[Federal Register: November 9, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 218)]
[Proposed Rules]               
[Page 67335-67343]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 17

RIN 1018-AH70

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Proposed 
Endangered Status for Polygonum hickmanii (Scotts Valley polygonum)

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Proposed rule.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), propose 
endangered status pursuant to the Endangered Species Act (Act) of 1973, 
as amended, for Polygonum hickmanii (Scotts Valley polygonum). 
Polygonum hickmanii is restricted to two sites in northern Scotts 
Valley, Santa Cruz County, California. The plant is threatened by 
alteration of habitat due to urban development and associated 
disturbances, displacement by nonnative grasses, and the increased 
chance of extinction due to the small numbers of individuals and 
limited amount of habitat occupied by this species. The effects of 
these threats are exacerbated by the inadequate design of preserves 
meant to protect the species. This proposed rule, if made final, would 
extend the Act's protection to this plant.

DATES: All comments, including written and email from all interested 
parties must be received by January 8, 2001. Public hearing requests 
must be received by December 26, 2000.

ADDRESSES: If you wish to comment, you may submit your comments and 
materials concerning this proposal by any one of several methods:
    1. You may submit written comments to the Field Supervisor, Ventura 
Fish and Wildlife Office, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 2493 Portola 
Road, Suite B, Ventura, California 93003.
    2. You may send comments by e-mail to svpolygonum@r1.fws.gov. See 
the Public Comments Solicited section below for file format and other 
information about electronic filing.
    3. You may hand-deliver comments to our Ventura Fish and Wildlife 
office at 2493 Portola Road, Suite B, Ventura, California.
    Comments and materials received, as well as supporting 
documentation used in the preparation of this proposed rule, will be 
available for public inspection, by appointment, during normal business 
hours at the above address.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Carl Benz, Assistant Field Supervisor, 
Listing and Recovery, Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office at the above 
address or telephone number 805/644-1766 or facsimile 805/644-3958.



    Polygonum hickmanii (Scotts Valley polygonum) is a recently 
described endemic species from Scotts Valley, Santa Cruz County, 
California (Hinds and Morgan 1995). The species was named after James 
C. Hickman, editor of the Jepson Manual (1993) and author of the 
chapter on the genus Polygonum in the same reference. He concurred with 
Morgan's assessment that the taxon was distinct (J.C. Hickman, in litt. 
1991), but died before coauthoring the publication of a name. Randy 
Morgan made the type collection in 1993 from a ``grassland N of Navarra 
Drive, W of Carbonero Creek'' (Hinds and Morgan 1995). The plant is a 
small, erect, taprooted annual in the buckwheat family (Polygonaceae). 
It grows from 2 to 5 centimeters (cm) (1 to 2 inches (in.)) tall, and 
can be either single stemmed or profusely branching near the base in 
more mature plants. The linear-shaped leaves are 0.5 to 3.5 cm (0.2 to 
1.4 in.) long and 1 to 1.5 cm (0.4 to 0.6 in.) wide and tipped with a 
sharp point. The single white flowers consist of two outer tepals 
(petal-like structure) and three inner tepals and are found in the 
axils of the bracteal leaves (modified leaves near the flower). The 
plant flowers from late May to August. Seed production ranges from a 
few dozen seeds in a typical individual to as many as two hundred in a 
particularly robust individual (Randy Morgan, biological consultant, 
pers. comm. 1998). The nearest known location of a closely related 
species, P. parryi, is at Mount Hamilton, about 48 kilometers (km) (30 
miles (mi)) inland. Polygonum hickmanii differs from P. parryi in its 
larger white flowers, longer leaves, larger anthers and achenes, and 
longer, straight stem sheath (Hinds and Morgan

[[Page 67336]]

1995). According to Harold Hinds, author for the genus Polygonum in an 
upcoming volume of the Flora of North America (Flora of North America 
Editorial Committee, in prep.), the distinctness of P. hickmanii as a 
species will continue to be recognized in that volume (Harold Hinds, 
University of New Brunswick, pers. comm. 1998).
    The available information suggests that Polygonum hickmanii has 
always been limited in distribution to the northern Scotts Valley area 
in Santa Cruz County, California. Two bodies of evidence support this 
theory. First, none of the herbarium collections of other Polygonum 
species that were checked in preparation of the publication of the name 
for P. hickmanii matched those collected from Scotts Valley. Herbaria 
that were searched included the Dudley Herbarium at Stanford 
University, the Jepson and University of California (UC) herbaria 
located at UC Berkeley, and the herbarium at the Missouri Botanic 
Garden (H. Hinds, in litt. 1998; R. Morgan, pers. comm. 1998). 
Secondly, predictive searches of other potentially suitable habitat in 
Santa Cruz County (based on soil type, local climate, and associated 
species) have failed to locate any additional colonies of P. hickmanii 
(R. Morgan, pers. comm. 1998).
    Polygonum hickmanii is known from two sites about 0.6 km (1 mi) 
apart at the northern end of Scotts Valley. The plant is found on 
gently sloping to nearly level fine-textured shallow soils over 
outcrops of Santa Cruz mudstone and Purisima sandstone (Hinds and 
Morgan 1995). It occurs with the endangered Chorizanthe robusta var. 
hartwegii (Scotts Valley spineflower) (59 FR 5499) and other small 
annual herbs in patches within a more extensive annual grassland 
habitat. These small patches have been referred to as ``wildflower 
fields'' because they support a large number of native herbs, in 
contrast to the adjacent annual grasslands that support a greater 
number of nonnative grasses and herbs. While the wildflower fields are 
underlain by shallow, well-draining soils, the surrounding annual 
grasslands are underlain by deeper soils with a greater water-holding 
capacity, and therefore more easily support the growth of nonnative 
grasses and herbs. The surface soil texture in the wildflower fields 
tends to be consolidated and crusty rather than loose and sandy (Biotic 
Resources Group (BRG) 1998). Elevation of the sites is from 215 to 246 
meters (m) (700 to 800 feet (ft)) (Hinds and Morgan 1995). The climate 
in the city of Santa Cruz, 13 km (8 mi) to the south, is characterized 
by an average of 77 cm (30 in.) of rain per year, and an average 
temperature of 14 degrees Celsius (57 degrees Fahrenheit), while the 
city of Los Gatos, 16 km (10 mi) to the north, averages 120 cm (51 in.) 
of rain per year, with an average temperature of 15 degrees Celsius (58 
degrees Fahrenheit) (Worldclimate 1998).
    Polygonum hickmanii is associated with a number of native herbs 
including Chorizanthe robusta var. hartwegii, Lasthenia californica 
(goldfields), Minuartia douglasii (sandwort), Minuartia californica 
(California sandwort), Gilia clivorum (gilia), Castilleja densiflora 
(owl's clover), Lupinus nanus (sky lupine), Brodiaea terrestris 
(brodiaea), Stylocline amphibola (Mount Diablo cottonweed), Trifolium 
grayii (Gray's clover), and Hemizonia corymbosa (coast tarplant). 
Nonnative species present include Filago gallica (filago) and Vulpia 
myuros (rattail) (California Natural Diversity Data Base (CNDDB) 1998; 
R. Morgan, pers. comm. 1998). In many cases, the habitat also supports 
a crust of mosses and lichens (BRG 1998).
    Morgan observed a sphecid wasp (family Sphecidae) visitation to an 
individual Polygonum hickmanii (R. Morgan, pers. comm. 1998). Other 
potential pollinators have not been identified at this time, and the 
degree to which P. hickmanii depends on insect pollinators (rather than 
being self-pollinated) has not been determined.
    For purposes of this rule, a cluster of individuals of Polygonum 
hickmanii will be referred to as a ``colony.'' Because of the close 
proximity of many of the clusters to each other (less than 0.4 km (0.2 
mi) apart), it is uncertain whether these clusters are patches within a 
metapopulation (population consisting of interconnected 
subpopulations), true colonies, or separate populations. The 
approximate area occupied by any one colony ranges from the smallest at 
1.5 m by 1.5 m (5 ft by 5 ft) to the largest at 15 m by 9 m (50 ft by 
30 ft). There are approximately 11 colonies of P. hickmanii in total, 
which together occupy less than 0.4 hectare (ha) (1 acre (ac)).
    The Polygonum hickmanii colonies are split between two sites. The 
first site is located north of Casa Way and west of Glenwood Drive in 
northern Scotts Valley. Referred to as the Glenwood site, it contains 
five colonies on two parcels of land. One of these colonies is situated 
within a 3.6 ha (9 ac) preserve on a 19.4 ha (48 ac) parcel that is 
owned by the Scotts Valley Unified School District and is referred to 
as the ``School District'' colony (Denise Duffy and Associates 1998). 
The other four colonies at the Glenwood site are located approximately 
0.21 km (0.13 mi) to the west of the School District colony, on a 
parcel of land owned by the Salvation Army (CNDDB 1998). These four 
colonies are referred to as the ``Salvation Army'' colonies.
    The second site contains six colonies and is referred to as the 
``Polo Ranch'' site. Located just east of Highway 17 and north of 
Navarra Road in northern Scotts Valley, the Polo Ranch site is 
approximately 1.6 km (1 mi) east of the Salvation Army and School 
District colonies. These six colonies are situated within 0.2 km (0.1 
mi) of one another, and all of these colonies occur on a parcel owned 
by Greystone Homes (Kathleen Lyons, BRG, in litt. 1997).
    Being a short-lived annual species, the total number of individuals 
can vary from year to year. In 1998, the total number of individuals 
found at the Glenwood site was 153 on the School District parcel and 
approximately 2,000 on the Salvation Army parcel (K. Lyons, pers. comm. 
1998). In 1997, the total number of individuals on the Polo Ranch site 
was approximately 2,140 (K. Lyons in litt. 1997).
    Polygonum hickmanii is threatened with extinction by habitat 
alteration due to secondary impacts of urban development occurring 
within close proximity. Urban development includes the proposed 
construction and operation of a high school; installation and 
maintenance of water delivery pipelines, access roads, and water tanks; 
and currently existing and proposed housing. Results of a field survey 
conducted on the School District colony identified that the P. 
hickmanii may occur in the vicinity of the alternative access routes to 
the tank sites and that potential impacts from the construction 
activities may be significant (Service, in litt. 1998).
    The kinds of habitat alterations expected to impact Polygonum 
hickmanii as a result of development include changes in hydrologic 
conditions; soil compaction; increased disturbance by humans, pets, and 
bicycle traffic; the inadvertent application of herbicides and 
pesticides; dumping of yard wastes; and the introduction of nonnative 
species. These habitat alterations are substantial enough that they are 
even destabilizing the proposed preserves and open space areas intended 
to protect P. hickmanii and making these areas inadequate for 
maintaining viable populations of this species (Service, in litt. 
1998). Studies on habitat fragmentation and preserves established in 
urbanized settings have shown that these preserves gradually become 
destabilized from external forces (i.e., changes in the hydrologic

[[Page 67337]]

conditions, soil compaction, etc.), resulting in preserves that are no 
longer able to support the species they were established to protect 
(Kelly and Rotenberry 1993).
    The chance of random extinction for Polygonum hickmanii is also 
increased due to the small numbers of individuals and limited area 
occupied by the species (Shaffer 1981).

Previous Federal Action

    We first became aware of Polygonum hickmanii in the course of 
proposing to list Chorizanthe robusta var. hartwegii for Federal 
listing in 1992. At that time, however, a name for the taxon had not 
formally been published, and so it could not be considered for listing 
under the Act. Once the name, P. hickmanii, was published by Hinds and 
Morgan (1995), we reviewed information in our existing files, in the 
California Natural Diversity Data Base, and new information on proposed 
projects being submitted to us for our review, and determined that 
sufficient information existed to believe that listing might be 
warranted. Polygonum hickmanii was included in the list of candidate 
species published in the Federal Register on October 25, 1999 (64 FR 
    The processing of this proposed rule conforms with our current 
Listing Priority Guidance published in the Federal Register on October 
22, 1999 (64 FR 57114). The guidance clarified the order in which we 
process rulemakings. Highest priority is processing emergency listing 
rules for any species determined to face a significant and imminent 
risk to its well-being. Second priority is processing final 
determinations on proposed additions to the lists of endangered and 
threatened wildlife and plants. Third priority is processing new 
proposals to add species to the lists (such as this proposed rule for 
Polygonum hickmanii). The processing of administrative petition 
findings (petitions filed under section 4 of the Act) is the fourth 

Summary of Factors Affecting the Species

    Section 4(a)(1) of the Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) and regulations 
(50 CFR part 424) promulgated to implement the Act set forth the 
procedures for adding species to the Federal lists. A species may be 
determined to be an endangered or threatened species due to one or more 
of the five factors described in section 4(a)(1). These factors and 
their application to Polygonum hickmanii H. R. Hinds and R. Morgan are 
as follows:
    A. The present or threatened destruction, modification, or 
curtailment of its habitat or range. In addition to the colonies of 
Polygonum hickmanii at the Glenwood and Polo Ranch sites, other 
colonies of P. hickmanii may have occurred in Scotts Valley prior to 
publication of the species name in 1995. An existing housing 
development bordering the south side of the Glenwood site (Glen View) 
was built in the mid-1980s, and one development bordering the south 
side of the Polo Ranch site (Navarra Drive) was built in the 1970s. The 
environmental analyses done at those times would not have recognized P. 
hickmanii as a distinct taxon.
    None of the occupied habitat for Polygonum hickmanii is targeted 
for direct destruction; however, all occupied habitat will be subject 
to habitat alteration resulting from current and proposed projects. At 
the Glenwood site, construction of a high school was initiated in June 
1998. The colony of P. hickmanii on this site is within an area 
designated as a grassland preserve intended to protect a number of 
sensitive plant species, including P. hickmanii, Minuartia californica 
(California sandwort), Plagiobothrys diffusus (San Francisco popcorn 
flower), and the endangered Chorizanthe robusta var. hartwegii. The 
preserve is 2 ha (4 ac) in size, and is adjacent to a wetland preserve 
of slightly smaller size. The two preserves combined form a 3.6 ha (9 
ac) area, linear in shape, sandwiched between high school playing 
fields to the north and the existing Glen View development to the 
south. The colony of P. hickmanii is 18 m (60 ft) away from the edge of 
the preserve nearest to the playing field. A management plan for the 
grasslands preserve includes prescriptions for boundary protection, 
habitat enhancement, control of nonnative plant species, and a 10-year 
monitoring program (BRG 1998). Although the effectiveness of this 
management plan has not been demonstrated yet, P. hickmanii will likely 
still be subject to habitat alteration due to the small size of the 
preserve and its proximity to other land uses. Problems with managing 
small preserves within urban areas have been documented previously 
(Jensen 1987; Clark et al. 1998; Howald 1993; Service 1995). See Factor 
E for additional discussion on the failure of preserve design to 
provide for long-term conservation.
    The kinds of habitat alteration that are anticipated to result from 
the high school project include changes in surface hydrologic 
conditions due to the increased watering of the ballfield up slope from 
the preserve; changes in surface water quality due to the application 
of fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides on the ballfield and adjacent 
areas up slope from the preserve; an increase in the number of 
nonnative plant species that will likely invade from adjacent newly 
altered areas; and an increase in the amount of soil disturbance and 
soil compaction caused by the increased numbers of students, pets, and 
bicycles coming into the preserve from adjacent areas. The nature of 
the thin soils and the crusts of mosses and lichens they support make 
them particularly vulnerable to any form of surface disturbance 
(Belknap 1990).
    The Scotts Valley Water District recently approved the construction 
of a series of pipelines, maintenance roads, and tanks to distribute 
recycled water in the northern Scotts Valley area (EMC Planning Group 
1998; Scotts Valley Water District 1998). One pipeline and an all-
weather maintenance road pass through the southwestern corner of the 
preserve, then continue to the north and west onto a parcel owned by 
the Salvation Army where a water tank would be installed. As originally 
proposed, this route was to come within 23 m (75 ft) of the colonies of 
Polygonum hickmanii on the Salvation Army parcel, and within 18 m (60 
ft) of the endangered Chorizanthe robusta var. hartwegii (K. Lyons, 
pers. comm. 1998). However, when road grading was initiated in July 
1999, grading plans were not followed closely. Moreover, measures to 
minimize and mitigate impacts to sensitive resources included in the 
approved project were not implemented. As a result, road grading came 
to within 3 m (10 ft) of P. hickmanii, and to within 6 m (20 ft) of C. 
r. var. hartwegii (Vince Cheap, California Native Plant Society, in 
litt. 1999).
    The kinds of habitat alteration that are anticipated to impact P. 
hickmanii from the Water District's project include changes in surface 
hydrology due to the placement of the road upslope from the colonies; 
changes in surface water quality due to the application of herbicides, 
pesticides, and tackifiers (dust reducing substances) on the road and 
roadsides upslope from the colonies; an increase in the amount of soil 
siltation from the up slope roadbank; soil compaction and disturbance; 
and an increase in the number of nonnative plant species that will 
likely invade from the road.
    A recent visit to the Glenwood site confirmed that the nonnative 
plant Cytisus scoparius (Scotch broom) has invaded to within a few feet 
of one of the colonies of Polygonum hickmanii in the last few years 
(Carole Kelley,

[[Page 67338]]

Friends of Scotts Valley, per. comm. 1998). If not controlled, this 
invasive plant could quickly eliminate habitat for the P. hickmanii. 
The California Department of Food and Agriculture has declared Cytisus 
scoparius and Cytisus monspessulanus (French broom) pest species, which 
in some places forms impenetrable thickets that displace native 
vegetation and lower habitat value for wildlife (Habitat Restoration 
Group, no date).
    A housing development proposed for the Polo Ranch site includes 74 
housing units clustered on 7.3 of 47.0 ha (18 of 116 ac), with the 
remaining 38 ha (95 acres) kept as open space (City of Scotts Valley 
1998). The development, as currently proposed, places houses and 
roadways within 18 m (60 ft) or closer to five out of six colonies of 
Polygonum hickmanii. Moreover, not only will the development then 
separate the colonies from each other, three of the six colonies will 
be isolated on all sides either by existing or proposed dwellings and 
    Alterations of habitat for Polygonum hickmanii that are likely to 
occur as a result of the Polo Ranch development are changes in surface 
hydrologic conditions due to the grading of roads and lots; soil 
compaction and disturbance by humans, pets, and bicycle traffic; 
inadvertent (i.e., aerial drift) and intentional application of 
herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers on roadsides and yards; 
inadvertent introduction of nonnative species (both weedy and 
ornamental), and dumping of yard wastes. Examples of alteration of 
habitat that have occurred on grasslands north of the backyards of 
existing housing along Navarra Drive (along the south edge of the Polo 
Ranch property) include gates and pathways leading from backyards onto 
the grassland, ivy creeping over fences and onto the grassland, oaks 
(Quercus sp.) planted within the grassland, and shade created by 
planted backyard trees (K. Lyons, pers. comm. 1998).
    Although two of the projects (high school and recycled water 
distribution system) include plans for conservation of Polygonum 
hickmanii through development-related mitigation, and the third project 
(Polo Ranch) would be expected to do so as well, the successful 
implementation of these mitigation plans has not been demonstrated. In 
particular, the size and characteristics of preserve areas, open 
spaces, and management actions prescribed through the environmental 
review process (see Factor D) are unlikely to be biologically adequate 
to meet the goal of long-term conservation of P. hickmanii and its 
habitat. In addition, since P. hickmanii colonies will be in preserves 
or open spaces that are small in area, support small numbers of 
individuals, whose habitat is degraded, or that continue to receive 
secondary effects of adjacent human activities, they become more 
vulnerable to extirpation from naturally occurring events (see Factor 
    All habitat for Polygonum hickmanii is also threatened in general 
by the encroachment of nonnative grasses from the surrounding 
grasslands. Although several species of nonnative grass (e.g., Vulpia 
myuros) grow within the wildflower fields, these patches for the most 
part do not support the abundant growth of nonnative grasses (Bromus 
sp.) that occur on the adjacent, more mesic grassland habitat. These 
nonnative grasses on the mesic grasslands do not compete with P. 
hickmanii in the classic sense (competition for light, water, 
nutrients). However, the tall culms (stems) of nonnative grasses can 
physically drape over patches of wildflower field habitat, particularly 
the smaller patches, and deposit a mat of litter (thatch) that 
physically prohibits the species within the wildflower field from 
appearing. Because nonnative grasses and herbs produce more biomass 
than their native counterparts, they also produce more litter. Although 
decomposition rates for nonnative species are likely no slower than 
those of native species, their faster rate of biomass production 
results in a greater accumulation of litter. Other cases of native 
species being overtaken by litter accumulation produced by nonnatives 
have been noted in desert ecosystems (Jayne Belknap, Biological 
Resources Division, pers. comm. 1998) and on the California Channel 
Islands (Rob Klinger, The Nature Conservancy, pers. comm. 1998).
    B. Overutilization for commercial, recreational, scientific, or 
educational purposes. Overutilization or vandalism are not known to be 
threats to this species.
    C. Disease or predation. We found no evidence that disease is a 
factor affecting this species. Predation by cattle, livestock, or other 
wildlife species is not known to occur.
    D. The inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms. Polygonum 
hickmanii currently receives no protection under Federal law, and it is 
not currently listed by the State of California.
    Chorizanthe robusta var. hartwegiana, an endangered species, occurs 
within the same wildflower field habitat as Polygonum hickmanii. 
Although C. r. var. hartwegiana is listed, it remains vulnerable to all 
the same threats that face P. hickmanii. Therefore, the association of 
P. hickmanii with the C. r. var. hartwegiana in the same wildlflower 
field habitat confers little regulatory protection on the P. hickmanii. 
However, there may be some benefit to P. hickmanii through the 
California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) process described below.
    The CEQA requires a full disclosure of the potential environmental 
impacts of proposed projects. The lead agency is the public agency with 
primary authority or jurisdiction over the project, and is responsible 
for conducting a review of the project and consulting with other 
agencies concerned with the resources affected by the project. Section 
15065 of the CEQA Guidelines requires a finding of significance if a 
project potentially ``reduce(s) the number or restrict(s) the range of 
a rare or endangered plant or animal.'' Species eligible for State 
listing as threatened or endangered, but not listed, are given the same 
protection as those species officially listed by State or Federal 
governments. The Rare Plant Scientific Advisory Committee for the 
California Native Plant Society has determined that Polygonum hickmanii 
meets the criteria for being included on CNPS' ``List 1B.'' The plants 
on List 1B meet the definitions of sec. 1901, chapter 10 of the 
California Department of Fish and Game Code, and are therefore eligible 
for State listing. It is mandatory that plants on List 1B be fully 
considered during preparation of environmental documents relating to 
CEQA. Once significant effects are identified, the lead agency may 
require mitigation for effects through changes in the project or 
alternatively, the lead agency may decide that overriding 
considerations make mitigation infeasible. In the latter case, projects 
may be approved that cause significant environmental damage, such as 
destruction of listed species. Therefore, the protection of listed 
species through CEQA depends upon the discretion of the lead agency 
    CEQA approval for the construction of the Polo Ranch development 
falls under the purview of the City of Scotts Valley. However, the 
Scotts Valley Unified School District was the lead CEQA agency for 
approval of the Glenwood High School project, while the Scotts Valley 
Water District acted as the lead CEQA agency for approval of the 
recycled water distribution project. With at least three local agencies 
separately approving development proposals, a consistent, appropriate 
approach to managing such small preserves and adequately mitigating 
project impacts may be very difficult to develop and maintain.

[[Page 67339]]

    Inclusion of mitigation measures in a project approved through the 
CEQA process does not guarantee that such measures are implemented. The 
recycled water distribution project approved by the Scotts Valley Water 
District included measures to avoid and mitigate impacts to sensitive 
resources, including those for Polygonum hickmanii and Chorizanthe 
robusta var. hartwegii. However, grading for this project was initiated 
without implementing those measures, which resulted in a much narrower 
buffer zone left between the plant populations and the grading activity 
(Carl Wilcox, California Department of Fish and Game, in litt. 1999).
    Certain local agencies are exempt from city and county regulations 
in accordance with chapter 1, paragraphs 53094 and 53096 of the State 
of California regulations on planning, zoning, and development laws 
(Governor's Office of Planning and Research 1996). In the case of the 
High School project, the Scotts Valley Unified School District is 
exempt from local permitting requirements; therefore, no permits or 
approvals were required from the City of Scotts Valley. In the case of 
the recycled water distribution project, the Scotts Valley Water 
District is similarly exempted; therefore, no permits or approvals are 
required from either the City of Scotts Valley or the County of Santa 
Cruz. In July 1999, the Water District proceeded with road and tank pad 
grading for this project. This activity was initiated without 
fulfilling mitigation measures that called for sensitive areas to be 
flagged and fenced ahead of time, and resulted in grading that went 
beyond the scope of work for the project. Although the County of Santa 
Cruz notified the Water District that the additional grading was not 
exempted from applicable regulations, the only consequence is that the 
county has requested that the damaged areas are satisfactorily restored 
(Alvin James, County of Santa Cruz, in litt. 1999).
    The establishment and implementation of a management plan for the 
preserve at the High School site does not provide for enforcement 
authority to maintain the physical integrity of the preserve. Few 
regulatory mechanisms are available to assist in protection of the high 
school preserve. State law addressing trespass is found at California 
Penal Code Section 554 and 555 (California State Legislature 2000). To 
date, however, these regulations have not been enforced in cases of 
trespass at the preserve (Carole Kelley, Friends of Scotts Valley, 
pers. comm. 1999).
    E. Other natural or manmade factors affecting its continued 
existence. The design of preserves and open spaces related to project 
mitigation is insufficient to provide for the long-term conservation of 
Polygonum hickmanii and other sensitive species that occur in the 
wildflower fields in Scotts Valley. Additionally, the threat of random 
extinction is increased in small populations of limited distribution.
    Inadequate preserve design. The need for adequate preserve design 
has been discussed by many biologists (Jensen 1987; Shafer 1995; 
Rathcke and Jules 1993; Kelly and Rotenberry 1993). To increase the 
certainty that a species will persist over a given interval of time, 
adequate habitat needs to be protected and land uses adjacent to the 
preserve need to be compatible with maintaining the integrity of the 
preserve. Habitat is not restricted solely to the area actually 
occupied by the species. It must include an area that is large enough 
to maintain the ecological functions upon which the species depends, 
and have a ratio of edge to total area that minimizes fragmentation and 
edge effects.
    Failure to protect sufficient habitat results in the eventual 
decline of the target species. Small preserves adjacent to urban areas 
have additional stress placed on them due to the need to manage a host 
of human-caused impacts. The increased stress urban wildland areas 
receive has been documented by many authors (Keeley 1983). Although 
little work has focused on the effects of habitat alteration and 
fragmentation on native grassland habitat in California, the effects 
would likely be similar to those documented for other native California 
habitats. Clark et al. (1998) discussed management problems encountered 
by small vernal pool preserves surrounded by an urban park and 
residential development in the Sacramento area, and they identified the 
following threats to the habitat--off-road motorized vehicle, foot, 
horse, and bicycle traffic; plant and animal collection; herbicides; 
changes in hydrology; garbage; invasive exotic plants; feral and 
domestic animals; vegetation management for fire control; and 
    We previously listed serpentine-endemic species in the San 
Francisco Bay area, in part, due to the impacts these taxa were 
subjected to in urban wildland areas (Service 1995; 60 FR 6671). For 
example, Cordylanthus tenuis ssp. capillaris (Pennell's bird's-beak) is 
threatened with mowing and spraying along roadsides, illegal dumping of 
household trash, and disturbance that facilitates the invasion of 
nonnative species (60 FR 6671). Calochortus tiburonensis (Tiburon 
mariposa lily) is threatened by bicycle, motorbike, and pedestrian 
traffic even though it occurs within a fenced preserve area; and 
Cirsium fontinale var. fontinale (Fountain thistle) is threatened by 
dumping of garden debris from households on a ridge above the plants 
(60 FR 6671). In the case of Polygonum hickmanii at the School District 
Preserve, the site has remained unfenced and unsigned, and has been 
subject to bicycle traffic, heavy equipment traffic, and served as a 
repository for yard waste (C. Kelley, in litt. 1999). In addition, a 
management plan for the preserve has not yet been completed.
    Pentachaeta lyonii (Lyon's pentachaeta) is an endangered plant 
species that is restricted to less than 10 sites in western Los Angeles 
and eastern Ventura County. It is similar to Polygonum hickmanii in 
that its habitat consists of thin-soiled patches within a larger 
grassland community that has deeper soils. In the early 1990s, small 
patches of Pentachaeta lyonii were set aside as preserves as mitigation 
for a housing development and golf course in Westlake Village. At hole 
10 on the golf course, a 1,394 square-meter (1,500 square-foot) area 
was set aside for a small population of the pentachaeta; however, the 
population dwindled over the next six years and finally disappeared 
(Carl Wishner, Envicom, pers. comm. 1998). Attempts to transplant bare 
root seedlings into the site resulted in the reappearance of the 
species the following year, but with numbers again dwindling in 
subsequent years. Habitat for the plant has been rendered unsuitable 
for several reasons including overspray from the sprinkler system that 
increased soil moisture, which in turn promoted the growth of weedy 
nonnative herbs and grasses that compete with the pentachaeta. 
Overspray also resulted in the mildew of pentachaeta flower heads, 
which then did not produce seed. Adjacent landscaped areas provide 
cover that harbors populations of rabbits, birds, snails and insects 
that were not previously present. In combination, these animals have 
consumed much of the vegetation along a 1.5 to 2.4 m (5 to 8 ft) wide 
swath of vegetation, including pentachaeta, on the perimeter of the 
preserve area.
    Alberts et al. (1993) documented the effects of habitat 
fragmentation on coastal scrub in southern California. Surveys of 
native and introduced plant species conducted in 25 patches of coastal 
scrub found that plant species richness and the ratio of native species 
to nonnative species was correlated

[[Page 67340]]

with several variables--larger and more recently isolated patches 
supported more species; fragments with longer perimeters contained more 
weed species; and older fragments and those with artificially 
supplemented water sources supported higher numbers of escaped 
ornamentals. Human disturbance, including clearing of vegetation, 
addition of nonnatural water supplies, and disruption of fire regimes, 
has most likely contributed to the loss of native species and 
subsequent invasion of nonnative species into the patches.
    Habitat fragmentation also affects plant-pollinator interactions in 
a number of ways. The abundance of specific pollinators may decline due 
to the elimination of nesting sites, decreases in food source plants 
due to changes in composition of the plant community, increases in 
competition from nonnative pollinators, and increases in the exposure 
to pesticides (Rathcke and Jules 1993; Jennersten 1988; Kearns and 
Inouye 1997). In plant species that are obligate outcrossers (those 
that require pollinators to effect seed development), reduced 
pollinator availability can result in limited seed production. Even if 
a plant species is not an obligate outcrosser, genetic variability 
within the plant population can be reduced with potentially deleterious 
long-term consequences (see discussion below on random extinction).
    In the case of Polygonum hickmanii, ecological processes that would 
be important to maintain within preserve areas include, but are not 
limited to, the integrity of edaphic (soil) conditions, hydrologic 
processes (surface flows), the associated ``wildflower field'' plant 
community, plant-pollinator interactions, and seed dispersal 
mechanisms. Maintaining such processes will be severely compromised by 
the small size of the areas being set aside as preserves or open 
spaces, the extent of edge subject to external influences, and the 
particular kinds of adjacent land use to which the preserves will be 
subject. Threats resulting from alteration of habitat due to adjacent 
changes in land use (discussed in Factor A) are exacerbated by the 
small size of the preserves and the proximity of nearly all of the 
colonies to the edges of the preserves or open spaces, or to roads. 
Distances of less than 24 m (80 ft) are not considered to be highly 
effective at buffering from chemical pollutants (e.g., herbicides, 
pesticides, and other contaminants) (Conservation Biology Institute 
2000). Depending on site configuration or circumstances, buffers of up 
to 91 m (300 ft) may not be adequate to provide sufficient buffering 
from invasive animals and increased fire frequency (Conservation 
Biology Institute 2000) .
    Random extinction. Species with few populations and individuals are 
vulnerable to the threat of naturally occurring events, causing 
extinction through mechanisms operating either at the genetic level, 
the population level, or at the landscape level. The loss of genetic 
diversity may decrease a species' ability to persist within the 
environment, often manifested as a decrease in reproductive success. At 
the population level, species with few populations or individuals may 
be subject to forces that affect their ability to complete their life 
cycles successfully. For example, the loss of pollinators may reduce 
successful seed set, or if the host plant is at least partially self-
compatible, may reduce the degree of genetic variability within 
species. At the landscape level, random natural events, such as storms, 
drought, or fire could destroy a significant percentage of a species' 
individuals or entire populations. The restriction of colonies to small 
sites increases their risk of extinction from such naturally occurring 
    The genetic characteristics of Polygonum hickmanii have not been 
investigated; therefore, the degree to which these characteristics 
contribute to the likelihood of P. hickmanii being vulnerable to 
extinction for these reasons is unknown. However, random events 
operating at the population and landscape levels clearly have the 
potential for increasing the chance of extinction for P. hickmanii.
    We have carefully assessed the best scientific and commercial 
information available regarding the past, present, and future threats 
faced by this taxon in determining to propose this rule. Based on this 
evaluation, the appropriate action is to propose listing Polygonum 
hickmanii (Scotts Valley polygonum) as endangered. The species is 
threatened with extinction due to habitat alteration resulting 
primarily from urban development, inadequate preserve design, and 
vulnerability to naturally occurring events due to low numbers of 
individuals and occupied acreage of the entire taxon. All of the 
colonies are on private lands. Although conservation efforts have been 
prescribed as part of mitigation for two of the three projects (high 
school and recycled water distribution project), and are expected to be 
proposed for the third project (Polo Ranch development), the small 
extent of occupied habitat, small colony sizes, and imminent threats 
lessen the chance that such efforts will lead to secure, self-
sustaining colonies at these sites.

Critical Habitat

    Critical habitat is defined in section 3 of the Act as the specific 
areas within the geographic area occupied by a species, at the time it 
is listed in accordance with the Act, on which are found those physical 
or biological features essential to the conservation of the species, 
and that may require special management consideration or protection, 
and specific areas outside the geographic area occupied by a species at 
the time it is listed, upon determination that such areas are essential 
for the conservation of the species. ``Conservation'' means the use of 
all methods and procedures that are necessary to bring an endangered 
species or a threatened species to the point at which listing under Act 
is no longer necessary.
    Critical habitat designation, by definition, directly affects only 
Federal agency actions through consultation under section 7(a)(2) of 
the Act. Section 7(a)(2) requires Federal agencies to ensure that 
activities they authorize, fund, or carry out are not likely to 
jeopardize the continued existence of a listed species or destroy or 
adversely modify its critical habitat.
    Section 4(a)(3) of the Act, as amended, and implementing 
regulations (50 CFR 424.12) require that, to the maximum extent prudent 
and determinable, we designate critical habitat at the time the species 
is determined to be endangered or threatened. Our regulations (50 CFR 
424.12(a)(1)) state that the designation of critical habitat is not 
prudent when one or both of the following situations exist--(1) the 
species is threatened by taking or other human activity, and 
identification of critical habitat can be expected to increase the 
degree of threat to the species, or (2) such designation of critical 
habitat would not be beneficial to the species.
    Our Final Listing Priority Guidance for FY 2000 (64 FR 57114) 
states that the processing of critical habitat determinations (prudency 
and determinability decisions) and proposed or final designations of 
critical habitat will no longer be subject to prioritization under the 
Listing Priority Guidance. Critical habitat determinations, which were 
previously included in final listing rules published in the Federal 
Register, may now be processed separately, in which case stand-alone 
critical habitat determinations will be published as notices in the 
Federal Register.

[[Page 67341]]

    We believe that critical habitat is prudent for Polygonum 
hickmanii. In the last few years, a series of court decisions have 
overturned Service determinations regarding a variety of species that 
designation of critical habitat would not be prudent (e.g., Natural 
Resources Defense Council v. U.S. Department of the Interior, 113 F. 3d 
1121 (9th Cir. 1997); Conservation Council for Hawaii v. Babbitt, 2 F. 
Supp. 2d 1280 (D. Hawaii 1998)). Based on the standards applied in 
those judicial opinions, we believe that designation of critical 
habitat would be prudent for P. hickmanii.
    Due to the small number of populations, Polygonum hickmanii is 
vulnerable to unrestricted collection, vandalism, or other disturbance. 
We are concerned that these threats might be exacerbated by the 
publication of critical habitat maps and further dissemination of 
locational information. However, at this time we do not have specific 
evidence of vandalism, collection, or trade of P. hickmanii or any 
similarly situated species. Consequently, consistent with applicable 
regulations (50 CFR 424.12(a)(1)(i)) and recent case law, we do not 
expect that the identification of critical habitat will increase the 
degree of threat to this species of taking or other human activity.
    In the absence of a finding that critical habitat would increase 
threats to a species, if there are any benefits to critical habitat 
designation, then a prudent finding is warranted. In the case of this 
species, there may be some benefits to designation of critical habitat. 
The primary regulatory effect of critical habitat is the section 7 
requirement that Federal agencies refrain from taking any action that 
destroys or adversely modifies critical habitat. While a critical 
habitat designation for habitat currently occupied by this species 
would not be likely to change the section 7 consultation outcome 
because an action that destroys or adversely modifies such critical 
habitat would also be likely to result in jeopardy to the species, 
there may be instances where section 7 consultation would be triggered 
only if critical habitat is designated. Examples could include 
unoccupied habitat or occupied habitat that may become unoccupied in 
the future. There may also be some educational or informational 
benefits to designating critical habitat. Therefore, we propose that 
critical habitat is prudent for Polygonum hickmanii.
    We are deferring the proposed critical habitat designation for 
Polygonum hickmanii until a later date. The reason for this is that P. 
hickmanii occurs in the same general areas as Chorizanthe robusta var. 
hartwegii. We intend to concurrently propose critical habitat for both 
of these species. Also, this deferral will allow us to concentrate our 
limited resources on higher priority critical habitat and other listing 
actions, while allowing us to put in place protections needed for the 
conservation of P. hickmanii without further delay. We will also make 
the final critical habitat determination separately from the final 
listing determination for P. hickmanii.

Available Conservation Measures

    Conservation measures provided to species listed as endangered or 
threatened under the Act include recognition, recovery actions, 
requirements for Federal protection, and prohibitions against certain 
activities. Recognition through listing encourages and results in 
public awareness and conservation actions by Federal, State, and local 
and private agencies, groups, and individuals. The Act provides for 
possible land acquisition and cooperation with the States, and requires 
that we carry out recovery actions for all listed species. Together 
with our partners, we would initiate such actions following listing. 
The protection required of Federal agencies and the prohibitions 
against certain activities involving listed plants are discussed, in 
part, below.
    Section 7(a) of the Act requires Federal agencies to evaluate their 
actions with respect to any species that is proposed or listed as 
endangered or threatened, and with respect to its critical habitat, if 
any is being designated. Regulations implementing this Interagency 
Cooperation provision of the Act are codified at 50 CFR part 402. 
Section 7(a)(4) requires Federal agencies to confer with us on any 
action that is likely to jeopardize the continued existence of a 
proposed species or result in destruction or adverse modification of 
proposed critical habitat. If a species is listed subsequently, section 
7(a)(2) requires Federal agencies to ensure that activities they 
authorize, fund, or carry out are not likely to jeopardize the 
continued existence of the species or to destroy or adversely modify 
its critical habitat, if any has been designated. If a Federal action 
may affect a listed species or its critical habitat, the responsible 
Federal agency must enter into formal consultation with us.
    Activities on private lands requiring a permit from a Federal 
agency, such as a permit from the Army Corps of Engineers under section 
404 of the Clean Water Act, would be subject to the section 7 
consultation process. Federal actions not affecting the species, as 
well as actions on non-Federal lands that are not federally funded or 
permitted would not require section 7 consultation.
    Listing of this plant would authorize development of a recovery 
plan for it. However, in the case of Polygonum hickmanii, we included 
conservation recommendations for this species in a multi-species 
recovery plan we published, which also addressed recovery actions for 
two listed insects and three listed plants (including the endangered 
Chorizanthe robusta var. hartwegii that occurs with P. hickmanii) in 
the Santa Cruz Mountains (Service 1998). Should P. hickmanii become 
listed, we intend that the conservation recommendations included in 
this recovery plan will, in effect, become the recovery plan for this 
species. This plan identifies both State and Federal efforts for 
conservation of the plant and establishes a framework for agencies to 
coordinate activities and cooperate with each other in conservation 
efforts. The plan sets recovery priorities and describes site-specific 
management actions necessary to achieve conservation and survival of 
the plant. Additionally, pursuant to section 6 of the Act, we would be 
able to grant funds to the State of California for management actions 
promoting the protection and recovery of the species.
    The Act and its implementing regulations set forth a series of 
general prohibitions and exceptions that apply to all endangered 
plants. All prohibitions of section 9(a)(2) of the Act, implemented by 
50 CFR 17.61 for endangered plants, would apply. These prohibitions, in 
part, make it illegal for any person subject to the jurisdiction of the 
United States to import or export, transport in interstate or foreign 
commerce in the course of a commercial activity, sell or offer for sale 
in interstate or foreign commerce, or remove the species from areas 
under Federal jurisdiction. In addition, for plants listed as 
endangered, the Act prohibits the malicious damage or destruction in 
areas under Federal jurisdiction and the removal, cutting, digging up, 
damaging, or destroying of such endangered plants in knowing violation 
of any State law or regulation, or in the course of any violation of a 
State criminal trespass law. Certain exceptions to the prohibitions 
apply to our agents and State conservation agencies.
    In accordance with our policy, published in the Federal Register on 
July 1, 1994 (59 FR 34272), at the time a species is listed we identify 
to the maximum extent practicable those activities that would or would 

[[Page 67342]]

constitute a violation of section 9 of the Act. The intent of this 
policy is to increase public awareness of the effect of the listing on 
proposed and ongoing activities within a species' range. Collection, 
damage, or destruction of endangered plants on Federal lands is 
prohibited, although in appropriate cases, a Federal endangered species 
permit may be issued to allow for collection. However, Polygonum 
hickmanii is not presently known to occur on Federal land. Removal, 
cutting, digging up, damaging or destroying endangered plants on non-
Federal lands also constitutes a violation of section 9 of the Act if 
conducted in knowing violation of State law or regulations, including 
State criminal trespass law.
    Questions regarding whether specific activities will constitute a 
violation of section 9 should be addressed to the Field Supervisor, 
Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office (see ADDRESSES section).
    The Act and 50 CFR 17.62 and 17.63 also provide for the issuance of 
permits to carry out otherwise prohibited activities involving 
endangered plants under certain circumstances. Such permits are 
available for scientific purposes and to enhance the propagation or 
survival of the species. Requests for copies of the regulations 
regarding listed species and inquiries about prohibitions and permits 
may be addressed to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ecological 
Services, Permits Branch, 911 N.E. 11th Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97232-
4181 (telephone 503/231-2063; facsimile 503/231-6243).

Public Comments Solicited

    We intend that any final action resulting from this proposal will 
be as accurate and as effective as possible. Therefore, we request 
comments or suggestions from the public, other concerned governmental 
agencies, the scientific community, industry, or any other interested 
party concerning this proposed rule. Comments particularly are sought 
    (1) Biological, commercial trade, or other relevant data concerning 
any threat (or lack thereof) to Polygonum hickmanii;
    (2) The location of any additional populations of Polygonum 
hickmanii and the reasons why any habitat of this species should or 
should not be determined to be critical habitat pursuant to section 4 
of the Act;
    (3) Additional information concerning the range, distribution, and 
population size of this species; and
    (4) Current or planned activities in the subject area and their 
possible impacts on Polygonum hickmanii.
    In making a final decision on this proposal, we will take into 
consideration the comments and any additional information we receive. 
Such communications may lead to a final regulation that differs from 
this proposal.
    In accordance with our policy published on July 1, 1994 (59 FR 
34270), we will solicit the expert opinions of three appropriate and 
independent specialists regarding this proposed rule. The purpose of 
such review is to ensure listing decisions are based on scientifically 
sound data, assumptions, and analyses. We will send these peer 
reviewers copies of this proposed rule immediately following 
publication in the Federal Register. We will invite these peer 
reviewers to comment, during the public comment period, on the specific 
assumptions and conclusions regarding the proposed listing.
    We will consider all comments and information received during the 
60-day comment period on this proposed rule during preparation of a 
final rulemaking. Accordingly, the final determination may differ from 
this proposal.
    Our practice is to make comments, including names and home 
addresses of respondents, available for public review during regular 
business hours. Individual respondents may request that we withhold 
their home address from the rulemaking record, which we will honor to 
the extent allowable by law. There also may be circumstances in which 
we would withhold from the rulemaking record a respondent's identity, 
as allowable by law. If you wish us to withhold your name and/or 
address, you must state this prominently at the beginning of your 
comment. However, we will not consider anonymous comments. We will make 
all submissions from organizations or businesses, and from individuals 
identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations 
or businesses, available for public inspection in their entirety. 
Comments and materials received will be available for public 
inspection, by appointment, during normal business hours at the above 
    If you would like to submit comments by e-mail (see ADDRESSES 
section), please submit e-mail comments as an ASCII file and avoid the 
use of special characters and any form of encryption. Please also 
include ``Attn: RIN 1018-AH70'' and your name and return address in 
your e-mail message. If you do not receive a confirmation from the 
system that we have received your e-mail message, contact us directly 
by calling our Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office at phone number 805/

Public Hearings

    The Act provides for one or more public hearing on this proposal, 
if requested. Requests must be received within 45 days of the date of 
publication of the proposal in the Federal Register. Such requests must 
be made in writing and be addressed to the Field Supervisor (see 
ADDRESSES section).

Clarity of the Rule

    Executive Order 12866 requires each agency to write regulations/
notices that are easy to understand. We invite your comments on how to 
make this proposed rule easier to understand, including answers to 
questions such as the following--(1) Are the requirements in the 
proposed rule clearly stated? (2) Does the proposed rule contain 
technical jargon that interferes with the clarity? (3) Does the format 
of the proposed rule (grouping and order of the sections, use of 
headings, paragraphing, etc.) aid or reduce its clarity? (4) Is the 
description of the notice in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of 
the preamble helpful in understanding the proposed rule? What else 
could we do to make this proposed rule easier to understand?
    Send a copy of any comments that concern how we could make this 
rule easier to understand to the office identified in the ADDRESSES 
section at the beginning of this document.

National Environmental Policy Act

    We have determined that an Environmental Assessment and 
Environmental Impact Statement, as defined under the authority of the 
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, need not be prepared in 
connection with regulations adopted pursuant to section 4(a) of the 
Act. We published a notice outlining our reasons for this determination 
in the Federal Register on October 25, 1983 (48 FR 49244).

Required Determinations

    This proposed rule does not contain any new or revised information 
collection requirements for which Office of Management and Budget (OMB) 
approval under the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq., is 
required. An information collection related to the rule pertaining to 
permits for endangered and threatened species has OMB approval and is 
assigned clearance number 1018-0094. For additional information 
concerning permits and associated requirements for endangered plants, 
see 50 CFR 17.62

[[Page 67343]]

and 17.63. We may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required 
to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a 
currently valid OMB control number.

References Cited

    A complete list of all references cited herein, as well as others, 
is available upon request from the Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office 
(see ADDRESSES section).


    The primary author of this proposed rule is Constance Rutherford 
(see ADDRESSES section).

List of Subjects in 50 CFR part 17

    Endangered and threatened species, Exports, Imports, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements, Transportation.

Proposed Regulation Promulgation

    Accordingly, we propose to amend part 17, subchapter B of chapter 
I, title 50 of the Code of Federal Regulations, as set forth below:


    1. The authority citation for part 17 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1361-1407; 16 U.S.C. 1531-1544; 16 U.S.C. 
4201-4245; Pub. L. 99-625, 100 Stat. 3500, unless otherwise noted.

    2. Section 17.12(h) is amended by adding the following, in 
alphabetical order under FLOWERING PLANTS, to the List of Endangered 
and Threatened Plants to read as follows:

Sec. 17.12  Endangered and threatened plants.

* * * * *
    (h) * * *

--------------------------------------------------------    Historic range           Family            Status      When listed    Critical     Special
         Scientific name                Common name                                                                               habitat       rules
         Flowering Plants

                   *                  *                  *                  *                  *                  *                  *
Polygonum hickmanii..............  Scotts Valley         U.S.A. (CA)........  Polygonaceae.......  E               ...........           NA           NA

                   *                  *                  *                  *                  *                  *                  *

    Dated: October 17, 2000.
Jamie Rappaport Clark,
Director, Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 00-28698 Filed 11-8-00; 8:45 am]