[Federal Register: January 16, 2003 (Volume 68, Number 11)]
[Page 2350-2351]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Notice of Availability of the Draft Recovery Plan for the Zapata 
Bladderpod (Lesquerella thamnophila) for Review and Comment

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of document availability.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announces the 
availability for public review of the draft Recovery Plan for the 
Zapata bladderpod (Lesquerella thamnophila). Six populations are still 
known to exist in varying numbers. The Service solicits review and 
comment from the public on this draft plan.

DATES: The comment period for this draft Recovery Plan closes on 
February 18, 2003. Comments on the draft Recovery Plan must be received 
by the closing date.

ADDRESSES: Persons wishing to review the draft Recovery Plan can obtain 
a copy from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Corpus Christi 
Ecological Services Field Office, c/o TAMUCC, Box 338, 6300 Ocean 
Drive, Corpus Christi, Texas, 78412. If you wish to comment, you may 
submit your comments and materials concerning this draft Recovery Plan 
to the Field Supervisor at the address above.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Loretta Pressly, Corpus Christi 
Ecological Services Field Office, at the above address; telephone (361) 
994-9005, facsimile (361) 994-8262.



    The Zapata bladderpod (Lesquerella thamnophila), a plant of the 
Brassicaceae Family, is listed as endangered with critical habitat. 
Historically, 10 populations of the plants have been located and 
described. Currently, six of those 10 populations remain; three of the 
populations are located in Starr County, and three in Zapata County. 
This species is threatened by increasing urban development, highway 
construction, increased oil and gas activities, alteration and 
conversion of native plant communities to improved pastures, 
overgrazing, and vulnerability from low population numbers. The plant 
in all likelihood has a more extensive range than what is currently 
known; access for surveying on private land has been limited. This 
draft Recovery Plan includes information about the species and provides 
objectives and actions needed to downlist, then delist the species. 
Recovery activities designed to achieve these objectives include 
protecting known populations, searching for additional populations, 
performing outreach activities to educate and obtain assistance from 
the general public to conserve the species and its habitat, and 
establishing additional populations through reintroduction in the known 
range of the plant.
    Restoring an endangered or threatened animal or plant to the point 
where it is again a secure, self-sustaining member of its ecosystem is 
a primary goal of the Service's endangered species program. To help 
guide the recovery effort, the Service is working to prepare Recovery 
Plans for most of the listed species native to the United States. 
Recovery Plans describe actions considered necessary for conservation 
of species, establish criteria for downlisting or delisting them, and 
estimate time and cost for implementing the recovery measures needed.
    The Endangered Species Act of 1973 (Act), as amended (16 U.S.C. 
1531 et seq.) requires the development of Recovery Plans for listed 
species unless such a Plan would not promote the conservation of a 
particular species. Section 4(f) of the Act, as amended in

[[Page 2351]]

1988, requires that public notice and an opportunity for public review 
and comment be provided during Recovery Plan development. The Service 
will consider all information presented during a public comment period 
prior to approval of each new or revised Recovery Plan. The Service and 
other Federal agencies will also take these comments into account in 
the course of implementing Recovery Plans.
    The draft Recovery Plan is being submitted for technical and agency 
review. After consideration of comments received during the review 
period, the Recovery Plan will be submitted for final approval.

Public Comments Solicited

    The Service solicits written comments on the Recovery Plan 
described. All comments received by the date specified above will be 
considered prior to approval of the Recovery Plan.

    Authority: The authority for this action is Section 4(f) of the 
Endangered Species Act, 16 U.S.C. 1533(f).

    Dated: October 28, 2002.
Charlie Sanchez, Jr.,
Acting Regional Director, Region 2.
[FR Doc. 03-1019 Filed 1-15-03; 8:45 am]