[Federal Register: October 17, 2001 (Volume 66, Number 201)]
[Page 52777]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

[[Page 52777]]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Availability of a Draft Environmental Assessment and Receipt of 
Application for an Incidental Take Permit for Pinery Glen, Douglas 
County, CO

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability and receipt of application.


SUMMARY: This notice advises the public that Continental Homes 
(Applicant) has applied to the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) for 
an Incidental Take Permit (ITP) pursuant to section 10(a)(1)(B) of the 
Endangered Species Act of 1973 as amended (Act). The Service proposes 
to issue a 10-year permit to the Applicant that would authorize the 
incidental take of Preble's meadow jumping mouse (Preble's) (Zapus 
hudsonius preblei), federally listed as threatened, and loss and 
modification of its habitat associated with construction of a 
residential subdivision in Douglas County, Colorado. Construction of 
the subdivision has resulted in the loss of approximately 18.79 acres 
and will result in future loss of up to 2.86 acres of upland field that 
provides potential foraging and hibernation habitat for Preble's. The 
permit application includes a combined Environmental Assessment/Habitat 
Conservation Plan (Plan), which is available for public review and 
comment. The Plan fully describes the proposed project and the measures 
the Applicant will undertake to minimize and mitigate project impacts 
to Preble's.
    The Service requests comments on the Plan for the proposed issuance 
of an ITP. We provide this notice pursuant to section 10(a) of the Act 
and National Environmental Policy Act regulations (40 CFR 1506.6). All 
comments on the Plan and permit application will become part of the 
administrative record and will be available to the public.

DATES: Written comments on the permit application and Plan should be 
received on or before December 17, 2001.

ADDRESSES: Comments regarding the permit application or the Plan should 
be addressed to LeRoy Carlson, Field Supervisor, Fish and Wildlife 
Service, Colorado Field Office, 755 Parfet Street, Suite 361, Lakewood, 
Colorado 80215. Comments may be sent by facsimile to (303) 275-2371.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, CONTACT: Kathleen Linder, Fish and Wildlife 
Biologist, Colorado Field Office, telephone (303) 275-2370.


Document Availability

    Individuals wishing copies of the Plan and associated documents for 
review should immediately contact the above office. Documents also will 
be available for public inspection, by appointment, during normal 
business hours at the above address.


    Section 9 of the Act and Federal regulation prohibits the ``take'' 
of a species listed as endangered or threatened, respectively (take is 
defined under the Act as to harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, 
kill, trap, capture or collect, or to attempt to engage in any such 
conduct). However, the Service may issue permits to authorize 
``incidental take'' (defined by the Act as take that is incidental to, 
and not the purpose of, the carrying out of an otherwise lawful 
activity) of listed species under limited circumstances. Regulations 
governing permits for threatened species are promulgated in 50 CFR 
17.32; regulations governing permits for endangered species are 
promulgated in 50 CFR 17.22.
    The proposed action is the issuance of a permit under section 
10(a)(1)(B) of the Act to allow the incidental take of Preble's during 
the construction of a residential subdivision at the site. The project 
has directly affected approximately 18.79 acres and proposes to affect 
an additional 2.86 acres of potential habitat for Preble's. A Plan has 
been developed as part of the preferred alternative. The proposed Plan 
will allow for the incidental take of Preble's by permitting the 
construction of the residential subdivision in areas that Preble's use 
as foraging or hibernation habitat. Construction will result in 
approximately 8.75 acres of permanent habitat loss and approximately 
12.9 acres of temporary impact to the habitat associated with localized 
    The Preble's is the only federally listed species that occurs on 
site and has the potential to be directly affected by the proposed 
project. The Applicant has agreed to implement the following measures 
to minimize and mitigate impacts that may result from incidental take 
of Preble's:
    1. Restore 13.76 acres of upland field adjacent to the intermediate 
terrace along Cherry Creek. Restoration will include fertilizer 
application, native grass seeding, and native tree and shrub planting.
    2. Establish five stormwater detention basins adjacent to the 
intermediate terraces along Cherry Creek within the 13.76 acres being 
restored. These basins will include the combination of wetland/upland 
herbaceous plants and lush grasses with riparian shrubs to create 
additional mouse habitat. These basins are expected to exhibit seasonal 
inundation and to function as emergent wetlands with temporary open 
water during times of high precipitation and runoff.
    3. Enhance 46.9 acres of upper, intermediate, and lower terraces 
adjacent to Cherry Creek. Enhancement will include leafy spurge control 
through herbicide, mowing, and biological control, as necessary. Areas 
treated for leafy spurge will receive fertilizer application, native 
grass seeding, and native tree and shrub planting. The remaining areas 
will be enhanced by planting native trees and shrubs selected for 
appropriate moisture regimes, depending on proximity to Cherry Creek.
    4. Enhance an additional 15 acres of upland field adjacent to 
Cherry Creek. The Applicant will use 5 acres as back-up mitigation to 
meet the 46.9 acres of total enhancement. An additional 10 acres will 
be enhanced for Douglas County to be held as a Preble's habitat 
mitigation bank for future county needs. These additional 15 acres will 
be enhanced as described in subsection 3 above.
    This notice is provided pursuant to section 10(c) of the Act. The 
Service will evaluate the permit application, the Plan, and comments 
submitted therein to determine whether the application meets the 
requirements of section 10(a) of the Act. If it is determined that 
those requirements are met, a permit will be issued for the incidental 
take of Preble's. The final permit decision will be made no sooner than 
60 days from the date of this notice.

    Dated: October 1, 2001.
John A. Blankenship,
Deputy Regional Director, Denver, Colorado.
[FR Doc. 01-26078 Filed 10-16-01; 8:45 am]