[Federal Register: December 3, 2004 (Volume 69, Number 232)]
[Page 70276]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Egmont Key, Pinellas, and Passage Key National Wildlife Refuges

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of intent to prepare a Comprehensive Conservation Plan 
and Environmental Assessment for Egmont Key, Pinellas, and Passage Key 
National Wildlife Refuges located in Hillsborough, Pinellas, and 
Manatee Counties, Florida, respectively. These three refuges, known as 
the Tampa Bay Refuges, are managed as part of the Chassahowitzka 
National Wildlife Refuge Complex.


SUMMARY: This notice advises the public that the Fish and Wildlife 
Service, Southeast Region, intends to gather information necessary to 
prepare a comprehensive conservation plan and environmental assessment 
pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act and its implementing 
regulations. The Service is furnishing this notice in compliance with 
the National Wildlife Refute System Administration Act of 1966, as 
amended (16 U.S.C. 668dd et seq.), to achieve the following:
    (1) To advise other agencies and the public of our intentions, and
    (2) To obtain suggestions and information on the scope of issues to 
include in the environmental documents.
    The Service will solicit information from the public via open 
houses, meetings, and written comments. Special mailings, newspaper 
articles, and announcements will inform people in the general area near 
each refuge of the time and place of such opportunities for public 
input to the planning process.

DATES: To ensure consideration, comments must be received within 30 
days of the date of this notice.

ADDRESSES: Address comments, questions, and requests for more 
information to the following: Mary Morris, Natural Resource Planner, 
St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, P.O. Box 68, St. Marks, Florida 
32355; Telephone 850/925-6121; e-mail mary_morris@fws.gov. Additional 
information concerning these refuges may be found at the Service's 
Internet site http://www.fws.gov/.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: By Federal law, all lands within the 
National Wildlife Refuge System are to be managed in accordance with an 
approved comprehensive conservation plan. This plan guides management 
decisions and identifies the goals, long-range objectives, and 
strategies for achieving refuge purposes. The planning process will 
consider many elements, including habitat and wildlife management, 
habitat protection and acquisition, public use, and cultural resources. 
Public input to this planning process is essential.
    Egmont Key National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1974 and 
consists of 350 acres. The refuge, accessible only by boat, provides 
nesting, feeding, and resting habitat for brown pelicans, terns, and 
other colonial nesting water birds.
    Pinellas National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1951 and 
consists of 403 acres. The refuge, accessible only by boat, was 
established as a breeding ground for colonial bird species. It is 
comprised of several islands, including Indian, Tarpon, Mule, and 
Jackass Keys.
    Passage Key National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1905 and 
consists of 30 acres. The refuge, accessible only by boat, provides 
nesting, feeding, and resting habitat for colonial water birds, 
including laughing gulls, royal terns, black skimmers, sandwich terns, 
brown pelicans, and oyster catchers.

    Authority: This notice is published under the authority of the 
National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, Public Law 

    Dated: October 14, 2004.
Cynthia K. Dohner,
Acting Regional Director.
[FR Doc. 04-26660 Filed 12-2-04; 8:45 am]