[Federal Register: August 22, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 162)]
[Page 47064-47065]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Draft Recovery Plan for the Ivory-billed Woodpecker (Campephilus 

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of document availability for review and comment.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (``we'') announce the 
availability of the Draft Recovery Plan for the Ivory-billed Woodpecker 
(Campephilus principalis). This draft recovery plan includes specific 
criteria and measures that should be taken in order to effectively 
recover the species to the point where delisting is warranted under the 
Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). We solicit review and 
comment from local, State, and Federal agencies and the public on this 
draft recovery plan.

DATES: Comments on the draft recovery plan must be received on or 
before October 22, 2007.

ADDRESSES: Copies of the draft recovery plan are available by request 
from the Lafayette Field Office of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 
646 Cajundome Boulevard, Suite 400, Lafayette, Louisiana 70506, or by 
visiting our recovery plan Web site at http://endangered.fws.gov/recovery/index.html#plans.
 If you wish to comment, you may submit your 

comments by one of the following methods:
    1. You may mail or hand-deliver written comments and materials to 
the Field Supervisor, at the above address or;
    2. You may fax your comments to 337-291-3139.
    Comments and materials received are available for public inspection 
on request, by appointment, during normal business hours at the above 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Deborah Fuller, at the above address, 
or telephone 337-291-3100.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Restoring listed animals and plants to the 
point where they are again secure, self-sustaining components of their 
ecosystems is a primary goal of our threatened and endangered species 
program. To help guide the recovery effort, we prepare recovery plans 
for listed species native to the United States, pursuant to section 
4(f) of the Act, unless such a plan would not promote the conservation 
of a particular species. Recovery plans describe actions that may be 
necessary for conservation of the species, establish criteria for 
reclassification from endangered to threatened status or removal from 
the list of threatened and endangered species, and estimate the time 
and cost for implementing the needed recovery measures.
    The Ivory-billed woodpecker is extremely rare and was, until 
recently, commonly accepted as extirpated from its known range in the 
United States. The species appeared to be widely distributed throughout 
the southeast prior to European settlement. The Ivory-billed 
woodpecker's disappearance is closely linked with logging and clearing 
of the contiguous forest habitats which once covered much of the 
southeastern United States. Additionally, as habitats became fragmented 
and the species increasingly rare, collecting and direct mortality may 
have extirpated the bird in certain areas.
    Despite having been listed since 1967, no recovery plan was 
prepared, in large part due to the lack of any clear, undisputed 
evidence (since 1944) of the species' continued existence. Evidence 
supporting the presence of at least one bird in the Bayou de View area 
of Cache River National Wildlife Refuge in 2004, as well as additional 
information, has generated the need to complete a recovery plan. Given 
the limited information on the current number of individuals throughout 
the species' range and the limited knowledge on biology, habitat 
requirements, and genetic information, we recognize the need to 
generate scientific information to better address the threats and 

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factors to this species and to develop additional specific recovery 
    The recovery strategy will initially focus on learning more about 
the species' status and ecology, including documenting known locations 
and characterizing these habitats. Population goals are not identified, 
but are acknowledged as key to recovery. Current efforts include 
development of models and additional research that will generate these 
spatially explicit population goals.
    Recovery Objectives: The recovery plan identifies actions needed to 
achieve long-term viability for the Ivory-billed woodpecker and focuses 
on these goals:
    1. Management to reduce risks to the existing population,
    2. Protection and enhancement of suitable habitat, and;
    3. Actions to reduce or eliminate threats sufficient to allow 
restoration of additional wild populations.
    The emphasis for recovery will be on the distribution of additional 
viable populations in the historic range of the species. Discovery, 
documentation, and subsequent management of additional populations meet 
scientifically accepted goals for the promotion of viable populations 
of listed species.
    Recovery Criteria:
    1. Determine current habitat use and needs of existing populations.
    2. Survey potential habitats for new occurrences.
    3. Conserve and enhance habitat on public land. Add additional 
acreage to public habitat inventory via land acquisition from willing 
    4. Conserve and enhance habitat on private lands through the use of 
agreements, conservation easements, habitat conservation plans, and 
public outreach to facilitate appropriate management actions.
    5. Determine viability of existing populations (numbers, breeding 
success, population genetics, and ecology).
    6. Determine the number and geographic distribution of 
subpopulations needed for a self-sustaining metapopulation and evaluate 
suitable habitat for species reintroduction.
    At present there is limited information on the current population 
abundance, distribution, habitat requirements, and biology. More 
specific, quantifiable criteria for downlisting and delisting this 
species will be developed as additional knowledge concerning these 
critical attributes is acquired.

Public Comments Solicited

    We solicit written comments on the recovery plan described. We will 
consider all comments received by the date specified in DATES section 
prior to a decision on final approval of the revised recovery plan.
    Our practice is to make all 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 addresses from the record, which we will honor to the extent 
allowable by law. In some circumstances, we would withhold also from 
the record a respondent's identity, as allowable by law. If you wish 
for us to withhold your name and/or address, you must state this 
prominently at the beginning of your comments. 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.


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

    Dated: April 10, 2007.
Cynthia K. Dohner,
Acting Regional Director, Southeast Region.

    Editorial Note: This document was received at the Office of the 
Federal Register on August 17, 2007.

 [FR Doc. E7-16622 Filed 8-21-07; 8:45 am]