Conserving the Nature of America
Press Release
Service Proposes Revision of Critical Habitat for Spreading Navarretia Plant

June 9, 2009


Division of Public Affairs
External Affairs
Telephone: 703-358-2220

Carlsbad, CA - The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announced today a proposal to revise critical habitat for Navarretia fossalis (spreading navarretia), a federally threatened plant in southern California. Approximately 6,872 acres of habitat in portions of Los Angeles, Riverside, and San Diego counties are being proposed as critical habitat.An advance copy of the text of the proposed rule is available online through the Federal Register at http://www.regulations.govPolicy and Directives Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 222, Arlington, VA 22203. Comments will be accepted until August 10, 2009. We will not accept e-mail or faxes and all comments received will be posted on Requests for a public hearing must be submitted electronically or in writing to one of the addresses above by July 27, 2009.

A total of 7,086 acres of essential habitat are identified in this proposed rule, of which 214 acres are located on Marine Corps Base, Camp Pendleton and on Marine Corps Air Station, Miramar. These installations have completed Integrated Natural Resource Management Plans that provide a conservation benefit to spreading navarretia and are exempt from critical habitat.

Of the 6,872 acres proposed for critical habitat, the Service is considering excluding 5,675 acres covered under the Western Riverside County Multiple Species Habitat Conservation Plan; 86 acres covered by the County of San Diego Subarea Plan under the San Diego Multiple Species Conservation Program; and 3 acres covered by the City of Carlsbad Habitat Management Plan under the San Diego Multiple Habitat Conservation Program.

Areas proposed as critical habitat are identified in six units and are occupied by the plant. Over half of the lands are privately owned with the remaining areas managed by State, local, and federal agencies.

The proposed rule to revise critical habitat is a result of a lawsuit filed against the Service by the Center for Biological Diversity, challenging the validity of our exclusions in the 2005 critical habitat rule.

Identified essential habitat in this proposed rule is approximately 12,313 acres less than what was identified in the 2005 designation. This is primarily due to refinements of essential habitat along the San Jacinto River, at the Salt Creek Vernal Pool Complex, and at the Santa Rosa Plateau Ecological Reserve. However, the Service has also identified new areas of essential habitat at Santa Fe Valley (Crosby Estates), Carroll Canyon,

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