Endangered Species; Receipt of Applications for Permit
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, invite the public to comment on the following applications to conduct certain activities with endangered species. With some exceptions, the Endangered Species Act (ESA) prohibits activities with listed species unless a Federal permit is issued that allows such activities. The ESA law requires that we invite public comment before issuing these permits.
Incidental Take Permit; Auwahi Wind Energy Generation Facility, Maui, HI; Draft Habitat Conservation Plan and Draft Environmental Assessment
Auwahi Wind Energy LLC (applicant), a subsidiary of Sempra Generation, has submitted an application to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) for an incidental take permit under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA). The applicant is requesting an incidental take permit pursuant to the ESA to authorize take of two endangered Hawaiian bird species, one bat species, and one moth species. The permit application includes a draft Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) describing the applicant's actions and the measures the applicant will implement to minimize, mitigate, and monitor incidental take of the Covered Species, and a draft Implementing Agreement (IA). The Service also announces the availability of a draft Environmental Assessment (EA) that has been prepared in response to the permit application in accordance with requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). We are making the permit application package and draft EA available for public review and comment.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Revised Critical Habitat for the Marbled Murrelet
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), are revising designated critical habitat for marbled murrelet (Brachyramphus marmoratus marmoratus) pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). On May 24, 1996, we designated 3,887,800 ac (ac) (1,573,340 hectares (ha)) as critical habitat for the marbled murrelet in Washington, Oregon, and California. We are revising the designated critical habitat for the marbled murrelet by removing approximately 189,671 ac (76,757 ha) in northern California and southern Oregon from the 1996 designation, based on new information indicating that these areas do not meet the definition of critical habitat. The areas being removed from the 1996 designation in northern California are within Inland Zone 2, where we have no historical or current survey records documenting marbled murrelet presence. Intensive surveys in southern Oregon indicate the inland distribution of the marbled murrelet is strongly associated with the hemlock/tanoak habitat zone, rather than distance from the coast. Accordingly, the areas being removed in southern Oregon are limited to those areas not associated with the hemlock/tanoak zone. The areas being removed are not considered essential for the conservation of the species. Approximately 3,698,100 ac (1,497,000 ha) of critical habitat is now designated for the marbled murrelet. In this rule, we are also finalizing the taxonomic revision of the scientific name of the marbled murrelet from Brachyramphus marmoratus marmoratus to Brachyramphus marmoratus.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 12-Month Finding on a Petition To List the Cactus Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl as Threatened or Endangered With Critical Habitat
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce a 12-month finding on a petition to list the cactus ferruginous pygmy-owl (Glaucidium brasilianum cactorum) as threatened or endangered and to designate critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). Additionally, the petition requested that we recognize and list a western subspecies of the cactus ferruginous pygmy-owl (Glaucidium ridgwayi cactorum), or, alternatively, two potential distinct population segment (DPS) configurations. After review of all available scientific and commercial information, we find that Glaucidium ridgwayi cactorum is not a valid taxon, and, therefore, not a listable entity under the Act. Additionally, using the currently accepted taxonomic classification of the pygmy-owl (Glaucidium brasilianum cactorum), we find that listing the pygmy-owl is not warranted at this time throughout all or a significant portion of its range, including the petitioned and other potential DPS configurations. However, we ask the public to submit to us at any time any new information concerning the taxonomy or status of the pygmy-owl, as well as any new information on the threats to the pygmy-owl or its habitat.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 90-Day Finding on a Petition To List 29 Mollusk Species as Threatened or Endangered With Critical Habitat
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announce a 90-day finding on a petition to list 29 mollusk species and subspecies as threatened or endangered, under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). Based on our review, we find that the petition presents substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that listing 26 of the 29 species and subspecies may be warranted. Therefore, with the publication of this notice, we are initiating a review of the status of the 26 species and subspecies to determine if listing any of them is warranted. To ensure that the status review is comprehensive, we are requesting scientific and commercial data and other information regarding these 26 species and subspecies. Based on the status review, we will issue a 12-month finding on the petition, which will address whether the petitioned action is warranted, as provided in the Act.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 12-Month Finding on a Petition To List the Northern Leopard Frog in the Western United States as Threatened
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, announce a 12-month finding on a petition to list the northern leopard frog (Lithobates (=Rana) pipiens) under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). After review of the best scientific and commercial information, we find that listing the northern leopard frog is not warranted at this time. However, we ask the public to submit to us any new information that becomes available concerning threats to the northern leopard frog or its habitat at any time.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Removal of the Gray Wolf in Wyoming From the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Removal of the Wyoming Wolf Population's Status as an Experimental Population
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service or USFWS), are proposing to remove the gray wolf (Canis lupus) in Wyoming from the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. This rule focuses on the Wyoming portion of the Northern Rocky Mountain (NRM) Distinct Population Segment (DPS), except where discussion of the larger Greater Yellowstone Area (GYA) or NRM metapopulation (a population that exists as partially isolated sets of subpopulations) is necessary to understand impacts to wolves in Wyoming. The best scientific and commercial data available indicate that wolves in Wyoming are recovered and no longer meet the definition of endangered or threatened under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). Wyoming's wolf population is stable, threats are addressed, and a post-delisting monitoring and management framework has been developed. However, additional changes to Wyoming State law and Wyoming Game and Fish Commission regulations are necessary for implementation. We expect the State of Wyoming to adopt the necessary statutory and regulatory changes within the next several months. If this proposal is finalized, the gray wolf would be delisted in Wyoming, the nonessential experimental population designation would be removed, and future management for this species, except in National Parks and National Wildlife Refuges, would be conducted by the appropriate State or Tribal wildlife agencies. We seek information, data, and comments from the public about this proposal including the post-delisting monitoring and management framework.