Fish and Wildlife Service March 5, 2014 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents
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Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Assessment for the Barton Springs/Edwards Aquifer Conservation District for Proposed Incidental Take Permit Addressing Take of Two Federally Listed Species in Central Texas
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), advise the public that we intend to prepare a draft Environmental Assessment (EA) to evaluate the impacts of, and alternatives to, the proposed issuance of an incidental take permit to the Barton Springs/Edwards Aquifer Conservation District (District). The permit, issued under the Endangered Species Act, as amended (Act), would allow for potential take of two federally listed species associated with the ongoing management and withdrawal of groundwater from the Barton Springs segment of the Edwards Aquifer (Aquifer) in Central Texas.
Migratory Bird Permits; Extension of Expiration Dates for Double-Crested Cormorant Depredation Orders
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, propose revisions to the two existing depredation orders for double-crested cormorants (Phalacrocorax auritus) at 50 CFR 21.47 and 21.48. We propose to extend the expiration dates from these depredation orders for 5 years. We do so to allow State and tribal resource management agencies to continue to manage double-crested cormorant problems under the terms and conditions of the depredation orders and gather data on the effects of double-crested cormorant control actions. If we do not extend these depredation orders, any action to control depredating double-crested cormorants after June 30, 2014, will require a permit. We have prepared a draft environmental assessment (DEA) to analyze the environmental impacts associated with this extension. Additionally, we propose to change the annual reporting date for the depredation order to protect public resources (50 CFR 21.48), to remove requirements for cormorant control activities around bald eagles and bald eagle nests for both depredation orders, and to recommend use of the National Bald Eagle Management Guidelines for both depredation orders. We invite the public to comment on the DEA and our proposed revisions to the regulations.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Designation of Critical Habitat for Jaguar
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), designate critical habitat for the jaguar (Panthera onca) under the Endangered Species Act, as amended. In total, approximately 309,263 hectares (764,207 acres) in Pima, Santa Cruz, and Cochise Counties, Arizona, and Hidalgo County, New Mexico, fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. This designation fulfills our obligations under a settlement agreement. The effect of this regulation is to designate critical habitat for jaguar under the Endangered Species Act.