[Federal Register: January 22, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 13)]
[Page 2709]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of intent: preparation of a comprehensive conservation 
plan and environmental assessment


SUMMARY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announces the 
preparation of a Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP) and 
Environmental Assessment (EA) for Canaan Valley National Wildlife 
Refuge (NWR). We intend to gather the information necessary for 
preparing the CCP and EA pursuant to the National Wildlife Refuge 
System Administration Act of 1966, as amended by the National Wildlife 
Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, and the National Environmental 
Policy Act of 1969. We are providing this notice to advise other 
Federal and State agencies and the public of our intention to conduct 
detailed planning on this refuge, and to obtain suggestions and 
information on the scope of issues to include in the environmental 
    We will involve the public through open houses, informational and 
technical meetings, and written comments. Special mailings, newspaper 
articles, and announcements will provide information about 
opportunities for public involvement in the planning process.

DATES: We are planning stakeholders meetings and a public scoping 
meeting for February--March 2007 in Davis, West Virginia. For the 
public meetings, we will announce their locations, dates, and times at 
least 2 weeks in advance in special mailings, newspaper notices, and 
through personal contacts.

ADDRESSES: Canaan Valley NWR, HC 70, Box 200, Davis, West Virginia 
26260, at 304-866-3858 (telephone); 304-866-3852 (FAX); Web site http://www.fws.gov/canaanvalley or http://www.fws.gov/northeast/planning/.


FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Bill Zinni, Refuge Planner, U.S. Fish 
and Wildlife Service, 300 Westgate Center Drive, Hadley, Massachusetts 
01035; 413-253-8522 (telephone); 413-253-8468 (FAX); 
northeastplanning@fws.gov (e-mail), noting Canaan Valley NWR in the 

subject title.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Under the National Wildlife Refuge System 
Administration Act of 1966, as amended by the National Wildlife Refuge 
System Improvement Act of 1997 (16 U.S.C. 668dd-668ee), we manage all 
lands in the National Wildlife Refuge System in accordance with an 
approved CCP. The plan guides management decisions and identifies 
refuge goals, long-range objectives, and strategies for achieving 
refuge purposes over a 15-year period.
    Our planning process covers many elements, including wildlife and 
habitat management, visitor and recreational activities, cultural 
resource protection, and facilities and infrastructure. We will 
determine which existing or proposed uses of the refuge are appropriate 
and compatible. We will also conduct a wilderness review and a wild and 
scenic rivers evaluation to determine whether any areas on the refuge 
qualify for those Federal designations.
    We encourage public input into the planning process. The comments 
we receive will help identify key issues and develop refuge goals and 
objectives for managing refuge resources and visitors. Additional 
opportunities for public participation will arise throughout the 
planning process, which we expect to complete in 2008. We have already 
begun collecting data to compile up-to-date information on refuge 
resources as a foundation for science-based resource decisions. We will 
prepare the EA in accordance with the Council on Environmental Quality 
procedures for implementing the National Environmental Policy Act of 
1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321-4370d).
    The 15,965-acre Canaan Valley NWR was established in 1994 to 
conserve and protect fish and wildlife resources, including endangered 
and threatened species, and the unique wetland and upland habitats of 
this high elevation valley. The refuge is located in Tucker County, 
West Virginia, and has an approved acquisition boundary of 24,000 
acres. It includes the largest wetland complex in the State, and 
encompasses the headwaters of the Blackwater and Little Blackwater 
rivers. The refuge supports species of concern at both the Federal and 
State levels, including the Cheat Mountain salamander, West Virginia 
northern flying squirrel, Indiana bat, bald eagle, and others. Its 
dominant habitats include wet meadows, peatlands, shrub and forested 
swamps, beaver ponds and streams, northern hardwood forest, old fields 
and shrubland, and managed grassland.
    Refuge visitors engage in wildlife observation and photography, 
environmental education, interpretation, hunting, and fishing. The 
refuge headquarters is located in the valley, just south of Davis, West 

     Dated: December 8, 2006.
Richard O. Bennett,
Acting Regional Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Hadley, 
 [FR Doc. E7-792 Filed 1-19-07; 8:45 am]