Fish and Wildlife Service 2020 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Initiation of 5-Year Status Review for the Northern Long-Eared Bat
Document Number: 2020-28415
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-23
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, are initiating a 5- year status review under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended, for the northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis). A 5- year status review is based on the best scientific and commercial data available at the time of the review; therefore, we are requesting submission of any such information that has become available since the last review for the species to determine whether the listed species should be delisted or reclassified.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Alaska Guide Service Evaluation
Document Number: 2020-28260
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), are proposing to renew an information collection.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Land-Based Wind Energy Guidelines
Document Number: 2020-28259
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), are proposing to renew an information collection.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Receipt of an Incidental Take Permit Application for the California Condor; Availability of Draft Conservation Plan and Draft Environmental Assessment; Manzana Wind Power Project, Kern County, California
Document Number: 2020-28253
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), have received an application from Manzana Wind LLC for an incidental take permit under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended. The permit would authorize take of the federally endangered California condor (Gymnogyps californianus) incidental to otherwise lawful activities associated with operation of the existing Manzana Wind Power Project. We invite comments on the draft conservation plan and the draft environmental assessment, which we have prepared pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act. We will take comments into consideration before deciding whether to issue an incidental take permit.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Receipt of Recovery Permit Applications
Document Number: 2020-28180
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, have received applications for permits to conduct activities intended to enhance the propagation or survival of endangered or threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. We invite the public and local, State, Tribal, and Federal agencies to comment on these applications. Before issuing any of the requested permits, we will take into consideration any information that we receive during the public comment period.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Draft Recovery Plan for the Ozark Hellbender
Document Number: 2020-28172
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, announce the availability of the draft recovery plan for the Ozark hellbender, a salamander species. We request review and comment on this draft recovery plan from local, State, and Federal agencies, and the public.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Regulations for Designating Critical Habitat
Document Number: 2020-28033
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-18
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS or Service), amend portions of our regulations that implement section 4 of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). The revisions set forth a process for excluding areas of critical habitat under section 4(b)(2) of the Act, which mandates our consideration of the impacts of designating critical habitat and permits exclusions of particular areas following a discretionary exclusion analysis. These regulations outline when and how the Service will undertake an exclusion analysis, including identifying a non-exhaustive list of categories of potential impacts that we will consider. This rule, reflects agency experience, codifies some current agency practices, makes some modifications to current agency practice, and responds to applicable Supreme Court case law. The intended effect of this rule is to provide greater transparency and certainty for the public and stakeholders.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; North American Woodcock Singing Ground Survey
Document Number: 2020-27889
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-18
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), are proposing to renew an information collection.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Establishment of Annual Migratory Bird Hunting Seasons
Document Number: 2020-27887
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-18
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), are proposing to renew an information collection.
Notice of Receipt of Right-of-Way Application for Natural Gas Pipeline Crossing San Bernard National Wildlife Refuge
Document Number: 2020-27752
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-17
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has received two applications for 30-year right-of-way permits from Baymark Pipeline LLC and South Texas NGL Pipeline LLC, respectively. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will open the National Wildlife Refuge System lands, allowing for this infrastructure, under the authority of the National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service requests public comment on the permit applications and associated documents.
Receipt of Incidental Take Permit Application and Draft Low-Effect Habitat Conservation Plan, and Draft NEPA Compliance Documentation, for the Gamebird Substation Expansion in Pahrump, Nye County, Nevada
Document Number: 2020-27705
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-17
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, announce the receipt and availability of an application for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and an associated draft low- effect habitat conservation plan (HCP). Additionally, consistent with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), we have prepared a draft low-effect screening form and environmental action statement supporting our preliminary determination that the proposed permit action qualifies for a categorical exclusion under NEPA. GridLiance West, LLC has applied for an ITP under the ESA for the Gamebird Substation Expansion in Pahrump, Nye County, Nevada. The ITP would authorize the take of one species incidental to the development and construction of the project. We invite the public and local, State, Tribal, and Federal agencies to comment on the permit application, proposed low-effect HCP, and NEPA categorical exclusion determination documentation. Before issuing the requested ITP, we will take into consideration any information that we receive during the public comment period.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 12-Month Finding for the Monarch Butterfly
Document Number: 2020-27523
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-17
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce a 12-month finding on a petition to list the monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus plexippus) as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended. After a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, we find that listing the monarch butterfly as an endangered or threatened species is warranted but precluded by higher priority actions to amend the Lists of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants. We will develop a proposed rule to list the monarch butterfly as our priorities allow. However, we ask the public to submit to us any new information relevant to the status of the species or its habitat at any time.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Regulations for Listing Endangered and Threatened Species and Designating Critical Habitat
Document Number: 2020-27693
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-16
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) (collectively referred to as the ``Services'' or ``we''), add a definition of ``habitat'' to our regulations that implement section 4 of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). This rulemaking responds to Supreme Court case law regarding the designation of critical habitat and provides transparency, clarity, and consistency for stakeholders.
Draft Environmental Assessment and Proposed Habitat Conservation Plan; Receipt of an Application for an Incidental Take Permit, Bluff Point Wind Energy Center, Jay and Randolph Counties, Indiana
Document Number: 2020-27667
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-16
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), have received an application from NextEra Energy Bluff Point LLC (applicant), for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA), for its Bluff Point Wind Energy Center (project). If approved, the ITP would be for a 30-year period and would authorize the incidental take of an endangered species, the Indiana bat, and a threatened species, the northern long-eared bat. The applicant has prepared a habitat conservation plan (HCP) that describes the actions and measures that the applicant would implement to avoid, minimize, and mitigate incidental take of the Indiana bat and northern long-eared bat. We also announce the availability of a draft Environmental Assessment (DEA), which has been prepared in response to the permit application in accordance with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). We request public comment on the application, the DEA, and associated documents.
Draft Amendment to the Environmental Assessment/Habitat Conservation Plan Previously Associated With the 440-acre Schlumberger Property for Concordia University, Texas
Document Number: 2020-27582
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
Concordia University has applied to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for an amended incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act. The requested amended ITP, if granted, would authorize incidental take of the Jollyville Plateau salamander, in addition to the already existing ITP for golden-cheeked warbler. The proposed incidental take would result from activities associated with otherwise lawful activities, including construction, operation, and maintenance of Concordia University, that result in water quality and habitat degradation. Under the National Environmental Policy Act, we invite public comment on the draft environmental assessment on the proposed amended habitat conservation plan and application.
Alaska Subsistence Regional Advisory Council Meetings for 2021
Document Number: 2020-27568
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
The Federal Subsistence Board (Board) announces the public meetings of the 10 Alaska Subsistence Regional Advisory Councils (hereafter, Councils or RACs) for the winter and fall cycles of 2021. The 10 Councils each meet approximately twice a year to provide advice and recommendations to the Federal Subsistence Board about subsistence hunting and fishing issues on Federal public lands in Alaska.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Draft Recovery Plan for Texas Hornshell
Document Number: 2020-27542
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, announce the availability of our draft recovery plan for Texas hornshell, a medium sized freshwater mussel that is listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act. This species is native to the Rio Grande drainage in Texas, New Mexico, and Mexico. We provide this notice to seek comments from the public and Federal, Tribal, State, and local governments.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 12-Month Finding for the Northern Spotted Owl
Document Number: 2020-27198
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce a 12-month finding on a petition to list the northern spotted owl (Strix occidentalis caurina) as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). After a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, we find that reclassification of the northern spotted owl from a threatened species to an endangered species is warranted but precluded by higher priority actions to amend the Lists of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants. We will develop a proposed rule to reclassify the northern spotted owl as our priorities allow. However, we ask the public to submit to us any new information relevant to the status of the subspecies or its habitat at any time.
Receipt of Incidental Take Permit Application and Proposed Habitat Conservation Plan for the Rosewater Wind Farm, White County, Indiana; Categorical Exclusion
Document Number: 2020-27102
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-10
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, have received an application from Rosewater Wind Farm LLC (applicant), for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), for its Rosewater Wind Farm (project). If approved, the ITP would be for a 6- year period and would authorize the incidental take of an endangered species, the Indiana bat, and a threatened species, the northern long- eared bat. The applicant has prepared a habitat conservation plan that describes the actions and measures that the applicant would implement to avoid, minimize, and mitigate incidental take of the Indiana bat and northern long-eared bat. We request public comment on the application, which includes the applicant's proposed habitat conservation plan (HCP), and on the Service's preliminary determination that this HCP qualifies as ``low-effect,'' categorically excluded under the National Environmental Policy Act. To make this determination, we used our environmental action statement and low-effect screening form, both of which are also able for public review.
Privacy Act of 1974; System of Records
Document Number: 2020-27156
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-09
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
The Department of the Interior (DOI) is issuing a public notice of its intent to rescind two U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) Privacy Act systems of records, INTERIOR/FWS-19, Endangered Species Licensee System, and INTERIOR/FWS-34, National Conservation Training Center Training Server System, from its existing inventory. These systems of records notices have been superseded by a Department- wide system of records notice or a FWS system of records notice. This rescindment will eliminate unnecessary duplicate notices and promote the overall streamlining and management of DOI Privacy Act systems of records.
Marine Mammals; Incidental Take During Specified Activities; Proposed Incidental Harassment Authorization for Polar Bears in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska
Document Number: 2020-26747
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-08
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, have received a request under the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 from the Kaktovik I[ntilde]upiat Corporation (KIC), for authorization to take by harassment small numbers of polar bears incidental to seismic survey and associated activities scheduled to occur between January 21, 2021, and September 30, 2021. KIC has requested this authorization for incidental take of polar bears that may result from three-dimensional (3D) seismic surveys in the Marsh Creek East Program Area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The project will consist of activities such as over-flights for aerial infrared surveys in January 2021 and February 2021 to look for maternal polar bear dens; staging and mobilization of vehicles and equipment; small crew surveys for hazards, ice integrity, and snow depth assessment; seismic surveys via a sled camp with rubber-tracked vibrator trucks; camp setup and mobilization; aerial activities for crew and supply transport; digital elevation modeling for river-crossing slope analysis; and cleanup activities during the summer of 2021. We estimate that this project may result in the nonlethal incidental take of up to three polar bears. This proposed authorization, if finalized, will be for take of three polar bears by Level B harassment only. No take by injury or death to polar bears is likely and therefore such take is not included in this proposed authorization.
Draft Environmental Assessment and Proposed Habitat Conservation Plan; Receipt of an Application for an Incidental Take Permit, Meadow Lake Wind Resource Area, White and Benton Counties, Indiana
Document Number: 2020-26667
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-04
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, have received an application from six wholly owned subsidiaries of EDP Renewables North America LLC collectively known as Meadow Lake Group (applicant) for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act, for its Meadow Lake Wind Resource Area wind project. If approved, the ITP would be for a 29-year period and would authorize the incidental take of the Indiana bat and the northern long-eared bat. The applicant has prepared a habitat conservation plan (HCP) that describes the actions and measures that the applicant would implement to avoid, minimize, and mitigate incidental take of the species. We also announce the availability of a draft environmental assessment (DEA), which has been prepared in response to the permit application in accordance with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act. We request public comment on the application and associated documents.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Federal Fish and Wildlife Permit Applications and Reports-Native Endangered and Threatened Species
Document Number: 2020-26614
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-03
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), are proposing to renew an information collection with revisions.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Receipt of Recovery Permit Applications
Document Number: 2020-26605
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-03
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, have received applications for permits to conduct activities intended to enhance the propagation or survival of endangered species under the Endangered Species Act. We invite the public and local, State, Tribal, and Federal agencies to comment on these applications. Before issuing any of the requested permits, we will take into consideration any information that we receive during the public comment period.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Eleven Species Not Warranted for Listing as Endangered or Threatened Species
Document Number: 2020-26139
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-03
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce findings that eleven species are not warranted for listing as endangered or threatened species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). After a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, we find that it is not warranted at this time to list the Doll's daisy, Puget Oregonian, Rocky Mountain monkeyflower, southern white-tailed ptarmigan, tidewater amphipod, tufted puffin, Hamlin Valley pyrg, longitudinal gland pyrg, sub-globose snake pyrg, the Johnson Springs Wetland Complex population of relict dace, or Clear Lake hitch. However, we ask the public to submit to us at any time any new information relevant to the status of any of the species mentioned above or their habitats.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Threatened Species Status for Pinus albicaulis (Whitebark Pine) With Section 4(d) Rule
Document Number: 2020-25331
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-12-02
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), propose to list whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis), a high-elevation tree species found across western North America, as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (Act), as amended. If we finalize this rule as proposed, it would extend the Act's protections to this species. We also propose a rule issued under section 4(d) of the Act that is necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of the species. We have determined that designation of critical habitat for the whitebark pine is not prudent at this time.
Draft Environmental Assessment and Proposed Habitat Conservation Plan; Receipt of an Application for an Incidental Take Permit, High Prairie Wind Energy Facility, Schuyler and Adair Counties, Missouri
Document Number: 2020-26520
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-01
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), have received an application from TG High Prairie, LLC (applicant) for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), for its High Prairie Wind Energy Facility. If approved, the ITP would be for a 6-year period and would authorize the incidental take of covered species, including the endangered Indiana bat, threatened northern long-eared bat, and the little brown bat, currently under discretionary review. While the ITP is for 6 years, the wind energy project is scheduled to be operational for thirty years and intensive monitoring conducted during this permit term will inform the need for future avoidance or a new long-term ITP that will comply with a new NEPA analysis and habitat conservation plan (HCP). The applicant has prepared a HCP that describes the actions and measures that the applicant would implement to avoid, minimize, and mitigate incidental take of the covered species for the first 6 years. We also announce the availability of a draft environmental assessment, which has been prepared in response to the permit application in accordance with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). We request public comment on the application, which includes the applicant's proposed HCP, the Service's draft environmental assessment, prepared pursuant to NEPA and associated documents. We provide this notice to seek review and comment from the public and Federal, Tribal, State and local governments.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Endangered Species Status for the Peppered Chub and Designation of Critical Habitat
Document Number: 2020-25257
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-12-01
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce a 12-month finding on a petition to list the peppered chub (Macrhybopsis tetranema) as endangered or threatened under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). The peppered chub is a freshwater fish historically found in Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas, and is now extirpated in all but approximately 6 percent of its historical range. After review of the best available scientific and commercial information, we find that listing the peppered chub is warranted due to a dramatic reduction in the species' range (a loss of all but one population) and the low resiliency level of the remaining population. The primary stressors affecting the peppered chub are habitat fragmentation and degradation resulting from several sources, as discussed in this document and its supporting materials. Because we have found the species is at risk of extinction, we propose to list the peppered chub as an endangered species under the Act. If we finalize this rule as proposed, it would add this species to the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and extend the Act's protections to the species. We also propose to designate critical habitat for the peppered chub under the Act. The proposed critical habitat designation includes approximately 1,068 river miles (1,719 river kilometers) in four units in Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas. We announce the availability of a draft economic analysis of the proposed critical habitat designation.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Receipt of Recovery Permit Applications
Document Number: 2020-26101
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-25
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, have received applications for permits to conduct activities intended to enhance the propagation or survival of endangered or threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. We invite the public and local, State, Tribal, and Federal agencies to comment on these applications. Before issuing any of the requested permits, we will take into consideration any information that we receive during the public comment period.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Draft Recovery Plan for Sharpnose Shiner and Smalleye Shiner
Document Number: 2020-25918
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-24
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, announce the availability of our draft recovery plan for sharpnose shiner and smalleye shiner, two fish species listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act. The two species are broadcast-spawning minnows currently restricted to the upper Brazos River Basin in north-central Texas. We provide this notice to seek comments from the public and Federal, Tribal, State, and local governments.
Subsistence Management Regulations for Public Lands in Alaska-2020-21 and 2021-22 Subsistence Taking of Wildlife Regulations
Document Number: 2020-22733
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-11-23
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
This final rule establishes regulations for seasons, harvest limits, and methods and means related to the taking of wildlife for subsistence uses in Alaska for the 2020-21 and 2021-22 regulatory years. The Federal Subsistence Board (Board) completes the biennial process of revising subsistence hunting and trapping regulations in even-numbered years and subsistence fishing and shellfish regulations in odd-numbered years; public proposal and review processes take place during the preceding year. The Board also addresses customary and traditional use determinations during the applicable biennial cycle. This rule also revises the customary and traditional use determinations for wildlife.
Proposed Safe Harbor Agreement for Streaked Horned Lark Habitat Restoration, Linn County, Oregon
Document Number: 2020-25697
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-20
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), have received an enhancement of survival permit application from Scott Erion pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973 for streaked horned lark (lark) which is federally listed as threatened. The permit application includes a draft safe harbor agreement (SHA) developed for the conservation of the lark. The permit if issued would authorize the incidental take of the lark associated with habitat management actions intended to benefit the lark. We have prepared a draft environment action statement (EAS) for our preliminary determination that the proposed SHA and permit issuance may be eligible for categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act. We are making the permit application package, including the proposed SHA and draft EAS, available for public review and comment.
Application for an Enhancement of Survival Permit; Draft Candidate Conservation Agreement With Assurances for the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard (Sceloporus arenicolus); Andrews, Gaines, Crane, Ector, Ward, and Winkler Counties, Texas
Document Number: 2020-25685
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-20
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
This notice advises the public that Canyon Environmental, LLC (applicant) has applied to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) for an enhancement of survival permit (permit) supported by the draft Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances for the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard (Sceloporus arenicolus) (CCAA) in Andrews, Gaines, Crane, Ector, Ward, and Winkler Counties, Texas. The applicant has applied to the Service for the permit pursuant to the Endangered Species Act. The requested permit, if approved, would authorize incidental take of the dunes sagebrush lizard (DSL), resulting from activities completed pursuant to the draft CCAA. If approved, the requested permit would become effective should the DSL become federally listed during the life of the permit and CCAA. The proposed permit would have a term of up to 23 years. We also announce the availability of a draft environmental assessment (EA) that has been prepared to evaluate the permit application in accordance with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act. We are making the permit application package, including the draft CCAA and draft EA, as well as the issuance criteria for the requested permit, available for public review and comment.
Receipt of Incidental Take Permit Application and Proposed Habitat Conservation Plan for the Sand Skink and Blue-Tailed Mole Skink; Highlands County, FL; Categorical Exclusion
Document Number: 2020-25567
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-19
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce receipt of an application from Palmetto Avon Park-HWY 17, LLC (applicant) for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act. The applicant requests the ITP to take the federally listed sand skink and blue-tailed mole skink incidental to the construction of a commercial development in Highlands County, Florida. We request public comment on the application, which includes the applicant's proposed habitat conservation plan (HCP), and on the Service's preliminary determination that this HCP qualifies as ``low-effect,'' categorically excluded under the National Environmental Policy Act. To make this determination, we used our environmental action statement and low-effect screening form, both of which are also available for public review.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Threatened Species Status With Section 4(d) Rule for the Upper Coosa River Distinct Population Segment of Frecklebelly Madtom and Designation of Critical Habitat
Document Number: 2020-24208
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-11-19
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce a 12-month finding on a petition to list the frecklebelly madtom (Noturus munitus), a fish species from Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee, as an endangered or threatened species and designate critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). After a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, we find that listing the frecklebelly madtom as an endangered or a threatened species throughout all of its range is not warranted. However, we determined that listing is warranted for a distinct population segment (DPS) of the frecklebelly madtom in the Upper Coosa River in Georgia and Tennessee. Accordingly, we propose to list the Upper Coosa River DPS of the frecklebelly madtom as a threatened species with a rule issued under section 4(d) of the Act (``4(d) rule''). If we finalize this rule as proposed, it would add this DPS to the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and extend the Act's protections to the DPS. We also propose to designate critical habitat for the Upper Coosa River DPS under the Act. In total, approximately 134 river miles (216 kilometers) in Georgia and Tennessee fall within the boundaries of the proposed critical habitat designation. We also announce the availability of a draft economic analysis (DEA) of the proposed designation of critical habitat for the Upper Coosa River DPS.
Draft Safe Harbor Agreements and Draft Environmental Assessments for the Marbled Murrelet in Washington State
Document Number: 2020-25359
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-18
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), received two applications for enhancement of survival permits (permits) pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended. The permits would authorize the incidental take of the threatened marbled murrelet associated with forest management actions on private lands. The applications each include a safe harbor agreement (SHA), describing the actions the applicants will take to achieve a net conservation benefit on their lands for the species. We also announce the availability of two draft environmental assessments (EAs) addressing the effects of the proposed permits and SHAs on the human environment in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act. We invite comments from all interested parties.
Migratory Bird Subsistence Harvest in Alaska; Updates to the Regulations
Document Number: 2020-24195
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-11-17
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service or we) is revising the migratory bird subsistence harvest regulations in Alaska. These regulations allow for the continuation of customary and traditional subsistence uses of migratory birds in Alaska and prescribe regional information on when and where the harvesting of birds may occur. These regulations were developed under a co-management process involving the Service, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, and Alaska Native representatives. This rule incorporates regulatory revisions requested by these partners.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Reclassification of the Red-Cockaded Woodpecker From Endangered to Threatened With a Section 4(d) Rule
Document Number: 2020-25280
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-11-16
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), recently proposed to reclassify the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker (Dryobates borealis) as a threatened species with a rule issued under section 4(d) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (Act), as amended. We announced a 60-day public comment period on the proposed rule, ending December 7, 2020. We now announce a public informational meeting and public hearing on the proposed rule.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Review of Domestic Species That Are Candidates for Listing as Endangered or Threatened; Annual Notification of Findings on Resubmitted Petitions; Annual Description of Progress on Listing Actions
Document Number: 2020-24198
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-11-16
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
In this document, known as a Candidate Notice of Review (CNOR), we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), present an updated list of domestic plant and animal species that we regard as candidates for or have proposed for addition to the Lists of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended. This document also includes our findings on resubmitted petitions and describes our progress in revising the Lists of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants (Lists) during the period October 1, 2018, through September 30, 2020. Combined with other decisions for individual species that were published separately from this CNOR in the past year, the current number of domestic species that are candidates for listing is 11. Identification of candidate species can assist environmental planning efforts by providing advance notice of potential listings, and by allowing landowners and resource managers to alleviate threats and thereby possibly remove the need to list species as endangered or threatened. Even if we subsequently list a candidate species, the early notice provided here could result in more options for species management and recovery by prompting earlier candidate conservation measures to alleviate threats to the species. This document also adds the Sonoran desert tortoise back to the candidate list as a result of an August 3, 2020, court-approved settlement agreement.
Notice of Availability of the Final Environmental Impact Statement To Consider a Highway Right-of-Way, Amended Habitat Conservation Plan and Issuance of an Incidental Take Permit for the Mojave Desert Tortoise, and Proposed Resource Management Plan Amendments, Washington County, UT
Document Number: 2020-24999
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-13
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management
In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), as amended, the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (FLPMA), as amended, the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009 (OPLMA), and the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA), as amended, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), as co-lead agencies, announce the availability of the Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to consider a right- of-way (ROW) application (referred to henceforth as the Northern Corridor) submitted by the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) and Proposed Amendments to the St. George Field Office and Red Cliffs National Conservation Area (NCA) Resource Management Plans (RMPs).
Endangered Species; Receipt of Recovery Permit Application
Document Number: 2020-25020
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-12
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, have received an application for a permit to conduct activities intended to enhance the propagation and survival of endangered species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended. We invite the public and local, State, Tribal, and Federal agencies to comment on this application. Before issuing the requested permit, we will take into consideration any information that we receive during the public comment period.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Threatened Species Status With Section 4(d) Rule for Sickle Darter
Document Number: 2020-24471
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-11-12
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce a 12-month finding on a petition to list the sickle darter (Percina williamsi), a fish species from the upper Tennessee River drainage in North Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia, as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). After a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, we find that listing the species is warranted. Accordingly, we propose to list the sickle darter as a threatened species with a rule issued under section 4(d) of the Act (``4(d) rule''). If we finalize this rule as proposed, it would add this species to the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and extend the Act's protections to the species.
Agency Information Collection Activities; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Agreements With Friends Organizations
Document Number: 2020-24802
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-09
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), are proposing a new information collection in use without an OMB control number.
Final Environmental Impact Statement and Final Deschutes Basin Habitat Conservation Plan; Klamath, Deschutes, Jefferson, Crook, Wasco, and Sherman Counties, Oregon
Document Number: 2020-24636
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-06
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
In accordance with the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service (together, the Services), announce the availability of a final environmental impact statement (FEIS) and habitat conservation plan (HCP) addressing covered activities by the Deschutes Basin Board of Control (DBBC)'s eight- member irrigation districts, and the City of Prineville (applicants). The applicants are seeking incidental take permits (ITPs) covering the incidental take of four covered species over a 30-year period. The HCP describes the steps the applicants will take to minimize, mitigate, and monitor the impacts of incidental take of the covered species. The FEIS has been prepared, pursuant to NEPA, in response to these applications.
Hunting and Shooting Sports Conservation Council; Public Meeting by Videoconference
Document Number: 2020-24619
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-06
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, announce a public meeting via videoconference of the Hunting and Shooting Sports Conservation Council (Council), in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The videoconference is open to the public.
Draft Habitat Conservation Plan and Draft Environmental Assessment for the California Department of Parks and Recreation, Oceano Dunes District, San Luis Obispo County, California
Document Number: 2020-24587
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-05
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the availability of a draft habitat conservation plan (HCP) and associated draft environmental assessment (EA) for California Department of Parks and Recreation (CDPR) activities at Pismo State Beach and Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area, San Luis Obispo County, California. The CDPR developed the draft HCP as part of their application for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act. The Service prepared a draft EA in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act to evaluate the potential effects to the natural and human environment resulting from issuing an ITP to CDPR. We invite public comment on these documents.
Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force Meeting
Document Number: 2020-24348
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-11-03
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service gives notice of a teleconference/web meeting of the Aquatic Nuisance Species (ANS) Task Force, in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Removing the Gray Wolf (Canis lupus) From the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife
Document Number: 2020-24171
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-11-03
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service or USFWS), have evaluated the classification status of the gray wolf (Canis lupus) entities currently listed in the lower 48 United States and Mexico under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). Based on our evaluation, we are removing the gray wolf entities in the lower 48 United States and Mexico, except for the Mexican wolf (C. l. baileyi), that are currently on the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. We are taking this action because the best available scientific and commercial data available establish that the gray wolf entities in the lower 48 United States do not meet the definitions of a threatened species or an endangered species under the Act. The effect of this rulemaking action is that C. lupus is not classified as a threatened or endangered species under the Act. This rule does not have any effect on the separate listing of the Mexican wolf subspecies (Canis lupus baileyi) as endangered under the Act. In addition, we announce a 90-day finding on a petition to maintain protections for the gray wolf in the lower 48 United States as endangered or threatened distinct population segments. Based on our review, we find that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned actions may be warranted. Therefore, we are not initiating status reviews of the petitioned entities in response to the petition.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Endangered Species Status for the Canoe Creek Clubshell and Designation of Critical Habitat
Document Number: 2020-22007
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-11-03
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce a 12-month finding on a petition to list the Canoe Creek clubshell (Pleurobema athearni), a freshwater mussel species endemic to a single watershed in north-central Alabama, as an endangered or threatened species and to designate critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). After a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, we find that listing the species is warranted. Accordingly, we propose to list the Canoe Creek clubshell as an endangered species under the Act. We also propose to designate critical habitat for the Canoe Creek clubshell under the Act. In total, approximately 58.5 river kilometers (36.3 river miles) in St. Clair and Etowah Counties, Alabama, fall within the boundaries of the proposed critical habitat designation. Finally, we announce the availability of a draft economic analysis (DEA) of the proposed designation of critical habitat for the Canoe Creek clubshell.
National Wildlife Refuge System; Use of Electric Bicycles
Document Number: 2020-22107
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-11-02
Agency: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, issue regulations pertaining to the use of electric bicycles (otherwise known as ``e- bikes''). These regulations have the potential to facilitate increased recreational opportunities for all Americans, especially for people with physical limitations. This rule will provide guidance and controls for the use of e-bikes in the National Wildlife Refuge System.