[Federal Register: May 10, 2001 (Volume 66, Number 91)]
[Page 23947-23948]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Notice of Permit Application and Safe Harbor Agreement Between 
the Fish and Wildlife Service and Caroline H. Paterson and Thomas W. 

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability and 30-day public comment period.


SUMMARY: Caroline H. and Thomas W. Paterson (Applicants) have applied 
to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) for an incidental take 
permit pursuant to Section 10(a)(1)(A) of the Endangered Species Act 
(Act). The Applicants have been assigned permit number TE-035920-0. The 
requested permit, which is for a period of 30 years, would authorize 
the take of the following species: endangered southwestern willow 
flycatcher and Mexican gray wolf; threatened bald eagle, Mexican 
spotted owl, and loach minnow. The proposed take could occur as a 
result of conservation measures implemented on Spur Ranch, consisting 
of riparian restoration activities along Centerfire Creek, including 
planting native vegetation; grade control structures in Centerfire 
Creek to control erosion and downcutting; and upland management 
activities designed to improve overall habitat health, including 
prescribed burning, selective timber harvesting, and controlled 
grazing. Currently, none of the species mentioned above are known to 
occur on the property. The Applicants in cooperation with the Service 
have prepared the Safe Harbor Agreement (SHA) to provide a conservation 
benefit to the species and allow for the take of these species. Based 
upon guidance in the Service's June 17, 1999, Final Safe Harbor Policy, 
if a SHA and associated permit are not expected to individually or 
cumulatively have a significant impact on the quality of the human 
environment or other natural resources, the Agreement/permit may be 
categorically excluded from undergoing National Environmental Policy 
Act review. The Spur Ranch SHA qualifies as a ``Low Effect'' SHA, thus, 
this action is a categorical exclusion. The ``Low Effect'' 
determination for the Spur

[[Page 23948]]

Ranch SHA is also available for public comment. This notice is provided 
pursuant to Section 10(c) of the Act and National Environmental Policy 
Act regulations (40 CFR 1506.6).

DATES: Written comments on the application should be received on or 
before June 11, 2001.

ADDRESSES: Persons wishing to review the application, SHA, and ``Low 
Effect'' determination may obtain copies by writing to the Regional 
Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, P.O. Box 1306, Room 4102, 
Albuquerque, New Mexico 87103, or by contacting Denise Smith, New 
Mexico Ecological Services Field Office, 2105 Osuna Road, Albuquerque, 
New Mexico 87113 (505/346-2525). Documents relating to the application 
will be available for public inspection by written request, by 
appointment only, during normal business hours (8:00 to 4:30) at the 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, New Mexico Ecological Services Field 
Office, Albuquerque, New Mexico.
    Written data or comments concerning the application and SHA should 
be submitted to the Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 
New Mexico Ecological Services Field Office, Albuquerque, New Mexico, 
at the above address. Please refer to permit number TE-035920-0 
(Paterson) when submitting comments.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Denise Smith at the above U.S. Fish 
and Wildlife Service, New Mexico Ecological Services Field Office, 
Albuquerque, New Mexico (505) 346-2525.



    Caroline H. and Thomas W. Paterson (Applicants) plan to implement 
conservation measures on Spur Ranch, a 309 acre parcel of land 
northeast of Luna, Catron County, New Mexico. The conservation measures 
will improve riverine, riparian, and upland habitat through improving 
water quality, reducing sedimentation, and establishment of native 
riparian vegetation. The SHA as currently written is expected to 
provide a net conservation benefit to the five species for which it is 
written. The SHA will provide protection to the Applicants against 
further regulation under the Endangered Species Act in the event that 
any of the covered species should occupy the Patersons' land as a 
result of implementation of the proposed conservation measures.
    Section 9 of the Act prohibits the ``taking'' of threatened or 
endangered species. However, the Service, under limited circumstances, 
may issue permits to take threatened and endangered wildlife species 
incidental to, and not the purpose of, otherwise lawful activities. 
Regulations governing permits for endangered species are at 50 CFR 
17.22 and 50 CFR 17.22 for threatened species.

Thomas L. Bauer,
Acting Regional Director, Region 2, Albuquerque, New Mexico.
[FR Doc. 01-11756 Filed 5-9-01; 8:45 am]