Fish and Wildlife Service April 27, 2016 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Determination That Designation of Critical Habitat Is Not Prudent for the Northern Long-Eared Bat
Document Number: 2016-09673
Type: Rule
Date: 2016-04-27
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), have reconsidered whether designating critical habitat for the northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis) is prudent. We have determined that such a designation is not prudent. We listed the northern long- eared bat as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act), on April 2, 2015. At the time the species was listed, we determined that designation of critical habitat was prudent, but not determinable. Since that time, information has come available that demonstrates that designating the wintering habitat as critical habitat for the bat would likely increase the threat from vandalism and disturbance, and could, potentially, increase the spread of white-nose syndrome. In addition, designating the summer habitat as critical habitat would not be beneficial to the species, because there are no areas within the summer habitat that meet the definition of critical habitat. Thus, we have determined that the designation of critical habitat is not prudent for the northern long-eared bat.