[Federal Register: March 24, 1999 (Volume 64, Number 56)]
[Proposed Rules]               
[Page 14209-14210]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 17

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Notice of 
Reopening of Comment Period on Our Re-evaluation of Whether Designation 
of Critical Habitat Is Prudent for 245 Hawaiian Plants

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of reopening of comment period.


SUMMARY: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service, provide notice of reopening 
the public comment period on our re-evaluation of whether designation 
of critical habitat is prudent for 245 Hawaiian plants. Our original 
notice was published in the Federal Register on November 30, 1998 (63 
FR 65805) and the original public comment period was opened from 
November 30, 1998, to March 1, 1999. This notice reopens the comment 
period to May 24, 1999.

ADDRESSES: Comments and materials concerning the notice should be sent 
to Robert P. Smith, Pacific Islands Manager, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, 300 Ala Moana Boulevard, Room 3-122, Box 50088, Honolulu, HI 
96850 (telephone: 808/541-2749; facsimile: 808/541-2756).

Supervisor, Ecological Services (see ADDRESSES section) (telephone: 
808/541-3441; facsimile: 808/541-3470).



    On January 29, 1997, the Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund (now 
Earthjustice Legal Defense Fund) filed a lawsuit on behalf of the 
Conservation Council for Hawaii, the Sierra Club, and the Hawaiian 
Botanical Society in U.S. District Court in Honolulu, Hawaii, for the 
Service's failure to designate critical habitat for 278 endangered or 
threatened Hawaiian plant taxa. Because the statute of limitations had 
elapsed for many of the plants, this list of plants was later reduced 
to 245 taxa.
    The 245 plant species that are the subject of our November 30, 
1998, notice were listed by the Service over a period of several years, 
between 1990 and 1996, at which time the Service determined that 
designation of critical habitat was not prudent for one or more of the 
following three reasons: designation of critical habitat would increase 
the likelihood of illegal taking or vandalism; designation of critical 
habitat would not be beneficial for plant species located on private 
property; and, designation of critical habitat for plant species 
located on Federal lands provides little or no additional benefit 
beyond the existing precautions the Federal government must take under 
section 7 of the Act.
    The 245 plant taxa are: Abutilon eremitopetalum, Abutilon 
sandwicense, Acaena exigua, Achyranthes mutica, Adenophorus periens, 
Alectryon macrococcus, Alsinidendron lychnoides, Alsinidendron 
obovatum, Alsinidendron trinerve, Alsinidendron viscosum, Amaranthus 
brownii, Argyroxiphium kauense, Argyroxiphium sandwicense ssp. 
macrocephalum, Adenophorus periens, Asplenium fragile var. insulare, 
Bidens micrantha ssp. kalealaha, Bidens wiebkei, Bonamia menziesii, 
Brighamia insignis, Brighamia rockii, Canavalia molokaiensis, Cenchrus 
agrimonioides, Centaurium sebaeoides, Chamaesyce celastroides var. 
kaenana, Chamasyce deppeana, Chamaesyce halemanui, Chamaesyce herbstii, 
Chamaesyce kuwaleana, Chamaesyce rockii, Clermontia drepanomorpha, 
Clermontia lindseyana, Clermontia oblongifolia ssp. brevipes, 
Clermontia oblongifolia ssp. mauiensis, Clermontia peleana,

[[Page 14210]]

Clermontia pyrularia, Colubrina oppositifolia, Ctenitis squamigera, 
Cyanea asarifolia, Cyanea acuminata, Cyanea copelandii ssp. copelandii, 
Cyanea dunbarii, Cyanea grimesiana ssp. grimesiana, Cyanea grimesiana 
ssp. obatae, Cyanea hamatiflora ssp. carlsonii, Cyanea humboldtiana, 
Cyanea koolauensis, Cyanea lobata, Cyanea longiflora, Cyanea 
macrostegia ssp. gibsonii, Cyanea mannii, Cyanea mceldowneyi, Cyanea 
pinnatifida, Cyanea platyphylla, Cyanea procera, Cyanea recta, Cyanea 
remyi, Cyanea st.-johnii, Cyanea shipmanii, Cyanea stictophylla, Cyanea 
superba, Cyanea truncata, Cyanea undulata, Cyperus trachysanthos, 
Cyrtandra crenata, Cyrtandra cyaneoides, Cyrtandra dentata, Cyrtandra 
giffardii, Cyrtandra limahuliensis, Cyrtandra munroi, Cyrtandra 
polyantha, Cyrtandra subumbellata, Cyrtandra tintinnabula, Cyrtandra 
viridiflora, Delissea rhytidosperma, Delissea rivularis, Delissea 
subcordata, Delissea undulata, Diellia erecta, Diellia falcata, Diellia 
pallida, Diellia unisora, Diplazium molokaiense, Dubautia herbstobatae, 
Dubautia latifolia, Dubautia pauciflorula, Eragrostis fosbergii, 
Eugenia koolauensis, Euphorbia haeleeleana, Exocarpos luteolus, 
Flueggea neowawraea, Gahnia lanaiensis, Gardenia mannii, Geranium 
arboreum, Geranium multiflorum, Gouania meyenii, Gouania vitifolia, 
Hedyotis cookiana, Hedyotis coriacea, Hedyotis degeneri, Hedyotis 
mannii, Hedyotis parvula, Hedyotis st.-johnii, Hesperomannia 
arborescens, Hesperomannia arbuscula, Hesperomannia lydgatei, 
Hibiscadelphus giffardianus, Hibiscadelphus hualalaiensis, 
Hibiscadelphus woodii, Hibiscus arnottianus ssp. immaculatus, Hibiscus 
brackenridgei, Hibiscus clayi, Hibiscus waimeae ssp. hannerae, Huperzia 
mannii, Ischaemum byrone, Isodendrion hosakae, Isodendrion laurifolium, 
Isodendrion longifolium, Isodendrion pyrifolium, Kokia kauaiensis, 
Labordia cyrtandrae, Labordia lydgatei, Labordia tinifolia var. 
wahiawaensis, Lepidium arbuscula, Lipochaeta fauriei, Lipochaeta 
kamolensis, Lipochaeta lobata var. leptophylla, Lipochaeta micrantha, 
Lipochaeta tenuifolia, Lipochaeta waimeaensis, Lobelia gaudichaudii 
ssp. koolauensis, Lobelia monostachya, Lobelia niihauensis, Lobelia 
oahuensis, Lycopodium nutans, Lysimachia filifolia, Lysimachia 
lydgatei, Lysimachia maxima, Mariscus fauriei, Mariscus pennatiformis, 
Marsilea villosa, Melicope adscendens, Melicope balloui, Melicope 
haupuensis, Melicope knudsenii, Melicope lydgatei, Melicope 
mucronulata, Melicope ovalis, Melicope pallida, Melicope 
quadrangularis, Melicope reflexa, Melicope saint-johnii, Melicope 
zahlbruckneri, Munroidendron racemosum, Myrsine juddii, Myrsine 
linearifolia, Neraudia angulata, Neraudia ovata, Neraudia sericea, 
Nothocestrum breviflorum, Nothocestrum peltatum, Nototrichium humile, 
Ocrosia kilauaensis, Panicum niihauense, Peucedanum sandwicense, 
Phyllostegia glabra var. lanaiensis, Phyllostegia hirsuta, Phyllostegia 
kaalaensis, Phyllostegia knudsenii, Phyllostegia mannii, Phyllostegia 
mollis, Phyllostegia parviflora, Phyllostegia racemosa, Phyllostegia 
velutina, Phyllostegia warshaueri, Phyllostegia waimeae, Phyllostegia 
wawrana, Plantago hawaiensis, Plantago princeps, Platanthera holochila, 
Pleomele hawaiiensis, Poa mannii, Poa sandvicensis, Poa siphonoglossa, 
Portulaca sclerocarpa, Pritchardia affinis, Pritchardia aylmer-
robinsonii, Pritchardia kaalae, Pritchardia munroi, Pritchardia 
napaliensis, Pritchardia remota, Pritchardia schattaueri, Pritchardia 
viscosa, Pteralyxia kauaiensis, Pteris lidgatei, Remya kauaiensis, 
Remya mauiensis, Remya montgomeryi, Rollandia crispa, Sanicula 
mariversa, Sanicula purpurea, Schiedea apokremnos, Schiedea 
haleakalensis, Schiedea helleri, Schiedea hookeri, Schiedea kaalae, 
Stenogyne campanulata, Schiedea kauaiensis, Stenogyne kanehoana, 
Schiedea kealiae, Schiedea lydgatei,Schiedea membranacea, Schiedea 
nuttallii, Schiedea sarmentosa, Schiedea spergulina var. 
leiopoda,Schiedea spergulina var. spergulina, Schiedea stellarioides, 
Schiedea verticillata, Sesbania tomentosa, Sicyos alba, Silene 
alexandri, Silene hawaiiensis, Silene lanceolata, Silene perlmanii, 
Solanum incompletum, Solanum sandwicense, Spermolepis hawaiiensis, 
Stenogyne bifida, Tetramolopium arenarium, Tetramolopium capillare, 
Tetramolopium filiforme, Tetramolopium lepidotum ssp. lepidotum, 
Tetramolopium remyi, Tetramolopium rockii, Tetraplasandra gymnocarpa, 
Trematolobelia singularis, Urera kaalae, Viola chamissoniana ssp. 
chamissoniana, Viola helenae, Viola kauaensis var. wahiawaensis, Viola 
lanaiensis, Viola oahuensis, Wilkesia hobdyi, Xylosma crenatum, 
Zanthoxylum dipetalum var. tomentosum, Zanthoxylum hawaiiense.
    In accordance with the U.S. District Court's August 10, 1998, order 
(Civil No. 97-00098ACK Conservation Council for Hawaii, et al. vs. 
Bruce Babbitt, et al.), the Service is reconsidering the not prudent 
determinations that were made for these 245 plant species. We published 
a notice seeking any new information that may affect whether we proceed 
with a proposal to designate critical habitat for these species (63 FR 
65805) on November 30, 1998. The original public comment period closed 
on March 1, 1999. Four respondents requested that the public comment 
period be extended to allow all interested parties ample opportunity to 
respond to our request for comments. Therefore, we are reopening the 
public comment period and continue to request comments, suggestions, or 
information on our re-evaluation of whether designation of critical 
habitat is prudent for these 245 plant species.
    We are soliciting information concerning:
    (1) Biological, commercial trade, vandalism, or other relevant data 
concerning any threat to these species;
    (2) The location of any additional populations of these species and 
the reasons why any habitat should or should not be determined to be 
critical habitat as provided by section 4 of the Act;
    (3) Additional information concerning the range, distribution, and 
population size of these species;
    (4) Current or planned activities in the subject area and their 
possible impacts on these species;
    (5) Additional information on the principal biological or physical 
constituent elements that are essential to the conservation of these 
species. These primary constituent elements may include, but are not 
limited to, the following: seasonal wetland or dryland, water quality 
or quantity, plant pollinator, geological formation, vegetation type, 
and specific soil types;
    (6) Information on existing management for any of these species and 
benefits to these species.
    This information should be submitted by May 24, 1999, to the Fish 
and Wildlife office in the ADDRESSES section.
    Author: The primary author of this document is Christa Russell (see 
ADDRESSES section).

    Authority: The authority for this action is the Endangered 
Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.).

    Dated: March 17, 1999.
Thomas J. Dwyer,
Acting Regional Director.
[FR Doc. 99-7153 Filed 3-23-99; 8:45 am]