[Federal Register: April 24, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 78)]
[Page 20360]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Final Comprehensive Conservation Plan for Kirwin National 
Wildlife Refuge, KS

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announces that 
the final Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP) and Environmental 
Assessment (EA) for Kirwin National Wildlife Refuge (Refuge) are 
available. This final CCP/EA describes how the Service intends to 
manage the Refuge for the next 15 years.

ADDRESSES: Please provide written comments to Toni Griffin, Planning 
Team Leader, Division of Refuge Planning, P.O. Box 25486, Denver 
Federal Center, Denver, Colorado 80225, or electronically to 
toni_griffin@fws.gov. A copy of the CCP may be obtained by writing to U.S. 

Fish and Wildlife Service, Division of Refuge Planning, 134 Union 
Boulevard, Suite 300, Lakewood, Colorado 80228; or by download from 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Toni Griffin, 303-236-4378 (phone); 
303-236-4792 (fax); or toni_griffin@fws.gov (e-mail).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This Refuge, the first national wildlife 
refuge in Kansas, was established in 1954 as an overlay project on a 
U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) irrigation and flood control 
reservoir. Reclamation owns the land and controls reservoir water 
levels, while the Refuge staff manages all other activities on the land 
and water.
    Basic authority for the existence of the Refuge stems from the Fish 
and Wildlife Coordination Act, which authorized the establishment of 
wildlife areas on federal water projects. The primary purpose of the 
reservoir is to provide for flood control and provide irrigation water 
for the Kirwin Irrigation District. The purpose of the Refuge ``* * * 
shall be administered by him (Secretary of the Interior) directly or in 
accordance with such rules and regulations for the conservation, 
maintenance, and management of wildlife, resources thereof, and its 
habitat thereon * * * in behalf of the National Migratory Bird 
Management Program'' (Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act). The Refuge 
is managed in accordance with a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) between 
Reclamation and the Service that was updated and signed in 1985.
    The draft CCP and EA was made available to the public for a 30-day 
review and comment period following the announcement in the Federal 
Register on March 24, 2006 (71 FR 14939-14940). The draft CCP/EA 
identified and evaluated two alternatives for managing the Refuge for 
the next 15 years.
    Alternative A, the No Action Alternative, would continue current 
management. The Refuge would continue to be managed in accordance with 
the MOA between Reclamation and the Service; the Cooperative Agreement 
between the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks; and the Kirwin 
Comprehensive Management Plan completed in 1996. Existing and proposed 
Refuge uses would be evaluated to comply with current Refuge laws, 
regulations, and policies.
    Alternative B, the Preferred Alternative (Wildlife, Habitat, and 
Public Use), strives to implement the National Wildlife Refuge System 
Improvement Act of 1997. Under this alternative, the Refuge will 
continue to be managed in accordance with the current MOA between 
Reclamation and the Service. Other actions include continued habitat 
management for waterfowl and game species; expanded habitat management 
for nongame species and species of conservation concern by increasing 
efforts to manage and plant native grasses and forbs; promotion of 
wildlife-dependent recreation, with hunting, fishing, wildlife 
observation, wildlife photography, environmental education, and 
interpretation receiving priority attention; discontinuance of non-
wildlife dependent recreation uses (i.e., water and jet skiing, 
personal watercraft, camping, swimming, horseback riding, volleyball, 
basketball, tournament fishing, power and speed boating); enhanced 
management of invasive species; collection of in-depth baseline 
wildlife and habitat data on the Refuge, from which to monitor 
management actions; and development of partnerships with other state, 
federal, and conservation organizations to achieve common goals that 
enhance and support the Refuge program.
    The Service is furnishing this notice to advise other agencies and 
the public of the availability of the final CCP, to provide information 
on the desired conditions for the Refuge, and to detail how the Service 
will implement management strategies. Based on the review and 
evaluation of the information contained in the EA, the Regional 
Director has determined that implementation of the final CCP does not 
constitute a major federal action that would significantly affect the 
quality of the human environment within the meaning of Section 
102(2)(c) of the National Environmental Policy Act. Therefore, an 
Environmental Impact Statement will not be prepared. Future site-
specific proposals discussed in the final CCP will be addressed in 
separate planning efforts with full public involvement.

    Dated: December 8, 2006.
James J. Slack,
Deputy Regional Director, Region 6, Denver, Colorado.

    Editorial Note: This document was received at the Office of the 
Federal Register on April 19, 2007.
[FR Doc. E7-7740 Filed 4-23-07; 8:45 am]