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Species of Concern
March 19, 2008
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Will Study Coaster Brook Trout
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has found that a petition to list the coaster brook trout as endangered provides substantial information, prompting a status review of this form of brook trout found only in the Great Lakes and its tributaries.
On March 1, 2006, the Service received a petition from the Sierra Club Mackinac Chapter and the Huron Mountain Club asking the Service to list the coaster brook trout as endangered and to designate critical habitat. Additional information was received on May 25, 2006. Under the Endangered Species Act, the Service is required to make a determination within 90 days on whether the petition contains enough information to indicate listing may be warranted. The Service was unable to begin work on the 90-day finding until the following fiscal year due to budget restraints.
The Service will now begin a status review to gather more information about the coaster brook trout, and is asking the public for input, including historical and current status; distribution; ecology; ongoing conservation; and threats to the species. Once the information is gathered and reviewed, the Service will decide whether the coaster brook trout warrants listing under the Endangered Species Act. If this is the case, the Service will propose the species for listing.
Coaster brook trout are a form of brook trout that spend a portion of their life cycle in the Great Lakes. At one time, there were more than 50 runs in the U.S. waters of Lake Superior. They were also found in Lakes Huron and Michigan, where they are now extirpated. Today, there are four viable, self-sustaining populations in Lake Superior, all in Michigan: one in the Salmon Trout River in the Upper Peninsula and three on Isle Royale.
The Service’s 90-day finding on the petition to list the coaster brook trout as endangered appears in the March 20, 2008, Federal Register. Comments and information about the coaster brook trout should be submitted to the Service by May 19, 2008, to be considered in the status review, and should be sent to Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. Comments may also be sent to Public Comments Processing, Attn:FWS-R3-ES-2008-0030; Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 222; Arlington, VA 22203.
For more information on the coaster brook trout, visit the Service’s Midwest website at http://www.fws.gov/midwest
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.