[Federal Register: November 20, 2009 (Volume 74, Number 223)]
[Page 60288-60289]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

[FWS-R4-R-2009-N173; 40136-1265-0000-S3]

Bayou Teche National Wildlife Refuge, St. Mary Parish, LA

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability: final comprehensive conservation plan 
and finding of no significant impact.


SUMMARY: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the 
availability of our final comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and 
finding of no significant impact (FONSI) for the environmental 
assessment for Bayou Teche National Wildlife Refuge (NWR). In the final 
CCP, we describe how we will manage this refuge for the next 15 years.

ADDRESSES: You may obtain a copy of the CCP by writing to: Mr. Paul 
Yakupzack, Refuge Manager, Mandalay NWR, 3599 Bayou Black Drive, Houma, 
LA 70360. You may also access and download the document from the 
Service's Web site: http://southeast.fws.gov/planning.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Paul Yakupzack; telephone: 985/
853-1078; fax: 985/853-1079; e-mail: paul_yakupzack@fws.gov.



    With this notice, we finalize the CCP process for Bayou Teche NWR. 
We started this process through a notice in the Federal Register on 
March 19, 2007 (72 FR 12811). For more about the process, see that 
    Bayou Teche NWR is located near the town of Franklin in St. Mary 
Parish, Louisiana. The refuge contains 9,028 acres and is composed of 
wet bottomland hardwood forests laced with bayous and canals. The 
refuge was established on October 31, 2001, on lands important to the 
coastal subpopulation of the Louisiana black bear. The refuge consists 
of six separate units, ranging in size from 3,724 acres to 80 acres.
    We announce our decision and the availability of the final CCP and 
FONSI for Bayou Teche NWR in accordance with the National Environmental 
Policy Act (NEPA) [40 CFR 1506.6(b)] requirements. We completed a 
thorough analysis of impacts on the human environment, which we 
included in the draft comprehensive conservation plan and environmental 
assessment (Draft CCP/EA). The CCP will guide us in managing and 
administering Bayou Teche NWR for the next 15 years.
    The compatibility determinations for boating, recreational fishing, 
recreational hunting, wildlife observation/photography, and 
environmental education/interpretation are available in the CCP.

[[Page 60289]]


    The National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966 (16 
U.S.C. 668dd-668ee) (Administration Act), as amended by the National 
Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, requires us to develop 
a CCP for each national wildlife refuge. The purpose for developing a 
CCP is to provide refuge managers with a 15-year plan for achieving 
refuge purposes and contributing toward the mission of the National 
Wildlife Refuge System, consistent with sound principles of fish and 
wildlife management, conservation, legal mandates, and our policies. In 
addition to outlining broad management direction on conserving wildlife 
and their habitats, CCPs identify wildlife-dependent recreational 
opportunities available to the public, including opportunities for 
hunting, fishing, wildlife observation, wildlife photography, and 
environmental education and interpretation. We will review and update 
the CCP at least every 15 years in accordance with the Administration 


    Approximately 100 copies of the Draft CCP/EA were made available 
for a 30-day public review period as announced in the Federal Register 
on June 8, 2009 (74 FR 27174). Several comments were received from 
local citizens and the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.

Selected Alternative

    After considering the comments we received, and based on the sound 
professional judgment of the planning team, we selected Alternative B 
to implement the CCP. The primary focuses of the CCP are to optimize 
Louisiana black bear and wetland habitats, monitor targeted flora and 
fauna representative of the lower Atchafalaya Basin, and provide 
quality public use programs and wildlife-dependent recreational 
activities. Based on the mission of the National Wildlife Refuge 
System, the purposes for which Bayou Teche NWR was established, and the 
focus of the Lower Mississippi River Ecosystem priorities, we believe 
Alternative B best fits the goals of the refuge.


    This notice is published under the authority of the National 
Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, Public Law 105-57.

    Dated: August 24, 2009.
Patrick Leonard,
Acting Regional Director.
[FR Doc. E9-27888 Filed 11-19-09; 8:45 am]