[Federal Register: June 7, 2001 (Volume 66, Number 110)]
[Page 30745-30746]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Availability of an Environmental Action Statement and Receipt of 
an Application for a Permit To Enhance the Survival of the Oregon Chub 
in Lane County, OR Under a Safe Harbor Agreement

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.


SUMMARY: This notice advises the public that Robert Russell (Applicant) 
has applied to the Fish and Wildlife Service (we, the Service) for an 
enhancement of survival permit pursuant to section 10(a)(1)(A) of the 
Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act) for the Oregon Chub 
(Oregonichtys crameri) in Lane County, Oregon. This permit application 
includes a proposed Safe Harbor Agreement (Agreement) between the 
Applicant and the Service. The proposed permit and Agreement would 
become effective upon initialization of the Agreement and remain in 
effect for 30 years. The Service has made a preliminary determination 
that the proposed Agreement and permit application are eligible for 
categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act of 
1969 (NEPA). We explain the basis for this determination in an 
Environmental Action Statement, which also is available for public 
    We announce the opening of a 30-day comment period to receive 
comments from the public on the Applicant's enhancement of survival 
permit application, the accompanying proposed Agreement, and 
Environmental Action Statement.
    The Agreement fully describes the proposed project, management 
actions, and the conservation benefits that will be gained for Oregon 
chub. The management actions and conservation benefits are also 
described in the Background section below.

DATES: Written comments must be received by July 9, 2001.

ADDRESSES: Comments should be addressed to the Manager, Fish and 
Wildlife Service, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Office, fax number (503) 
231-6195 (see Public Review and Comment section below).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Amy Horstman, Fish and Wildlife 
Service, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Office, telephone (503) 231-6179.



    Under a Safe Harbor Agreement, participating property owners 
voluntarily undertake management activities on their property to 
enhance, restore, or maintain habitat benefitting species listed under 
the Act. Safe Harbor Agreements encourage private and other non-Federal 
property owners to implement conservation efforts for listed species by 
assuring property owners that they will not be subjected to increased 
property use restrictions if their efforts attract listed species to 
their property or increase the numbers or distribution of listed 
species already on their property. Application requirements and 
issuance criteria for enhancement of survival permits through Safe 
Harbor Agreements are found in 50 CFR 17.22(c).
    We have worked with the Applicant to develop the proposed Agreement 
for the conservation of Oregon chub within his 800 square meter (0.2 
acre) artificial pond in Lane County, Oregon. The area is currently not 
occupied by Oregon chub or any other Federal or State listed species. 
Under the proposed Agreement, the Applicant will: (1) Allow 
translocation of Oregon chub to the pond, (2) allow the Service and 
Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife access to the pond for 
translocation and habitat and chub population monitoring, (3) provide 
the Service with written notice of intent to modify the pond or 
introduce competing fish species, (4) work cooperatively with the 
Service on other issues necessary to further the purposes of the 
    Threats to the Oregon chub include: dam construction, 
channelization, diking, wetland fill, and loss of riparian vegetation 
which have changed flooding, streamflow, and temperature patterns of 
the watershed and subsequent loss of backwater habitats used by Oregon 
chub (Markle et al. 1991). Degradation of habitat has also occurred, 
primarily due to sedimentation from construction activities, logging, 
alterations of water flow, and other causes. Introductions of exotic 
game fish (e.g., bass, crappie, mosquito fish) may have contributed to 
the decline of existing Oregon chub populations and may reduce the 
potential for Oregon chub to recolonize suitable habitats through 
increased competition for resources, predation, and introduction of 
parasites and disease (Markle and Pearsons 1990). The proximity of many 
populations to rail, highway, and power transmission corridors, and 
state park campgrounds poses the threat of chemical spills, runoff or 
spill of agricultural or right-of-

[[Page 30746]]

way maintenance chemicals, and overflow from campground toilets. This 
Agreement provides a net conservation benefit to Oregon chub by 
creating a protected refugia for this segment of the Oregon chub 
population and thereby reducing risks of complete loss of the donor 
population and thus loss of any unique genetic material. The Agreement 
is expected to contribute to recovery of Oregon chub by reducing 
threats and expanding Oregon chub populations. Recovery of the species 
would be further enhanced by increasing the reproductive viability of 
the populations.
    Under the Agreement, consistent with the Service's Safe Harbor 
Policy, published in the Federal Register on June 17, 1999 (64 FR 
32717), the Service would issue a permit to the Applicant authorizing 
incidental take of Oregon chub as a result of activities outside of the 
15-meter (50-foot) buffer zone around the perimeter of the pond. These 
activities include: diversion of water for irrigation or other 
purposes, grazing of livestock upslope of the pond, stocking of fish or 
amphibian species, logging trees, removal of vegetation surrounding the 
pond area, use of herbicide or pesticide, and any earthmoving 
activities upslope of the pond. We expect that the maximum level of 
incidental take authorized under the proposed Agreement will never be 
    We are providing this notice pursuant to section 10(c) of the Act 
and pursuant to implementing regulations for NEPA (40 CFR 1506.6). We 
will evaluate this permit application, associated documents, and 
comments submitted thereon to determine whether the permit application 
meets the requirements of section 10(a) of the Act and NEPA 
regulations. If, upon completion of the 30-day comment period, we 
determine that the requirements are met, we will sign the proposed 
Agreement and issue an enhancement of survival permit under section 
10(a)(1)(A) of the Act to the Applicant for take of Oregon chub 
incidental to otherwise lawful activities in accordance with the terms 
of the Agreement.

Public Review and Comments

    Individuals wishing copies of the permit application, the 
Environmental Action Statement, or copies of the full text of the 
Agreement, including a map of the proposed permit area, references, and 
legal descriptions of the proposed permit area, should contact the 
office and personnel listed in the ADDRESSES section above.
    If you wish to comment on the permit application, the Environmental 
Action Statement, or the Agreement, you may submit your comments to the 
address listed in the ADDRESSES section of this document. Comments and 
materials received, including names and addresses of respondents, will 
be available for public review, by appointment, during normal business 
hours at the address in the ADDRESSES section above and will become 
part of the public record, pursuant to section 10(c) of the Act.

    Dated: May 24, 2001.
Rowan W. Gould,
Acting Regional Director, Region 1, Portland, Oregon.
[FR Doc. 01-14323 Filed 6-6-01; 8:45 am]