[Federal Register: September 5, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 172)]
[Proposed Rules]               
[Page 53691]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 17

RIN 1018-AF31

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Reopening of 
Comment Period on Proposed Threatened Status for the Plant Yermo 

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Proposed rule; notice of reopening of comment period.


SUMMARY: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), pursuant to the 
Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act), reopen the comment 
period on the proposal to list the plant Yermo xanthocephalus (Desert 
yellowhead) as a threatened species. The comment period is extended to 
accommodate the public notice requirement of the Act and to consider 
any new scientific information. In addition, reopening of the comment 
period will allow further opportunity for all interested parties to 
submit comments on the proposal, which was published on December 22, 
1998, and allow for comments on the draft conservation agreement, 
assessment, and strategy (draft agreement) submitted by the Bureau of 
Land Management for our consideration when making this listing 
decision. We are seeking comments or suggestions from the public, other 
concerned governmental agencies, the scientific community, industry, or 
any other interested parties concerning the proposed rule and the draft 
agreement as it affects the Service's listing decision. Comments 
already submitted on the proposed rule need not be resubmitted as they 
will be fully considered in the final determination.

DATES: The reopened comment period closes October 5, 2000.

ADDRESSES: Copies of the proposed rule are available on the World Wide 
Web at mountain-prairie.fws.gov/endspp/plants/>. You also may request 
copies from, and submit comments and materials concerning this proposed 
rule to, the Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4000 
Airport Parkway, Cheyenne, Wyoming 82001. Copies of the draft agreement 
may also be obtained from the above address. Comments and materials 
received will be available for public inspection, by appointment, 
during normal business hours at the above address.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mike Long, Field Supervisor, Wyoming 
Field Office (see ADDRESSES section), telephone 307/772-2374; facsimile 



    On December 22, 1998, we published a rule proposing threatened 
status for Yermo xanthocephalus in the Federal Register (63 FR 70745). 
The original comment period closed on February 22, 1999. Section 
4(b)(5)(D) of the Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) requires us to ``publish 
a summary of the proposed regulation in a newspaper of general 
circulation in each area of the United States in which the species is 
believed to occur.'' Due to an oversight, we failed to complete this 
requirement. To correct the oversight, we are reopening the comment 
period for this proposal to list Y. xanthocephalus and publishing the 
required notices. Additionally, the Bureau of Land Management has asked 
us to consider its March 2000 draft agreement, regarding Y. 
xanthocephalus prior to making the final listing decision. The reopened 
comment period will allow for comments regarding the draft agreement as 
it affects the Service's listing decision. The comment period now 
closes on October 5, 2000. Written comments should be submitted to the 
Service (see ADDRESSES section).
    Yermo xanthocephalus is a recently described Wyoming endemic known 
only from the south end of Cedar Rim on the summit of Beaver Rim in 
southern Fremont County. It is a tap-rooted, hairless perennial herb 
with leafy stems up to 30 centimeters high (12 inches). Y. 
xanthocephalus is restricted to shallow deflation hollows in outcrops 
of Miocene sandstones of the Split Rock Formation. It is known from a 
single population occupying an area of less than 2 hectares (5 acres) 
of suitable habitat. In 1998 this population contained an estimated 
15,000 plants and existed entirely on Federal lands. Surface 
disturbances associated with oil and gas development, compaction by 
vehicles, trampling by livestock , and randomly occurring catastrophic 
events threaten the existing population.
    Comments from the public regarding the accuracy of this proposed 
rule are sought, especially regarding:
    (1) Biological, commercial trade, or other relevant data concerning 
any threat (or lack thereof) to this species;
    (2) The location of any additional populations of this species and 
the reasons why any habitat should or should not be determined to be 
critical habitat pursuant to section 4 of the Act;
    (3) Additional information concerning the range, distribution, and 
population size or trend of this species;
    (4) Current or planned activities in the subject area and their 
possible impacts on this species;
    (5) Biological or physical elements that best describe Yermo 
xanthocephalus habitat that could be essential for the conservation of 
the species;
    (6) Possible alternative noxious weed control, grazing, and oil and 
gas development practices that will reduce or eliminate impacts to 
Yermo xanthocephalus; 
    (7) Other management strategies that will conserve the species 
throughout its range; and
    (8) The adequacy of the Bureau of Land Management's draft 
conservation agreement as it affects threats to the species.
    Comments previously submitted during the first comment period need 
not be resubmitted, as they will be fully considered in the final 


    The primary author of this document is Mary Jennings of the Wyoming 
Field Office (see ADDRESSES section).


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

    Dated: August 21, 2000.
Jamie Rappaport Clark,
Director, Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 00-22555 Filed 9-1-00; 8:45 am]