[Federal Register: June 17, 1999 (Volume 64, Number 116)]
[Proposed Rules]               
[Page 32751-32756]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

[[Page 32751]]


Part VII

Department of the Interior


Fish and Wildlife Service


50 CFR Part 20

Migratory Bird Hunting; Final Approval of Tungsten-Iron and Tungsten-
Polymer Shots and Temporary Approval of Tungsten-Matrix and Tin Shots 
as Nontoxic for Hunting Waterfowl and Coots; Proposed Rule

[[Page 32752]]


Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 20

RIN 1018-AF65

Migratory Bird Hunting; Final Approval of Tungsten-Iron and 
Tungsten-Polymer Shots and Temporary Approval of Tungsten-Matrix and 
Tin Shots as Nontoxic for Hunting Waterfowl and Coots

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Proposed rule.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service or we) proposes to 
grant final approval of tungsten-iron and tungsten-polymer shots as 
nontoxic for hunting waterfowl and coots. We also propose to grant 
temporary approval of tungsten-matrix and tin shots as nontoxic for 
hunting waterfowl and coots during the 1999-2000 hunting season only. 
Acute toxicity studies reveal no adverse effects over a 30-day period 
on mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) dosed with either tungsten-iron, 
tungsten-polymer, tungsten-matrix, or tin shot. Reproductive/chronic 
toxicity testing over a 150-day period indicated that tungsten-iron and 
tungsten-polymer administered to adult mallards did not adversely 
affect them or the offspring they produced. We will not consider final 
approval of tungsten-matrix and tin shots until all required 
reproductive/chronic toxicity tests are successfully completed and the 
results are received and approved by the Director. Tungsten-iron and 
tungsten-polymer shots are produced by Federal Cartridge Company 
(Federal) of Anoka, Minnesota. Tungsten-matrix shot is produced by Kent 
Cartridge Company (Kent) of Kearneysville, West Virginia. Tin shot is 
produced by the International Tin Research Institute (ITRI) of 
Uxbridge, Middlesex, Great Britain.

DATES: Comments on the proposed rule must be received no later than 
July 19, 1999.

ADDRESSES: Comments may be sent to the Chief, Office of Migratory Bird 
Management (MBMO), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 1849 C Street, NW., 
ms 634-ARLSQ, Washington, DC 20240. The public may inspect comments 
during normal business hours in room 634, Arlington Square Building, 
4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Arlington, Virginia.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jon Andrew, Chief, Office of Migratory 
Bird Management, (703) 358-1714.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Since the mid-1970s, we have sought to 
identify shot that does not pose a significant toxic hazard to 
migratory birds or other wildlife. Currently, only steel and bismuth-
tin shot are approved as nontoxic. We previously granted temporary 
approval for tungsten-iron shot during the 1997-98 (August 13, 1997; 62 
FR 43444) and 1998-99 (October 7, 1998; 63 FR 54016) migratory bird 
hunting seasons. We also granted temporary approval for tungsten-
polymer (October 7, 1998; 63 FR 54022) and tungsten-matrix (December 8, 
1998; 63 FR 67619) shots during the 1998-99 migratory bird hunting 
season. Compliance with the use of nontoxic shot has increased over the 
last few years. We believe that compliance will continue to increase 
with the approval and availability of other nontoxic shot types.
    Federal Cartridge Company's (Federal) tungsten-iron shot is an 
alloy of approximately 55 percent tungsten and 45 percent iron, by 
weight, and has a density of approximately 10.3 g/cm<SUP>3</SUP>. 
Tungsten-polymer shot is a matrix of Nylon 6 or 11 polymer surrounding 
particles of elemental tungsten. Shot made from this material has a 
density of approximately 11.2 g/cm<SUP>3</SUP> or approximately the 
density of lead. The shot will contain approximately 95.5 percent 
tungsten and 4.5 percent Nylon 6 or 11 by weight.
    Kent's original candidate shot was fabricated from what is 
described in their application as a mixture of powdered metals in a 
plastic matrix whose density is comparable to that of lead. All 
component metals are present as elements, not compounds. The tungsten-
matrix material from which pellets are formulated has a specific 
gravity of 9.8 g/cm<SUP>3</SUP> and is composed of 88 percent tungsten, 
4 percent nickel, 2 percent iron, 1 percent copper, and 5 percent 
polymers by mass. After consultation with us, Kent has subsequently 
changed the composition of their shot and removed nickel and copper. 
The new shot material being considered has a density of 10.7 g/
cm<SUP>3</SUP> and is composed of approximately 95.9 percent tungsten 
and 4.1 percent polymers.
    ITRI's candidate shot is made from commercially pure tin; no 
alloying or other alterations are intentionally made to the chemical 
composition of the shot. This shot material has a density of 
approximately 7.29 g/cm<SUP>3</SUP>, and is 99.9 percent tin, with a 
low level of iron pickup due to the steel production equipment.
    Each of Federal's applications for tungsten-iron and tungsten-
polymer include a description of the shot, a toxicological report (Barr 
1996), results of a 30-day dosing study of the toxicity of the shot in 
game-farm mallards (Bursian et al. 1996a, Bursian et al. 1996b), and 
results of a 150-day reproductive/chronic toxicity study (Bursian et 
al. 1999). Kent's application for tungsten-matrix includes a 
description of the shot, a toxicological report (Thomas 1997a), and 
results of a 30-day toxicity study (Wildlife International, Ltd. 
1998a). The tin shot application from ITRI contains a description of 
the shot, a toxicological report (Thomas 1997b), and results of a 30-
day toxicity study (Wildlife International, Ltd. 1998b). Toxicological 
reports for each shot type incorporates toxicity information (a 
synopsis of acute and chronic toxicity data for mammals and birds, 
potential for environmental concern, and toxicity to aquatic and 
terrestrial invertebrates, amphibians and reptiles) and information on 
environmental fate and transport (shot alteration, environmental half-
life, and environmental concentration).
    Toxicity Information: There is considerable difference in the 
toxicity of soluble and insoluble compounds of tungsten and iron. 
Elemental tungsten and iron are virtually insoluble and are therefore 
expected to be relatively nontoxic. Even though most toxicity tests 
reviewed were based on soluble tungsten compounds rather than elemental 
tungsten, there appears to be no basis for concern of toxicity to 
wildlife for either candidate shot via ingestion by fish or mammals 
(Bursian et al. 1996b, Gigiena 1983, Karantassis 1924, Patty 1982, 
Industrial Medicine 1946). Detailed reviews of the toxicological 
impacts of different tin compounds have been conducted by Eisler (1989) 
and Cooney (1988). Both reviews indicate that elemental tin is non-
toxic to animals. Tin shot designed for waterfowl hunting is utilized 
in several European countries and no reports exist that suggest that 
tin shot is causing toxicity problems for wildlife in those countries.
    The potential toxicity of nylon compounds due to degradation is 
primarily associated with the stabilizers, antioxidants, plasticizers, 
and unreacted prepolymers. Residual caprolactum has been found in some 
commercial Nylon 6 products, but little concern regarding this compound 
has been developed (Patty, 1982). The toxicity of Nylon 6 and 11 are 
negligible due to their insolubilities.
    Environmental Fate and Transport: Tungsten is insoluble in water 
and therefore not mobile in hypergenic environments. Tungsten is very 

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with acids and does not easily complex. Preferential uptake by plants 
in acid soil suggests uptake of tungsten in the anionic form associated 
with tungsten minerals rather than elemental tungsten (Kabata and 
Pendias 1984). Tin pellets will undergo slow surface oxidation to form 
hydrated tin oxide, which is extremely insoluble in water (Lide 1990). 
Therefore dissolution will be slow, and highly localized aqueous 
concentrations will not arise. This means that elemental tin will over 
time remain largely in the same inorganic form as when it is 
discharged. Tin pellets discharged into wetlands where sulphur ions are 
released during organic decomposition would become coated with tin 
sulphide, which is highly insoluble in water and resistant to aquatic 
hydrolysis (Hoiland 1995).
    Environmental Concentration: The effective environmental 
concentration (EEC) for a terrestrial ecosystem was calculated based on 
69,000 shot per hectare (Pain 1990), assuming complete erosion of 
material in 5 cm of soil. For tungsten-iron shot, the EEC for tungsten 
in soil was calculated at 32.9 mg/kg. For tungsten-polymer shot, the 
EECs for tungsten and Nylon (6 and 11) in soil are 58.3 mg/kg and 2.7 
mg/kg, respectively. The EECs for tungsten and the 2 polymers found in 
tungsten-matrix are 25.7 mg/kg, 4.2 mg/kg, and 0.14 mg/kg, 
respectively. The EEC for tin in soil is 19.3 g/m<SUP>3</SUP>.
    The environmental concentration (EEC) for an aquatic ecosystem was 
calculated assuming complete erosion of the shot in one cubic foot of 
water. For tungsten-iron shot, the EEC in water for tungsten was 10.5 
mg/L. For tungsten-polymer shot, the EECs in water for tungsten and 
Nylon (6 and 11) are 18.7 mg/L and 0.9 mg/L, respectively. The EECs in 
water for tungsten and the 2 polymers found in tungsten-matrix are 4.2 
mg/L, 0.2 mg/L, and 0.02 mg/L, respectively. The EEC in water for tin 
is 19.3 mg/L.
    Effects on Birds: An extensive literature review in each 
application provided information on the toxicity of elemental tungsten 
and tin to waterfowl and other birds. Ringelman et al. (1993) orally 
dosed 20 8-week-old game-farm mallards with 12-17 (1.03 g average 
weight) tungsten-bismuth-tin (TBT) pellets and monitored them for 32 
days for evidence of intoxication. No birds died during the trial, 
gross lesions were not observed during the postmortem examinations, 
histopathological examinations did not reveal any evidence of toxicity 
or tissue damage, and tungsten was not detectable in kidney or liver 
samples. The authors concluded that TBT shot presented virtually no 
potential for acute intoxication in mallards.
    Kraabel et al. (1996) assessed the effects of embedded TBT shot on 
mallards and concluded that TBT was not acutely toxic when implanted in 
muscle tissue. Inflammatory reactions to TBT shot were localized and 
had no detectable systemic effects on mallard health.
    Nell (1981) fed laying hens (Gallus domesticus) 0.4 or 1.0 g/kg 
tungsten in a commercial mash for five months to assess reproductive 
performance. Weekly egg production was normal and hatchability of 
fertile eggs was not affected. Exposure of chickens to large doses of 
tungsten either through injection or by feeding resulted in an 
increased tissue concentration of tungsten and a decreased 
concentration of molybdenum (Nell 1981). The loss of tungsten from the 
liver occurred in an exponential manner with a half-life of 27 hours. 
The alterations in molybdenum metabolism seemed to be associated with 
tungsten intake rather than molybdenum deficiency. Death due to 
tungsten occurred when tissue concentrations increased to 25 mg/g 
liver. At that concentration, xanthine dehydrogenase activity was zero.
    Ringelman et al. (1992) conducted a 32-day acute toxicity study 
which involved dosing game-farm mallards with a shot alloy of tungsten-
bismuth-tin (TBT), which was 39, 44.5 and 16.5 percent by weight, 
respectively. No dosed birds died during the trial, and behavior was 
normal. Examination of tissues post-euthanization revealed no toxicity 
or damage related to shot exposure. This study concluded that ``* * * 
TBT shot presents virtually no potential for acute intoxication in 
mallards under the conditions of this study.''
    Several studies have been conducted in which pellets made of tin or 
tin alloys have been placed inside the digestive tract or tissues of 
ducks to determine if toxic effects occur. Grandy et al. (1968) and the 
Huntingdon Research Centre (1987) conducted 30- and 28-day, 
respectively, acute toxicity tests on mallard ducks and reported that 
all treatment ducks survived with insignificant weight loss or 
development of pathological lesions. The potential for bismuth-tin (BT) 
shot to produce toxicological effects in ducks during reproduction has 
been investigated under both acute and chronic testing conditions. Tin 
as a 2% component of the tested shot, did not pose a toxic risk to 
ducks when fed a nutritionally-imbalanced, corn-based diet. Neither has 
BT shot been shown to pose an adverse risk to the health of ducks, the 
reproduction by male and female birds, nor the survival of ducklings 
over the long term (Sanderson et al. 1997a, b).
    Nylon 6 is the commercially important homopolymer of caprolactum. 
Most completely polymerized nylon materials are physiologically inert, 
regardless of the toxicity of the monomer from which they are made 
(Peterson 1977). Few data exist on the toxicity of Nylon 6 in animals. 
Most toxicity studies are related to thermal degradation products and 
so are not relevant to the exposure of wildlife to shot containing 
nylon. Montgomery (1982) reported that feeding Nylon 6 to rats at a 
level of 25 percent of the diet for 2 weeks caused a slower rate of 
weight gain, presumably due to a decrease in food consumption and feed 
efficiency. However, the rats suffered no anatomic injuries due to the 
consumption of nylon.
    The two plastic polymers used in tungsten-matrix shot act as a 
physical matrix in which the tungsten is distributed as ionically-bound 
fine particles. Most completely polymerized nylon materials are 
physiologically inert, regardless of the toxicity of the monomer from 
which they are made (Peterson 1977). A literature review did not reveal 
studies in which either of the two polymers were evaluated for toxicity 
in birds.
    Acute Toxicity Studies: Federal contracted with Michigan State 
University--Department of Animal Science, to conduct an acute toxicity 
study of tungsten-iron and tungsten-polymer. Both Kent and ITRI 
contracted with Wildlife International Ltd. to conduct an acute 
toxicity study of tungsten-matrix and tin shots, respectively. The 
acute toxicity test is a short-term (30-day) study where ducks are 
dosed with shot and fed commercially available duck food. Survival, 
body weight, blood hematocrit, and organ analysis are recorded.
    Tungsten-iron and tungsten-polymer: The 30-day dosing study 
revealed no adverse effects when mallards were dosed with either 8 BB 
size tungsten-iron shot or 8 BB size tungsten-polymer shot and 
monitored over a 30-day period (Bursian et al. 1996a, Bursian et al. 
1996b). Eight male and 8 female adult mallards were dosed with either 8 
No. 4 steel shot, 8 No. 4 lead shot, 8 BB size tungsten-iron shot, or 8 
BB size tungsten-polyer shot and observed over a 30-day period. An 
additional 8 males and 8 females received no shot. Fifty percent of the 
lead-dosed birds (5 males and 3 females) died during the 30-day test 
while there were no mortalities in

[[Page 32754]]

the other groups. Lead-dosed birds were the only ones to display green 
excreta, lethargy, and ataxia. Body weights were not significantly 
altered by any of the treatments, although lead-dosed birds which died 
during the trial lost an average of 30 percent of their body weight. 
Hematocrit, hemoglobin concentrations, and ALAD activity were 
significantly depressed at day 15 in the lead-dosed females, while 
lead-dosed males had significantly depressed hematocrit and hemoglobin 
concentration compared with the other four groups. There were no 
significant differences in these whole-blood parameters at day 30. 
Three tungsten-polymer-dosed males developed mild biliary stasis. The 
authors attributed this to the intubating of mallards with 8 BBs of 
tungsen-polymer shot inducing a pathological condition--however 
slight--that was not found in the control birds. No other 
histopathological lesions were found. Tungsten was detected in the 
femur of two tungsten-polymer-dosed females and the kidneys of two 
tungsten-polymer-dosed birds; in both tissues, concentrations were only 
slightly above detection limits. In general, no adverse effects were 
seen in mallards given 8 BB-size tungsten-polymer shot and monitored 
over a 30-day period.
    Tungsten-matrix: Kent's 30-day dosing study (Wildlife International 
Ltd. 1998a) included 4 treatment and 1 control group of game-farm 
mallards. Treatment groups were exposed to 1 of 3 different types of 
shot: 8 #4 steel, 8 #4 lead, or 8 #4 tungsten-matrix; whereas the 
control group received no shot. The 2 tungsten-matrix treatment groups 
(1 group deficient diet, 1 group balanced diet) each consisted of 16 
birds (8 males and 8 females); whereas remaining treatment and control 
groups consisted of 6 birds each (3 males and 3 females). All tungsten-
matrix-dosed birds survived the test and showed no overt signs of 
toxicity or treatment-related effects on body weight. There were no 
differences in hematocrit or hemoglobin concentration between the 
tungsten-matrix treatment group and either the steel shot or control 
groups. No histopathological lesions were found during gross necropsy. 
In general, no adverse effects were seen in mallards given 8 #4 size 
tungsten-matrix shot and monitored over a 30-day period. Tungsten was 
found to be below the limit of detection in all samples of femur, 
gonad, liver, and kidney from treatment groups.
    Tin: ITRI's 30-day dosing study (Wildlife International Ltd. 1998b) 
included 4 treatment and 1 control group of game-farm mallards. 
Treatment groups were exposed to 1 of 3 different types of shot: 8 #4 
steel, 8 #4 lead, or 8 #4 tin shot; whereas the control group received 
no shot. The 2 tin treatment groups (1 group deficient diet, 1 group 
balanced diet) each consisted of 16 birds (8 males and 8 females); 
whereas remaining treatment and control groups consisted of 6 birds 
each (3 males and 3 females). All tin-dosed birds survived the test and 
showed no overt signs of toxicity or treatment-related effects on body 
weight. There were no differences in hematocrit or hemoglobin 
concentration between the tin treatment group and either the steel shot 
or control groups. No histopathological lesions were found during gross 
necropsy. In general, no adverse effects were seen in mallards given 8 
#4 size tin shot and monitored over a 30-day period. No levels of tin 
above the limit of detection were observed in any tissues collected 
from either tin treatment group.
    Reproductive/chronic Toxicity Study: Federal contracted with 
Michigan State University--Department of Animal Science, to conduct an 
a reproductive/chronic toxicity studies for both tungsten-iron and 
tungsten-polymer shot types. The reproductive/chronic toxicity study is 
a long-term (150-day) study where ducks are dosed with shot and fed 
commercially available duck food. Survival, body weight, blood 
hematocrit, organ analysis, and reproductive performance are recorded.
    Tungsten-iron and Tungsten-polymer: The reproductive/chronic 
toxicity study revealed no adverse effects when mallards were dosed 
with either 8 No. 4 size tungsten-iron shot, or 8 No. 4 size tungsten-
polymer shot, and monitored over a 150-day period (Bursian et al. 
1999). Sixteen male and 16 female adult mallards were orally dosed with 
either 8 No. 4 steel shot, 8 No. 4 tungsten-iron shot, or 8 No. 4 
tungsten-polymer shot. An additional 6 male and 6 female mallards were 
dosed with 8 No. 4 lead shot. All lead-dosed birds died by day 25 of 
the study, whereas no mortalities occurred in the other test groups. 
Lead-dosed birds had significantly decreased hematocrit, hemoglobin 
concentration and whole-blood delta aminolevulinic dehydratase activity 
on day 7 of the study. Mallards dosed with tungsten-iron or tungsten-
polymer shot had occasional significant differences in hematocrit and 
plasma chemistry values when compared to steel-dosed mallards over the 
150-day period, but these changes were within the normal range reported 
for mallards and were not considered to be deleterious. Relative 
kidney, heart, brain and gizzard weights of lead-dosed birds were 
significantly greater in comparison to relative weights of those organs 
in the other 3 treatment groups. Marked liver hemosiderosis was present 
in all steel and tungsten-dosed males, in 5 of 8 steel- and 3 of 8 
tungsten-iron-dosed females, and in 1 tungsten-polymer-dosed male 
examined. Small amounts of tungsten were detected in gonad and kidney 
samples from males and females, in femur samples of males, and in liver 
samples from females dosed with tungsten-polymer shot. Higher 
concentrations of tungsten were detected in femur, gonad, kidney, and 
liver samples from tungsten-iron-dosed ducks. The rate of shot erosion 
was 99% for tungsten-polymer, 72% for tungsten-iron, 55% for steel, and 
37% for lead. There were no significant differences in percent egg 
production, and percent fertility and hatchability of eggs from 
tungsten-iron- and tungsten-polymer-dosed ducks when compared to steel-
dosed ducks. There were no biological differences in percent 
survivability and body weight of ducklings from tungsten-iron- or 
tungsten-polymer-dosed ducks when compared to ducklings from steel-
dosed ducks. The hematocrit of ducklings from tungsten-iron-dosed ducks 
was slightly but significantly lower when compared to ducklings from 
steel-dosed ducks. Histological examination of duckling kidneys and 
liver indicated no abnormalities. Tungsten was detected in 25%, 9%, and 
13% of the femur, kidneys, and liver samples, respectively, from 
ducklings of the tungsten-iron and tungsten-polymer groups. Overall, 
results of this study indicated that tungsten-iron and tungsten-polymer 
shot repeatedly administered to adult mallards did not adversely affect 
them or the offspring they produced during the 150-day trial.

Nontoxic Shot Approval

    The first condition for nontoxic shot approval is toxicity testing. 
Based on the results of the toxicological report and the toxicity tests 
(Tiers 1, 2, and 3) discussed above, we conclude that tungsten-iron and 
tungsten-polymer shot does not pose a significant danger to migratory 
birds or other wildlife and their habitats. Based on the results of 
toxicological reports and acute toxicity tests (Tier 1 and 2), we 
conclude that tungsten-matrix and tin shots do not appear to pose a 
significant danger to migratory birds or other wildlife and their 
habitats. However, final approval of either shot type will not be 
considered until all required reproductive/chronic toxicity tests have 
been successfully completed and our Director has reviewed and approved 
the results.

[[Page 32755]]

    The second condition for approval is testing for residual lead 
levels. Any shot with lead levels equal to or exceeding 1 percent will 
be considered toxic and, therefore, illegal. We have determined that 
the maximum environmentally acceptable level of lead in any nontoxic 
shot is trace amounts of <1 percent, and incorporated this requirement 
in the nontoxic shot approval process that was published on December 1, 
1997 (62 FR 63608). Federal has documented that tungsten-iron and 
tungsten-polymer shots meet this requirement. Kent and ITRI have 
documented that tungsten-matrix and tin shot, respectively, meet this 
    The third condition for approval involves enforcement. In the 
August 18, 1995, Federal Register (60 FR 43314), we indicated that 
approval of any nontoxic shot would be contingent upon the development 
and availability of a noninvasive field testing device. This 
requirement was incorporated in the nontoxic shot approval process that 
was published on December 1, 1997 (62 FR 63608). Tungsten-iron 
shotshells can be drawn to a magnet as a simple field detection method. 
Electronic field testing devices can distinguish shells containing 
tungsten-polymer and tungsten-matrix from shells containing lead. At 
the present time, we are not aware of any noninvasive field testing 
devices for distinguishing shells containing tin shot from those 
containing lead. We will not consider final approval of tin shot until 
such a device, or other noninvasive field testing method, has been 
developed for identifying tin shot.
    This proposed rule would amend 50 CFR 20.21(j) by approving 
tungsten-iron and tungsten-polymer shots as nontoxic for migratory bird 
hunting. It is based on the toxicological reports, acute toxicity 
studies, and reproductive/chronic toxicity studies submitted by 
Federal. Results of these studies indicate the absence of any 
deleterious effects of tungsten-iron or tungsten-polymer shot when 
ingested by captive-reared mallards or to the ecosystem. We also 
propose to grant temporary approval to tungsten-matrix and tin shots 
for the 1999-2000 hunting season only. Temporary approval would be 
based on the toxicological reports and acute toxicity studies submitted 
by Kent and ITRI. We have reduced the public comment period from 60 
days to 30 days in order to complete the rulemaking process prior to 
the start of the hunting season. This will facilitate planning efforts 
by vendors and State wildlife agencies.


Barr Engineering Company. 1996. Toxicology Report on New Shot.
Bursian, S.J., M.E. Kelly, R.J. Aulerich, D.C. Powell, and S. 
Fitzgerald. 1996a. Thirty-day dosing test to assess the toxicity of 
tungsten-iron shot in game-farm mallards. Report to Federal 
Cartridge Co. 77 pp.
Bursian, S.J., M.E. Kelly, R.J. Aulerich, D.C. Powell, and S. 
Fitzgerald. 1996b. Thirty-day dosing test to assess the toxicity of 
tungsten-polymer shot in game-farm mallards. Report to Federal 
Cartridge Co. 71 pp.
Bursian, S.J., R.M. Mitchell, R.J. Tempelman, R.J. Aulerich, and 
S.D. Fitzgerald. 1999. Chronic dosing study to assess the health and 
reproductive effects of tungsten-iron and tungsten-polymer shot on 
game-farm mallards. Report to Federal Cartridge Co. 115 pp.
Cooney, J.J. 1988. Microbial transformations of tin and tin 
compounds. J. Industr. Microbiol. 3:195-204.
Eisler, R. 1989. Tin hazards to fish, wildlife, and invertebrates: a 
synoptic review. Biological Rep. 85 (1.15). Contaminant Hazard 
Reviews Report No. 15. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Dept. 
Interior. Washington, D.C. 85 pp.
Gigiema I. Sanitariya. 1977. Mezhdunarodnaya Kniga. Moscow, USSR. 
Gigiema I. Sanitariya. 1983. Mezhdunarodnaya Kniga. Moscow, USSR. 
Grandy, J.W., L.N. Locke, and G.E. Bagley. 1968. Relative toxicity 
of lead and five proposed substitute shot types to pen-reared 
mallards. J. Wildl. Manage. 32(3):483-488.
Hoiland, K. 1995. Reaction of some decomposer basidiomycetes to 
toxic elements. Nordic J. Bot. 15:305-318.
Huntingdon Research Centre Ltd. 1987. The effects of dosing mallard 
ducks with Safe Shot. Huntingdon, Cambridge, U.K. Report dated Dec. 
19, 1987. 15pp.
Industrial Medicine. 1946. 15:482.
Interagency Ecosystem Management Task Force. 1995. The Ecosystem 
Approach: Healthy Ecosystems and Sustainable Economics. Volume II--
Implementation Issues.
Kabata-Pendias, A. and H. Pendias. 1984. Trace elements in soil and 
plants. CRC Press, Inc. Boca Raton, FL.
Karantassis, T. 1924. On the toxicity of compounds of tungsten and 
molybdenum. Ann. Med. 28:1541-1543.
Kraabel, F.W., M.W. Miller, D.M. Getzy, and J.K. Ringleman. 1996. 
Effects of embedded tungsten-bismuth-tin shot and steel shot on 
mallards. J. Wildl. Dis. 38(1):1-8.
Lide, D.R. 1990. CRC--Handbook of Chemistry and Physics. 71st 
Edition, 1990-1991. CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida.
Montgomery, R.R. 1982. Polymers. In Patty's Industrial Hygiene and 
Toxicology, Vol. IIIA (G.D. Clayton and F.E. Clayton, Eds.) pp. 
4209-4526. John Wiley and Sons, NY.
Nell, J.A., E.F. Annison, and D. Balnave. 1981. The influence of 
tungsten on the molybdenum status of poultry. Br. Poult. Sci. 
Pain, D.J. 1990. Lead shot ingestion by waterbirds in the Carmarque, 
France: an investigation of levels and interspecific difference. 
Environ. Pollut. 66:273-285.
Patty's Industrial Hygiene and Toxicology. 1982. Wiley Interscience. 
Wiley & Sons, Inc. NY, NY. Third Ed.
Peterson, J.E. 1977. Industrial Health. Prentice-Hall, Englewood 
Cliffs, NJ.
Ringelman, J.K., M.W. Miller, and W.F. Andelt. 1992. Effects of 
ingested tungsten-bismuth-tin shot on mallards. CO Div. Wildl., Fort 
Collins, 24 pp.
Ringelman, J.K., M.W. Miller, and W.F. Andelt. 1993. Effects of 
ingested tungsten-bismuth-tin shot on captive mallards. J. Wildl. 
Manage. 57:725-732.
Sanderson, G.C., W.L. Anderson, G.L. Foley, L.M. Skowron, J.D. 
Brawn, and J.W. Seets. 1997a. Acute toxicity of ingested bismuth 
alloy shot in game farm mallards. Illinois Nat. History Survey Bull. 
Sanderson, G.C., W.L. Anderson, G.L. Foley, K.L. Duncan, L.M. 
Skowron, J.D. Brawn, and J.W. Seets. 1997b. Toxicity of ingested 
bismuth alloy shot in game farm mallards: chronic health effects and 
effects on reproduction. Illinois Nat. History Survey Bull. 35:217-
Thomas, V.G. 1997a. Application for approval of tungsten-matrix shot 
as non-toxic for the hunting of migratory birds. 39 pp.
Thomas, V.G. 1997b. Application for approval of tin shot as non-
toxic for the hunting of migratory birds. 26 pp.
Wildlife International, Ltd. 1998a. Tungsten-matrix shot: An oral 
toxicity study with the mallard. Project No. 475-101. 162 pp.
Wildlife International, Ltd. 1998b. Tin shot: An oral toxicity study 
with the mallard. Project No. 476-101. 158 pp.

NEPA Consideration

    In compliance with the requirements of section 102(2)(C) of the 
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4332(C)), and the 
Council on Environmental Quality's regulation for implementing NEPA (40 
CFR 1500-1508), we prepared draft Environmental Assessments (EA) in 
May, 1999. The EAs are available to the public at the location 
indicated under the ADDRESSES caption.

Endangered Species Act Considerations

    Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1972, as amended 
(16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), provides that Federal agencies shall ``insure 
that any action authorized, funded or carried out * * * is not likely 
to jeopardize the continued existence of any endangered species or 
threatened species or result in the destruction or adverse modification 
of (critical) habitat * * *'' We are completing a Section 7 
consultation under the ESA for this proposed rule. The result of our 
consultation under Section 7 of the ESA will be available to the public 
at the location indicated under the ADDRESSES caption.

[[Page 32756]]

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) 
requires the preparation of flexibility analyses for rules that will 
have a significant effect on a substantial number of small entities, 
which includes small businesses, organizations or governmental 
jurisdictions. This rule would approve additional types of nontoxic 
shot that may be sold and used to hunt migratory birds; this rule would 
provide 4 types of shot in addition to the existing 2 that are 
approved. We have determined, however, that this rule will have no 
effect on small entities since the approved shot merely will supplement 
nontoxic shot already in commerce and available throughout the retail 
and wholesale distribution systems. We anticipate no dislocation or 
other local effects, with regard to hunters and others. This rule was 
not subject to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) review under 
Executive Order 12866.

Executive Order 12866

    This rule is not subject to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) 
review under Executive Order 12866. E.O. 12866 requires each agency to 
write regulations that are easy to understand. We invite comments on 
how to make this rule easier to understand, including answers to 
questions such as the following: (1) Are the requirements in the rule 
clearly stated? (2) Does the rule contain technical language or jargon 
that interferes with its clarity? (3) Does the format of the rule 
(grouping and order of sections, use of headings, paragraphing, etc.) 
aid or reduce its clarity? (4) Would the rule be easier to understand 
if it were divided into more (but shorter) sections? (5) Is the 
description of the rule in the ``Supplementary Information'' section of 
the preamble helpful in understanding the rule? What else could we do 
to make the rule easier to understand? Section 20.21 may be written in 
plain language format in the final rule.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required 
to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a 
currently valid OMB control number. We have examined this regulation 
under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501) and found it 
to contain no information collection requirements. However, we do have 
OMB approval (1018-0067; expires 06/30/2000) for information collection 
relating to what manufacturers of shot are required to provide to us 
for the nontoxic shot approval process. For further information see 50 
CFR 20.134.

Unfunded Mandates Reform

    We have determined and certify pursuant to the Unfunded Mandates 
Act, 2 U.S.C. 1502, et seq., that this rulemaking will not impose a 
cost of $100 million or more in any given year on local or State 
government or private entities.

Civil Justice Reform--Executive Order 12988

    We, in promulgating this rule, have determined that these 
regulations meet the applicable standards provided in Sections 3(a) and 
3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988.

Takings Implication Assessment

    In accordance with Executive Order 12630, these rules, authorized 
by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, do not have significant takings 
implications and do not affect any constitutionally protected property 
rights. These rules will not result in the physical occupancy of 
property, the physical invasion of property, or the regulatory taking 
of any property. In fact, these rules allow hunters to exercise 
privileges that would be otherwise unavailable; and, therefore, reduce 
restrictions on the use of private and public property.

Federalism Effects

    Due to the migratory nature of certain species of birds, the 
Federal government has been given responsibility over these species by 
the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. These rules do not have a substantial 
direct effect on fiscal capacity, change the roles or responsibilities 
of Federal or State governments, or intrude on State policy or 
administration. Therefore, in accordance with Executive Order 12612, 
these regulations do not have significant federalism effects and do not 
have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a 
Federalism Assessment.

Government-to-Government Relationship With Tribes

    In accordance with the President's memorandum of April 29, 1994, 
``Government-to-Government Relations with Native American tribal 
Governments'' (59 FR 22951) and 512 DM 2, we have evaluated possible 
effects on Federally recognized Indian tribes and have determined that 
there are no effects.


    The primary author of this proposed rule is James R. Kelley, Jr., 
Office of Migratory Bird Management.

List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 20

    Exports, Hunting, Imports, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements, Transportation, Wildlife.

    Accordingly, we propose to amend part 20, subchapter B, chapter 1 
of Title 50 of the Code of Federal Regulations as follows:


    1. The authority citation for part 20 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 703-712 and 16 U.S.C. 742 a-j.

    2. Section 20.21 is amended by revising the section title, revising 
paragraph (j) introductory text, revising paragraphs (j)(2) and (j)(3), 
and removing paragraph (j)(4) to read as follows:

20.21  What hunting methods are illegal?

* * * * *
    (j) While possessing shot (either in shotshells or as loose shot 
for muzzleloading) other than steel shot, or bismuth-tin (97 parts 
bismuth: 3 parts tin with <1 percent residual lead) shot, or tungsten-
iron (55 parts tungsten: 45 parts iron with <1 percent residual lead) 
shot, or tungsten-polymer (95.5 parts tungsten: 4.5 parts Nylon 6 or 11 
with <1 percent residual lead) shot, or tungsten-matrix (95.9 parts 
tungsten: 4.1 parts polymer with <1 percent residual lead) shot, or tin 
(99.9 percent tin with <1 percent residual lead) shot, or such shot 
approved as nontoxic by the Director pursuant to procedures set forth 
in Sec. 20.134, provided that:
    (1) * * *
    (2) Tungsten-matrix shot (95.9 parts tungsten: 4.1 parts polymer 
with <1 percent residual lead) is legal as nontoxic shot for waterfowl 
and coot hunting for the 1999-2000 hunting season only, and
    (3) Tin shot (99.9 percent tin with <1 percent residual lead) is 
legal as nontoxic shot for waterfowl and coot hunting for the 1999-2000 
hunting season only.

    Dated: June 8, 1999.
Stephen C. Saunders,
Acting Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks.
[FR Doc. 99-15339 Filed 6-16-99; 8:45 am]