Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Reclassification of the Relict Darter From Endangered to Threatened With a Section 4(d) Rule
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), propose to reclassify (downlist) the relict darter (Etheostoma chienense) from endangered to threatened under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). The relict darter is a fish species that occupies the Bayou de Chien stream system in western Kentucky. Our evaluation of the best available scientific and commercial information indicates that the species' status has improved such that it is not currently in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range, but that it is still likely to become so in the foreseeable future. We also propose a rule under section 4(d) of the Act that provides for the conservation of the relict darter. In addition, we announce the availability of the draft recovery plan for the relict darter. The draft recovery plan includes specific recovery objectives and criteria based on the species status assessment. We request review of this proposal and of the draft recovery plan and comment from local, State, and Federal agencies, nongovernmental organizations, Tribes, and the public.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Threatened Species Status With Section 4(d) Rule for Western Fanshell and “Ouachita” Fanshell and Designation of Critical Habitat
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), propose to list the western fanshell (Cyprogenia aberti), a freshwater mussel species from Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma, and the ``Ouachita'' fanshell (Cyprogenia cf. aberti), a freshwater mussel species from Arkansas and Louisiana, as threatened species and to designate critical habitat for these species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). This document also proposes a rule issued under section 4(d) of the Act (4(d) rule) for these mussel species and serves as our 12-month finding on a petition to list the western fanshell. The proposed critical habitat designation for the western fanshell totals approximately 360 river miles (579 kilometers), all of which are occupied by the species, in Arkansas, Kansas, and Missouri, and the proposed critical habitat designation for the ``Ouachita'' fanshell totals approximately 294 river miles (474 kilometers), all of which are occupied by the species, in Arkansas. We also announce the availability of a draft economic analysis (DEA) of the proposed designation of critical habitat for the western fanshell and ``Ouachita'' fanshell. If we finalize this rule as proposed, it would add these species to the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and extend the Act's protections to these species and their designated critical habitats.