[Federal Register: April 20, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 77)]
[Page 21203-21204]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Endangered and Threatened Species Permit Application

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of receipt of permit application and availability of 
Habitat Conservation Plan and Environmental Assessment.


SUMMARY: This notice advises the public that Magic Carpet Woods 
Association (Applicant) has applied to the Fish and Wildlife Service 
(Service) for an incidental take permit pursuant to section 10(a)(1)(B) 
of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). This notice is 
provided pursuant to section 10(c) of the Endangered Species Act of 
1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531, et seq.). The application has been 
assigned permit number TE 025433. The applicant requests a permit to 
authorize the incidental take associated with harassment (i.e., harm) 
of the piping plover (Charadrius melodus) which is federally listed as 
endangered. The permit is requested for a period of 25 years. The take 
would occur as a result of residential construction adjacent to Lake 
Michigan in Leelanau Township, Leelanau County, Michigan.
    The Service also announces the availability of a Habitat 
Conservation Plan (HCP), draft Implementing Agreement, and Draft 
Environmental Assessment (EA) for the incidental take application. 
Copies of the application package may be obtained by making a request 
to the Regional Office address below. Requests must be submitted in 
writing to be processed. This notice is provided pursuant to Section 
10(c) of the Act and National Environmental Policy Act Regulations (40 
CFR 1506.6).

DATES: Written comments on the permit application and HCP should be 
received on or before May 22, 2000.

ADDRESSES: Individuals wishing copies of the permit application, HCP, 
Implementing Agreement, or Draft EA, may contact the Service's Regional 
Office, Fort Snelling, Minnesota. The documents will also be available 
for public inspection, by appointment, during normal business hours at 
the Regional Office or the East Lansing Field Office. Written data or 
comments concerning the application, EA, or HCP should be submitted to 
the Regional Office. Please reference permit under TE-025433 in such 

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 1 Federal Drive, Fort Snelling,

[[Page 21204]]

Minnesota 55111-4056, Telephone: 612/713-5343, Fax: 612/713-5292.
Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, East Lansing Field 
Office, 2651 Coolidge Rd., Suite 101, East Lansing, Michigan 48823-
6316, Telephone: 517/351-6274.

Coordinator, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Fort Snelling, Minnesota, 
telephone 612/713-5343.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Under Section 9 of the Act and applicable 
federal regulations, the ``taking'' of a species listed as endangered 
or threatened is prohibited. However, the Service, under limited 
circumstances, may issue permits to ``take'' listed species, provided 
such take is incidental to, and not the purpose of, an otherwise lawful 
activity. Regulations governing permits for endangered species are 
promulgated in 50 CFR 17.22 Regulations governing permits for 
threatened species are promulgated in 50 CFR 17.32.


    Piping plovers are sensitive to human disturbance and the effects 
of human activity throughout the Great Lakes and Atlantic Coast 
breeding range lead to its listing as an endangered species in 1985. 
Human activity remains the primary threat to the species survival in 
the Great Lakes region. The proposed residential development consists 
of 13 single family residences located within the forested portion of a 
91 acre tract at the north end of Kehl Road in Leelanau Township, 
Leelanau County, Michigan (SW\1/4\SE\1/4\, SE\1/4\SW\1/4\ Section 14, 
T32N R11W). Of the total 91 acre parcel proposed for development, a 
maximum of 3 acres may be potential piping plover habitat. The 
shoreline beach/dune area is an average of 85 feet wide (1999) and 
consists of equal portions of non-vegetated beach and vegetated low 
dunes with an abrupt edge along the forested area. The beach within the 
proposed development is not good nesting habitat and there are no 
records of piping plover nesting or other use on the property. 
Excellent nesting habitat occurs 0.5 mile west of the proposed 
development. Three and two pairs of piping plovers nested within 
Leelanau State Park in 1998 and 1999, respectively. Seven young plovers 
fledged in 1998, while seven hatched but disappeared prior to fledging 
in 1999. The Service believes the Applicant's property provides 
valuable foraging habitat for plovers nesting nearby. There is also 
potential for future plover nesting on the Applicant's property if an 
expanded plover population exhibits variation in breeding habitat 
characteristics or natural forces alter current beach characteristics.
    The open dune portion of the Applicant's property contains several 
hundred individual Pitcher's thistle (Cirsium pitcheri), a threatened 
plant species. Boardwalks may be constructed through the vegetated 
dunes, but otherwise the project will not result in any construction on 
or other physical alteration of the beach portion of the property. 
Construction of the proposed project would result in human activity 
along a section of beach presently associated with undeveloped land. 
The HCP provides conservation or protective measures which would 
minimize or avoid potential negative effects to piping plovers of the 
proposed development. Protective measures include seasonal restriction 
of human use of the beach, control of domestic animals and other wild 
or feral predators, control of garbage, and the presence of a piping 
plover steward during selected periods. Unregulated trespass of the 
proposed development is expected to be eliminated by the presence of 
residence owners. No critical habitat for listed species currently 
occurs on the project site. However its consideration as piping plover 
critical habitat is expected by June 2000. The Proposed Action consists 
of the issuance of an incidental take permit and implementation of the 
HCP, which includes measures to minimize or avoid impacts of the 
project on the piping plover. The EA considers four alternatives to the 
Proposed Action. We will evaluate the permit application, the HCP, and 
comments submitted thereon to determine whether the application meets 
the requirements of section 10(a) of the Act. If the requirements are 
met, the Service will issue a permit to Magic Carpet Woods Association 
for the incidental take of the piping plover from human activity 
associated with residential development on the Association property. 
The final permit decision will be made no sooner than 30 days from the 
date of this notice.

    Dated: April 12, 2000.
T.J. Miller,
Acting Assistant Regional Director, Ecological Services, Region 3, Fort 
Snelling, Minnesota.
[FR Doc. 00-9673 Filed 4-19-00; 8:45 am]