (9th Cir. 2003)). In light of the Ninth Circuit's opinion, we have reassessed the application of the DPS significance criteria to the Arizona population of the pygmy-owl. Based on a review of the available information and science, the public comments received during the public comment period, and our DPS policy, we do not believe that the Arizona DPS of the pygmy-owl qualifies as an entity that can be listed under the Act.
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