The October 2013 federal government shutdown suspended many activities of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, including the review of projects for effects on listed species. Because the shutdown lasted 16 days, it has added 16 days to the Service's normal 35-day review period, for projects submitted during the shutdown or as many as 34 days prior to the shutdown. The Service's normal 35-day review period is reinstated for projects received on October 17, 2013, or later. Project proponents with questions about the status of reviews for specific projects may contact the Service for additional information.
Project reviews in Oklahoma are typically
in one of two forms; those that have a federal nexus (where
a federal agency funds, authorizes, or carries out the program
or project) and those that do not have a federal nexus. For
those projects where a federal nexus exists, the federal action
agency is responsible using the following instructions for
reviewing and submitting project requests to the Oklahoma
Ecological Services Field Office (OKESFO), unless they have
formally designated a non-federal representative. All final
determinations must be approved by the federal action agency.
If your project does not have a federal nexus, the following
instructions will allow you to determine if further coordination
with the OKESFO may be necessary.
For wind energy projects
additional review will be necessary to evaluate the project’s
potential impacts. Until the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
finalizes wind guidelines, follow these project review steps
and submit the project information to this office for review
regardless of the outcome in the species conclusions table.
For additional information on wind energy, please visit the
For communication tower projects
follow the self
For Actions with No Impacts to Federally-listed
Species or other Federal Trust Resources - Please
review and use this letter
as blanket clearance for certain projects which, in most cases,
the Service believes will have no impact on federally-listed
species or other trust resources. If your actions fall under
the actions described in this letter, then print this letter
for your records and do not continue with the project review.
For all other project types, the following
steps will allow you to conduct a review of a project’s potential
impacts on federally listed threatened and endangered species,
candidate species, and federally designated critical
habitat. At the end of this review process you will be able
to: (1) certify that you have completed required coordination
with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) under the
Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531-1544, 87 Stat.
884), as amended (ESA); and (2) expedite additional review
by the Service.
These steps also provide information for your project review
under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (P.L.
91-190, 42 U.S.C. 4321-4347, 83 Stat. 852), as amended (NEPA)
for federally listed species. However, these steps do not
address other requirements under NEPA (i.e., wetlands, floodplains,
and other important environmental resources). Compliance with
NEPA is a separate process, that completed alone, does not
ensure compliance with the ESA. The Federal action agency,
not the Service, must ensure that all of the requirements
necessary to comply with NEPA are met. Additional information
regarding compliance with NEPA and other environmental statutes
be found here.
Please note that these project review steps do not currently
cover the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act (BGEPA) (16
U.S.C. 668-668c, 54 Stat. 250) , as amended, or the Migratory
Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) (16 U.S.C. 703-712; Ch. 128; July 13,
1918; 40 Stat. 755). Additional guidance for the BGEPA is
located here, and for the MBTA is
located here. However, if you have any information
regarding your project’s impacts to bald and golden eagles
or migratory birds, please include them in your project review
During the review process, you will be instructed to complete
a "species conclusion table" and add information and documents
which will be included in your “project review package.” Once
you complete the review process, you may be required to submit
the project review package to this office. We prefer that
you submit project review packages electronically to OKProjectReview@fws.gov.
Please note that any single email, including
attachments, must be smaller than 25 MB. If a single
email would be larger than 25 MB, please spread out multiple
attachments among several emails (use the same subject name
and project reference in all emails related to an individual
project). If this is not practical, please mail a hard copy
or DVD containing the project review package to our office:
US Fish & Wildlife Service
Oklahoma Ecological Services Field Office
9014 East 21st St.
Tulsa, Oklahoma 74129
All project reviews will receive a return receipt to inform
you that your project has been successfully submitted.
Maintain a complete copy of the project review package since
it will become an integral part of your official record of compliance.
Upon receipt of your project review package, please allow the
OKESFO 30 days to review the information provided and respond,
To begin project review
proceed to Step