[Federal Register: July 31, 2001 (Volume 66, Number 147)]
[Page 39525]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Notice of Intent To Acquire Additional Habitat for Hobe Sound 
National Wildlife Refuge in St. Lucie and Martin Counties, FL

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior.

ACTION: Notice of intent to acquire additional habitat for Hobe Sound 
National Wildlife Refuge.


SUMMARY: This notice advises the public that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, Southeast Region, has prepared a Decision Report that proposes 
to acquire approximately 149 acres of additional wildlife habitat for 
Hobe Sound National Wildlife Refuge in St. Lucie and Martin Counties, 
along the southeastern Atlantic coast in Florida. The purpose of the 
project is to protect and manage additional beachfront and upland sand 
pine-scrub habitats for the benefit of many species of wildlife, 
including federally listed threatened species such as the wood stork, 
Florida scrub jay, piping plover, loggerhead sea turtle, eastern indigo 
snake, and four-petal pawpaw, as well as federally listed endangered 
species including the leatherback and green sea turtles and Lakela's 
mint. Other species of wildlife native to the south Florida area would 
also benefit from the proposed refuge additions.
    A Decision Report was prepared for this project because it is 
categorically excluded from the requirement of preparing an 
environmental assessment or environmental impact statement in 
accordance with the provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act 
(NEPA). This categorical exclusion is based on the small size of the 
proposed refuge additions (149 acres), the general public support of 
the project, and the willingness of the affected landowners to sell or 
transfer their lands to the Service for inclusion as part of Hobe Sound 
National Wildlife Refuge.

DATES: The Decision Report was approved by the Director of the Fish and 
Wildlife Service on July 4, 2001.

ADDRESSES: The Decision Report is available for public inspection at 
the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Southeast Regional Office, Land 
Acquisition Planning Branch, 1875 Century Boulevard, Atlanta, Georgia 
30345. Written requests for copies of the Decision Report should be 
sent to Mr. Charles Danner, Team Leader, at the same address. Mr. 
Danner can also be contacted by telephone at 1-800-419-9582.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The proposal refuge additions are located in 
St. Lucie and Martin Counties, Florida, and consist of four separate 
areas near the refuge. Area 1 (4 acres) and Area 2 (65 acres) are 
adjacent to the refuge. Area 3 (70 acres) is located on Hutchinson 
Island about 20 miles north of the refuge. Area 4 (10 acres) is located 
about 45 miles north of the refuge near Vero Beach. These four areas 
total approximately 149 acres. The Service is proposing to acquire 
these lands through a combination of fee title purchases from willing 
sellers and leases, conservation easements, or cooperative agreements 
from willing landowners.
    The primary objective of acquiring the project lands is to protect 
and maintain some of the most productive nesting habitats of the 
endangered leatherback and green sea turtles and threatened loggerhead 
sea turtle, as well as habitat for a number of other endangered and 
threatened species including the wood stork, Florida scrub jay, piping 
plover, eastern indigo snake, four-petal pawpaw, and Lakela's mint.

    Dated: July 4, 2001.
Marshall P. Jones, Jr.,
Acting Director, Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 01-19053 Filed 7-30-01; 8:45 am]