[Federal Register: November 15, 2001 (Volume 66, Number 221)]
[Proposed Rules]               
[Page 57525-57558]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

[[Page 57525]]


Part III

Department of the Interior


Fish and Wildlife Service


50 CFR Part 17

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Proposed Designation of 
Critical Habitat for Holocarpha macradenia; (Santa Cruz Tarplant); 
Proposed Rule

[[Page 57526]]



Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 17

RIN 1018-AG73

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Proposed 
Designation of Critical Habitat for Holocarpha macradenia (Santa Cruz 

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Proposed rule.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), propose to 
designate critical habitat pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 
1973, as amended (Act), for Holocarpha macradenia (Santa Cruz 
tarplant). Approximately 1,360 hectares (3,360 acres) in Contra Costa, 
Santa Cruz, and Monterey Counties, California, are proposed for 
designation of critical habitat. Critical habitat receives protection 
from destruction or adverse modification through required consultation 
under section 7 of the Act with regard to actions carried out, funded, 
or authorized by a Federal agency. Section 4 of the Act requires us to 
consider economic and other relevant impacts when specifying any 
particular area as critical habitat.
    We solicit data and comments from the public on all aspects of this 
proposal, including data on economic and other impacts of the 
designation and our approaches for handling any future habitat 
conservation plans. We may revise this proposal prior to final 
designation to incorporate or address new information received during 
the comment period.

DATES: We will accept comments until January 14, 2002. Public hearing 
requests must be received by December 31, 2001.

ADDRESSES: Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, 2493 Portola Road, Suite B, Ventura, CA 93003.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Connie Rutherford, Ventura Fish and 
Wildlife Office, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, telephone 805/644-
1766; facsimile 805/644-3958.



    Holocarpha macradenia (Santa Cruz tarplant) is an aromatic annual 
herb in the aster family (Asteraceae) that is restricted to coastal 
terrace prairie habitat along the coast of central California. 
Holocarpha macradenia is one of only four species of the genus 
Holocarpha. All four are geographically restricted to California. The 
plant is rigid with lateral branches that grow to the height of the 
main stem, which is 10 to 50 centimeters (cm) (4 to 20 inches (in)) 
tall. The lower leaves are broadly linear and up to 12 cm (5 in) long; 
the upper leaves are smaller, with rolled back margins, and are 
truncated by a distinctive craterform (open pitted) gland. The yellow 
daisy-like flower head is surrounded from beneath by individual bracts 
(small leaf-like structure associated with flower head) that have about 
25 stout gland-tipped projections (Keil 1993). H. macradenia is 
distinguished from other members of the genus by its numerous ray 
flowers and black anthers.
    Holocarpha macradenia, like other closely related tarplants in the 
genus Deinandra, is self-incompatible, meaning that individuals will 
not produce viable seeds without cross pollinating with other 
individuals (B. Baldwin, in litt. 2001). Gene flow from individual to 
individual and from population to population increases the likelihood 
of viability through the maintenance of genetic diversity; therefore 
gene flow is important for the long-term survival of self-incompatible 
species (Ellstrand 1992). Gene flow often occurs through pollen 
movement between populations, and likely occurs over short distances 
because most of the native insects thought to pollinate H. macradenia 
generally travel less than 0.5 kilometers (km) (0.3 miles (mi)) at one 
time. Because clusters of small populations of H. macradenia may 
facilitate greater gene flow, even the conservation of small 
occurrences may be critical to maintaining genetic diversity in this 
species. Native bees, bee flies, and wasps have been observed visiting 
H. macradenia flowers (Sue Bainbridge, Jepson Herbarium, University of 
California, Berkeley, pers. comm. 2001).
    Seed production in Holocarpha macradenia is highly variable. A 
large, multi-branched individual may produce 25 seed heads with up to 
15 seeds per head, while individuals growing in crowded conditions may 
be unbranched and produce only one seed head (S. Bainbridge, pers. 
comm. 2001). Floral heads produce two kinds of achenes (seeds), disc 
and ray. The disc achenes readily germinate under field and lab 
conditions, but appear to lose viability within 18 months of production 
(Bainbridge 1999, S. Bainbridge, pers. comm. 2001). In contrast, the 
ray achenes do not germinate readily under field and lab conditions; 
they represent the persistent soil seed bank in the field, and 
germination may be delayed for many years until further environmental 
cues break their dormancy (Bainbridge 1999).
    The disc achenes usually fall from the receptacle to the ground 
below the parent plant, while the ray achenes are enclosed in a sticky 
glandular phyllary (leaf-like structure) which aides dispersal by 
attaching to animals. Those animals likely to assist in seed dispersal 
include, but are not limited to, mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), gray 
foxes (Urocyon cinereoargenteus), coyotes (Canis latrans), black-tailed 
jackrabbits (Lepus californicus), bobcats (Felis rufus), striped skunks 
(Mephitis mephitis), opossums (Didelphis virginiana), racoons (Procyon 
lotor), and other small mammals and small birds.
    The Holocarpha macradenia seed bank (a reserve of dormant seeds, 
generally found in the soil) is important to the species' year-to-year 
and long-term survival (Bainbridge 1999). A seed bank includes all of 
the seeds in a population and generally covers a larger area than the 
extent of observable plants seen in a given year. The number and 
location of standing plants (the observable plants) in a population 
varies annually due to a number of factors, including the amount and 
timing of rainfall, temperature, soil conditions, and the extent and 
nature of the seed bank. For example, the Graham Hill population near 
Santa Cruz comprised 12,000 standing plants in 1994 and 550 in 2001 (V. 
Haley, consultant, Felton, CA, pers. comm. 2001); the Apple Hill 
population near Watsonville comprised 0 standing plants in 1999 and 
4,049 in 2000 (T. Edell, in litt., 2000).
    The extent of seed bank reserves is variable from population to 
population. At the Twin Lakes population in Santa Cruz, the seed bank 
density averaged 240 seeds per square meter (m\2\) (10 square feet 
(ft\2\)); at the Watsonville Airport, the seed bank density averaged 
887 seeds per (m\2\) (10 ft\2\); at the Porter Ranch population in 
northern Monterey County, the seed bank density averaged 40,000 seeds 
(m\2\) (10 ft\2\) (Bainbridge 1999, S. Bainbridge, pers. comm. 2001).
    Management activities can affect the balance between the number of 
standing plants and the extent of seed bank reserves. Burning, mowing, 
and scraping habitat for Holocarpha macradenia have been utilized to 
enhance populations at several sites, including Graham Hill, Arana 
Gulch, Twin Lakes, Tan, and Apple Hill, with variable results. At the 
Watsonville Airport site, H. macradenia habitat adjacent to runways has 
been mowed, disced, and grazed to maintain visibility for airport 
operations. While this

[[Page 57527]]

management has increased the standing population of H. macradenia, the 
vigor of individual plants appears to be in decline, and the seed bank 
reserve may be becoming depleted (Deb Hillyard, California Department 
of Fish and Game, pers. comm. 2001).
    Habitat for Holocarpha macradenia historically consisted of 
grasslands and prairies found on coastal terraces below 100 meters (m) 
(330 feet (ft)) in elevation, from Monterey County north to Marin 
County. In the late 1800s, coastal prairies were estimated to cover 
350,000 hectares (ha) (865,000 acres (ac)) in California (Huenneke 
1989). However, in the mid 1990s, the California Natural Diversity Data 
Base (CNDDB) estimated that only 800 ha (1980 ac) of high quality 
coastal prairie remained (CNDDB 1996, cited in Holl 1998). 
Historically, four major factors contributed to changes in the 
distribution and composition of coastal prairies: grazing; the 
introduction of highly competitive, non-native species; the elimination 
of periodic fire; and cultivation (Heady et al. 1988). The remaining 
coastal prairie habitat is becoming increasingly fragmented and 
restricted in distribution, largely due to these same factors as well 
as urban development.
    In the Santa Cruz area, Holocarpha macradenia exists on flat to 
gently sloping marine terrace platforms that are separated by steep-
sided gulches. A series of populations occur on older marine terraces 
inland from the communities of Santa Cruz and Soquel; these terraces 
range in elevation from about 34 to 122 m (110 to 400 ft). Two 
populations (Arana Gulch and Twin Lakes) occur on a more recent marine 
terrace at lower elevations (12 to 18 m (40 to 60 ft)) and closer to 
the ocean. In the Watsonville area in Santa Cruz County, a series of H. 
macradenia populations occur on a low-lying marine terrace (15 to 37 m 
(50 to 120 ft) in elevation) that is dissected by Harkins Slough, 
Hanson Slough, and Struve Slough; the close proximity of these 
populations suggest that they were once part of a larger population 
that has since been fragmented by changes in land use over the past 100 
years. Approximately 4 miles north of Watsonville, several H. 
macradenia populations are located on a marine terrace 55 m (180 ft) in 
elevation. Approximately 3 miles south of Watsonville a population 
occurs at an elevation of 30 m (100 ft) on alluvium (sedimentary 
material deposited by flowing water) resulting from marine terrace 
deposits. On the east side of San Francisco Bay (Contra Costa County), 
the marine terraces are more extensively dissected, and H. macradenia 
populations historically occurred on the alluvium resulting from 
terrace deposits (Palmer 1986).
    In Santa Cruz County, where most of the remaining native 
occurrences of Holocarpha macradenia occur, the soils most typically 
found on marine terraces and the alluvial deposits derived from them 
are of several soil series (U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA 1980). 
The Watsonville, Tierra, Elkhorn, and Pinto soil series are most 
frequently associated with occurrences of H. macradenia. These loams 
and sandy loams are very deep and range from well drained to somewhat 
poorly drained. Other soil series, including Los Osos, Elder, and 
Diablo, are also located in the vicinity of known populations of H. 
macradenia, but due to the scale used for mapping the distribution of 
soils we cannot determine the importance of these soils to this 
    Because the soils where Holocarpha macradenia occurs typically 
include a subsurface clay component, they hold moisture longer into the 
growing season compared to the surrounding sandy soils. As a summer-
blooming species, H. macradenia may benefit from this late season 
moisture (California Department of Fish and Game (CDFG) 1995); 
alternatively, the saturated soil conditions during the spring season 
may be too wet for many other species to become established, and 
therefore maintain the reduced cover that H. macradenia prefers (Grey 
Hayes, University of California, Santa Cruz, pers. comm. 2001).
    Today, the Santa Cruz tarplant is associated most frequently with 
grasses such as non-native wild oat (Avena fatua), Mediterranean barley 
(Hordeum hystrix), rattlesnake grass (Briza maxima), and bromes (Bromus 
sp.); and native needlegrass (Nassella spp.), and California oatgrass 
(Danthonia californica). Associated native herbaceous species include 
other tarplants from the genus Hemizonia. At some locations, the plant 
is found with rare or sensitive species, including Gairdner's yampah 
(Perideridia gairdneri), San Francisco popcorn flower (Plagiobothrys 
diffusus), Santa Cruz clover (Trifolium buckwestiorum), and the Ohlone 
tiger beetle (Cicindela ohlone), a species listed as endangered 
(Service 2001). Other locally unique plant species such as Choris's 
popcorn flower (Plagiobothrys chorisianus var. chorisianus), Triteleia 
(Triteleia ixiodes), coast coyote thistle (Eryngium armatum), and San 
Francisco gumplant (Grindelia hirsutula var. maritima) also occur in 
these areas.
    The distribution of Holocarpha macradenia has been severely reduced 
due to continuing destruction and alteration of coastal prairie 
habitat. All of the native San Francisco Bay area populations have been 
extirpated. The last remaining native population, known as the Pinole 
Vista population, consisting of 10,000 plants, was eliminated in 1993 
by commercial development (CDFG 1997).
    Along Monterey Bay in Santa Cruz and Monterey Counties, 
approximately 13 populations are extant. According to CNDDB, an 
additional nine populations along the Monterey Bay have been extirpated 
by development, most recently in 1993 when a population in Watsonville 
(Anna Street site) was destroyed during construction of office 
buildings and a parking lot (CDFG 1993 and 1995a). Other populations 
have been in decline or have recently disappeared due to changes in 
grassland management that favor species which compete with Holocarpha 
macradenia. Where habitat is still intact, management favorable to H. 
macradenia can reverse these trends and allow seeds in the dormant seed 
bank of the species to germinate and grow. The ability to provide 
appropriate management for the remaining occurrences of H. macradenia 
will be pivotal in the recovery the species.
    Holocarpha macradenia is currently known from approximately 13 
native and eight experimentally seeded populations (CNDDB 2001, CDFG 
2000) in Contra Costa, Monterey, and Santa Cruz Counties. Some of these 
native populations may represent separate, fragmented patches of what 
historically was a single larger population. Seven of the native 
populations occur around the cities of Santa Cruz and Soquel. These 
populations, with the number of standing plants and year of the most 
recent survey, are: Graham Hill Road, 550 (2001); De Laveaga, 1000 
(2000), Arana Gulch, 234 (2000); Twin Lakes, 16 (1999); O'Neill/Tan, 0 
(1998); Winkle (also referred to as Santa Cruz Gardens), 0 (1994); and 
Fairway, 150 (2001). Note that the names of the populations used here 
are those used in the final rule to list the species published on March 
20, 2000 (65 FR 14898).
    The remaining six native populations occur around the city of 
Watsonville. Four of these are bounded generally by Corralitos Creek, 
Harkins Slough, Watsonville Slough, and the city of Watsonville; they 
may represent remnants of a larger population. These four populations, 
with their number of standing plants and year of the most recent survey 
are: Watsonville Airport, 4 million (2000); Harkins Slough, 15,000

[[Page 57528]]

(1993); Apple Hill, 4049 (2000); and Struve Slough, 1 (1994). Two 
outlying populations in the Watsonville area are: Spring Hills Golf 
Course, 4,000 (1990); and Porter Ranch, 3,200 (1993).
    The other eight existing populations of Holocarpha macradenia have 
resulted from experimental planting of seed in Wildcat Regional Park in 
the east San Francisco Bay area (East Bay). The final rule to list H. 
macradenia (65 FR 14898) included a discussion of these efforts to 
establish new populations within the historic range of the species. 
Twenty-two sites were seeded between 1982 and 1986 in what appeared to 
be suitable habitat but representing a range of conditions based on the 
following criteria: soil series (Tierra as well as five others), 
grazing pressure (light or moderate), and exposure to coastal fog (fog, 
wind but no fog, and out of wind). The seeds used for the planting had 
been collected from East Bay populations at the northern end of the 
species' range. Although a number of populations did well for a few 
years, many have failed to persist. Of the eight populations that have 
persisted at least for 14 years, only one, named Mezue, has 
consistently supported large numbers of individuals. In the year 2000, 
this population was the largest it has been since the initial seeding 
in 1983 and supported over 17,000 individuals (CDFG 2000).
    Several agencies have taken the initiative to undertake efforts to 
enhance habitat for H. macradenia. In conjunction with the CDFG, the 
city of Santa Cruz has been applying a variety of habitat manipulations 
to plots within the Arana Gulch Open Space Preserve, including raking, 
scraping, mowing, and controlled burning with the objective of 
increasing the number of standing individuals, which had been in 
decline since grazing was terminated in the 1980s (CDFG 1997). The CDFG 
has been applying habitat manipulations and carrying out seed bank 
studies (Bainbridge 1999). The California Department of Transportation 
has been mowing the Apple Hill population west of Watsonville to reduce 
the biomass of non-native grasses (T. Edell, in litt., 1998). While the 
interpretation of results can be complex, these efforts generally show 
that the number of standing individuals can be increased by reducing 
the potential for competition between H. macradenia and non-native 
grasses through mowing and other techniques. However, increasing the 
number of standing individuals may also deplete seed bank reserves; 
therefore, the goals of appropriate management should include not only 
increasing the number of standing individuals in small populations, but 
also maintaining the appropriate balance between standing individuals 
and seed bank reserves.
    Several proposed development projects will impact habitat for 
Holocarpha macradenia. Housing developments have been approved for 
several sites including the Graham Hill site and the Fairway site, but 
management plans for H. macradenia have not yet been fully implemented. 
A management plan for H. macradenia has been initiated for the Tan 
population, but has not yet resulted in enhancement of the population. 
Approval for a housing development adjacent to the Winkle population is 
pending. A housing development for the Struve Slough was recently 
approved without any active management plan for H. macradenia. As a 
result of a legal challenge, Watsonville Wetlands Watch has been 
granted a 3-year time period to raise funding to purchase the 6-ac 
parcel that supports H. macradenia for conservation purposes (Superior 
Court of the State of California 2001).
    As has been observed at the Watsonville Airport, human activities, 
such as mowing and cattle grazing can favor the abundance of Holocarpha 
macradenia by reducing competition from other herbaceous species. 
However, because these activities can also promote the spread and 
establishment of non-native species, they should be repeated frequently 
to maintain the establishment of H. macradenia. Such intensive 
management may not be practical in all areas where H. macradenia 
habitat includes a complement of non-native species. Moreover, while 
the presence of H. macradenia could be maintained in areas with a high 
abundance of non-native species, the habitat quality of these areas may 
be less than areas where the presence of non-native species is minimal.
    Based on the presence of other fragments of remaining coastal 
terrace prairie habitat, we believe that other populations of 
Holocarpha macradenia may occur within the current range of the species 
but have not yet been detected by botanists. In particular, suitable 
habitat most likely remains on older coastal terraces that lie to the 
north of the cities of Santa Cruz and Soquel. These areas may contain a 
viable seed bank, even if no standing plants are found.
    Holocarpha macradenia is threatened primarily by historic and 
recent habitat destruction caused by residential development and 
habitat alteration caused primarily by land management practices that 
favor the increase of other species which compete with H. macradenia. 
Most often, the establishment of invasive, competing species follows 
from the cessation of grazing by cattle or horses. Future loss of 
habitat may also result from recreational development, airport 
expansion, and agriculture. Habitat that has been set aside in 
preserves, conservation easements, and open spaces also suffers 
secondary impacts from: (1) Casual use by residents, (2) introduction 
of non-natives, (3) lack of active management, and (4) changes in 
hydrology. In particular, smaller preserve areas with H. macradenia 
suffer because they are cut off from the ecosystem functions, such as 
those involving soil and water, that would be present in larger, more 
contiguous sites. More often, these smaller areas are left as open 
spaces, but without the benefit of the grassland management needed to 
sustain them.
    Non-native species that have invaded and threaten habitat 
supporting native populations of Holocarpha macradenia include French 
broom (Genista monspessulana), eucalyptus (Eucalyptus sp.), acacia 
(Acacia decurrens, A. melanoxylon), and a number of non-native grass 
species, particularly Harding grass (Phalaris aquatica) and bromes 
(Bromus spp.). In Wildcat Regional Park in the East Bay area, artichoke 
thistle (Cynara cardunculus) has invaded habitat for H. macradenia at 
the one site that is being proposed for critical habitat (Mezue), as 
well as many of the other sites where introduced populations of H. 
macradenia were attempted.

Previous Federal Action

    Federal action on this plant began when the Secretary of the 
Smithsonian Institution, as directed by section 12 of the Act, prepared 
a report on those native U.S. plants considered to be endangered, 
threatened, or extinct in the United States. This report (House Doc. 
No. 94-51), was presented to Congress on January 9, 1975, and included 
Holocarpha macradenia as endangered. On July 1, 1975, we published a 
notice in the Federal Register (40 FR 27823) accepting the report as a 
petition within the context of section 4(c)(2) (now section 4(b)(3)) of 
the Act and of our intention thereby to review the status of the plant 
taxa named therein. On June 16, 1976, we published a proposed rule in 
the Federal Register (41 FR 24523) determining approximately 1,700 
vascular plant species to be endangered pursuant to section 4 of the 
Act. Holocarpha macradenia was included in this June 16, 1976, Federal 
Register document.

[[Page 57529]]

    In 1978, amendments to the Act required that all proposals over two 
years old be withdrawn. A one-year grace period was given to those 
proposed rules already more than two years old. Later, on December 10, 
1979, we published a notice (44 FR 70796) of the withdrawal of the 
portion of the June 16, 1976, proposed rule that had not been made 
final, along with four other proposed rules that had expired. We 
published an updated notice of review (NOR) for plants on December 15, 
1980 (45 FR 82480). This notice included Holocarpha macradenia as a 
category one candidate (species for which data in our possession was 
sufficient to support proposals for listing).
    On February 15, 1983, we published a notice (48 FR 6752) of our 
prior finding that the listing of Holocarpha macradenia was warranted 
but precluded in accordance with section 4(b)(3)(B)(iii) of the Act as 
amended in 1982. Pursuant to section 4(b)(3)(C)(i) of the Act, this 
finding must be recycled annually, until the species is either proposed 
for listing, or the petitioned action is found to be not warranted. 
Each October from 1983 through 1990 further findings were made that the 
listing of H. macradenia was warranted, but that the listing of this 
species was precluded by other pending proposals of higher priority.
    Holocarpha macradenia continued to be included as a category one 
candidate in plant NORs published September 27, 1985 (50 FR 39526), 
February 1, 1990 (55 FR 6184), and September 30, 1993 (58 FR 51144). 
Upon publication of the February 28, 1996, NOR (61 FR 7596), we ceased 
using category designations and included H. macradenia as a candidate. 
Candidate species are those for which we have on file sufficient 
information on biological vulnerability and threats to support 
proposals to list them as threatened or endangered. The 1997 NOR, 
published September 19, 1997 (62 FR 49398) retained H. macradenia as a 
candidate, with a listing priority of 2. On March 20, 1998, we 
published a proposed rule in the Federal Register (63 FR 15142) to list 
H. macradenia. The final rule listing H. macradenia as a threatened 
species was published on March 20, 2000 (65 FR 14898).
    Section 4(a)(3) of the Act, as amended, and implementing 
regulations (50 CFR 424.12) require that, to the maximum extent prudent 
and determinable, the Secretary designate critical habitat at the time 
the species is determined to be endangered or threatened. Our 
regulations (50 CFR 424.12(a)(1)) state that designation of critical 
habitat is not prudent when one or both of the following situations 
exist: (1) The species is threatened by taking or other human activity, 
and identification of critical habitat can be expected to increase the 
degree of threat to the species, or (2) such designation of critical 
habitat would not be beneficial to the species. At the time Holocarpha 
macradenia was listed, we found that designation of critical habitat 
for H. macradenia was prudent, but that given our limited listing 
budget, designation of critical habitat would have to be deferred so as 
to allow us to concentrate limited resources on higher priority 
critical habitat and other listing actions.
    On June 17, 1999, our failure to issue final rules for listing 
Holocarpha macradenia and eight other plant species as endangered or 
threatened, and our failure to make a final critical habitat 
determination for the nine species was challenged in Southwest Center 
for Biological Diversity and California Native Plant Society v. Babbitt 
(Case No. C99-2992 (N.D.Cal.)). On May 22, 2000, the judge signed an 
order for the Service to propose critical habitat for the species by 
September 30, 2001. In mid-September 2001, plaintiffs agreed to a brief 
extension of this due date until November 2, 2001.

Critical Habitat

    Critical habitat is defined in section 3 of the Act as--(i) the 
specific areas within the geographic area occupied by a species, at the 
time it is listed in accordance with the Act, on which are found those 
physical or biological features (I) essential to the conservation of 
the species and (II) that may require special management considerations 
or protection; and (ii) specific areas outside the geographic area 
occupied by a species at the time it is listed, upon a determination 
that such areas are essential for the conservation of the species. 
``Conservation'' means the use of all methods and procedures that are 
necessary to bring an endangered or a threatened species to the point 
at which listing under the Act is no longer necessary.
    In order to be included in a critical habitat designation, the 
habitat must first be ``essential to the conservation of the species.'' 
Critical habitat designations identify, to the extent known using the 
best scientific and commercial data available, habitat areas that 
provide essential life cycle needs of the species (i.e., areas on which 
are found the primary constituent elements, as defined at 50 CFR 
    When we determine critical habitat at the time of listing, as 
required under section 4 of the Act, or under short court-ordered 
deadlines, we may not have the information necessary to identify all 
areas that are essential for the conservation of the species. 
Nevertheless, we are required to designate those areas we know to be 
critical habitat using the best information available to us.
    Within the geographic area occupied by the species, we will 
designate only areas currently known to be essential. Essential areas 
should already have the features and habitat characteristics that are 
necessary to sustain the species. We will not speculate about what 
areas might be found to be essential if better information became 
available, or what areas may become essential over time. If the 
information available at the time of designation does not show that an 
area provides essential life cycle needs of the species, then the area 
should not be included in the critical habitat designation. Within the 
geographic area occupied by the species, we will not designate areas 
that do not now have the primary constituent elements, as defined at 50 
CFR 424.12(b), which provide essential life cycle needs of the species.
    Our regulations state that, ``The Secretary shall designate as 
critical habitat areas outside the geographic area presently occupied 
by the species only when a designation limited to its present range 
would be inadequate to ensure the conservation of the species.'' (50 
CFR 424.12(e)). Accordingly, when the best available scientific and 
commercial data do not demonstrate that the conservation needs of the 
species require designation of critical habitat outside of occupied 
areas, we will not designate critical habitat in areas outside the 
geographic area occupied by the species.
    Our Policy on Information Standards Under the Endangered Species 
Act, published in the Federal Register on July 1, 1994 (59 FR 34271), 
provides criteria, establishes procedures, and provides guidance to 
ensure that our decisions represent the best scientific and commercial 
data available. It requires our biologists, to the extent consistent 
with the Act and with the use of the best scientific and commercial 
data available, to use primary and original sources of information as 
the basis for recommendations to designate critical habitat. When 
determining which areas are critical habitat, a primary source of 
information should be the listing package for the species. Additional 
information may be obtained from a recovery plan, articles in peer-
reviewed journals, conservation plans developed by States and counties, 
scientific status surveys and studies,

[[Page 57530]]

and biological assessments or other unpublished materials (i.e., gray 
    Habitat is often dynamic, and populations may move from one area to 
another over time. Furthermore, we recognize that designation of 
critical habitat may not include all of the habitat areas that may 
eventually be determined to be necessary for the recovery of the 
species. For these reasons, critical habitat designations do not signal 
that habitat outside the designation is unimportant or may not be 
required for recovery. Areas outside the critical habitat designation 
will continue to be subject to conservation actions that may be 
implemented under section 7(a)(1) of the Act and to the regulatory 
protections afforded by the section 7(a)(2) jeopardy standard and the 
prohibitions of section 9 of the Act, as determined on the basis of the 
best available information at the time of the action. We specifically 
anticipate that federally funded or assisted projects affecting listed 
species outside their designated critical habitat areas may still 
result in jeopardy findings in some cases. Similarly, critical habitat 
designations made on the basis of the best available information at the 
time of designation will not control the direction and substance of 
future recovery plans, habitat conservation plans, or other species 
conservation planning efforts if new information available to these 
planning efforts calls for a different outcome.

Methods for Selection of Areas for Proposed Critical Habitat 

    As required by the Act and regulations (section 4(b)(2) and 50 CFR 
424.12) we used the best scientific information available to determine 
areas that contain the physical and biological features that are 
essential for the survival and recovery of Holocarpha macradenia. This 
information included information from the California Natural Diversity 
Data Base (CNDDB 2001), soil survey maps (Soil Conservation Service 
1980, 1978), aerial photos available through TerraServer (http://
terraserver.homeadvisor.msn.com), aerial photos on loan from the County 
of Santa Cruz Planning Department, recent biological surveys and 
reports, additional information provided by interested parties, and 
discussions with botanical experts. Frequently accompanied by agency 
representatives, we also conducted site visits, either cursory or more 
extensive, at a number of locations managed by, or with involvement 
from, local, State or Federal agencies, including Graham Hill, De 
Laveaga Park, Twin Lakes State Beach, Arana Gulch Open Space Area (City 
of Santa Cruz), Anna Jean Cummings County Park (Santa Cruz County), and 
the Watsonville Airport (City of Watsonville). We also visited the 
Porter Ranch site, which is owned and managed by the Elkhorn Slough 
    Much of what is known about the specific physical and biological 
requirements of Holocarpha macradenia is described in the Background 
section of this proposed rule. Additional information about appropriate 
management techniques is being generated by ongoing management efforts 
and research on life history. As discussed in the Background section, 
several agencies such as the California Department of Fish and Game, 
the California Department of Parks and Recreation, the California 
Department of Transportation, the county of Santa Cruz, the city of 
Santa Cruz, and East Bay Regional Park District are undertaking efforts 
to learn how to better enhance habitat for H. macradenia. Preliminary 
management and seed bank studies show that habitat manipulation such as 
burning, mowing, grazing, and scraping can increase standing numbers of 
plants and may be necessary to enhance and maintain populations of H. 
macradenia. Active management is necessary to preserve habitat which is 
essential for the long-term conservation of H. macradenia.

Primary Constituent Elements

    In accordance with section 3(5)(A)(I) of the Act and regulations at 
50 CFR 424.12, in determining which areas to propose as critical 
habitat, we consider those physical and biological features (primary 
constituent elements) that are essential to the conservation of the 
species and that may require special management considerations or 
protection. These include, but are not limited to: space for individual 
and population growth, and for normal behavior; food, water, air, 
light, minerals or other nutritional or physiological requirements; 
cover or shelter; sites for breeding, reproduction, or rearing of 
offspring, germination, or seed dispersal; and habitats that are 
protected from disturbance or are representative of the historic 
geographical and ecological distributions of a species.
    Based on our knowledge to date, the primary constituent elements 
for H. macradenia consist of, but are not limited to:
    (1) Soils associated with coastal terraces prairies, including the 
Watsonville, Tierra, Elkhorn, Santa Inez, and Pinto series.
    (2) Plant communities that support associated species, including 
native grasses such as Nassella sp.(needlegrass) and Danthonia 
californica (California oatgrass); native herbaceous species such as 
members of the genus Hemizonia (other tarplants), Perideridia gairdneri 
(Gairdner's yampah), Plagiobothrys diffusus (San Francisco popcorn 
flower), and Trifolium buckwestiorum (Santa Cruz clover); and
    (3) Physical processes, particularly soils and hydrologic 
processes, that maintain the soil structure and hydrology that produce 
the seasonally saturated soils characteristic of Holocarpha macradenia 

Site Selection

    We identified critical habitat areas essential for the conservation 
of Holocarpha macradenia in the three primary areas where it is known 
to occur: in the East Bay (Contra Costa County), in the Santa Cruz-
Soquel area (Santa Cruz County), and the Watsonville area (Santa Cruz 
and Monterey Counties). Historic locations for which there are no 
recent records of occupancy (within the last 20 years) were not 
proposed for designation, including those previously found in Marin and 
Alameda Counties that have become urbanized over the last 100 years; 
locations to the north of Santa Cruz where H. macradenia has not been 
seen in over 50 years; and locations around the Watsonville area that 
have been destroyed by fill, agricultural activities, and parking lot 
construction. In the East Bay, only one of the eight sites that support 
an introduced population of H. macradenia in Wildcat Regional Park is 
being proposed for designation because it is the largest seeded 
population that represents the genetic variability of the northern 
portion of the species' range.
    The long-term survival and recovery of Holocarpha macradenia is 
dependent upon the protection of existing population sites, and the 
maintenance of ecological functions within these sites. Important 
ecological functions include connectivity between sites within close 
geographic proximity to facilitate pollinator activity and seed 
dispersal, and the ability to maintain disturbance factors (for 
example, grazing, mowing, or fire disturbance) that maintain the 
openness of vegetation on which the species depends. Threats to the 
remaining habitat of H. macradenia include: urban development and its 
associated impacts, such as habitat fragmentation, recreational use, 
and changes in grazing regimes that have facilitated the increase in 
non-native plant species that

[[Page 57531]]

compete with H. macradenia. The areas we are proposing to designate as 
critical habitat provide some or all of the habitat components 
essential for the conservation of H. macradenia. Given the species' 
need for an open plant community structure and the threat of 
competition from non-native species, we believe that these areas 
require special management considerations or protection.
    In our delineation of the critical habitat units, we believe it is 
important to propose all areas that are currently support native 
populations of Holocarpha macradenia because the number of populations 
that have been extirpated and the reduction in range that the species 
has undergone place a great importance on the conservation of all the 
known remaining sites. In the area just west of Watsonville, a number 
of populations that are in close geographic proximity to each other are 
included in the same unit because the distribution of H. macradenia in 
this area was probably once greater, prior to fragmentation of 
populations into smaller units. Including these populations in one unit 
is important to maintain connectivity among them.
    With regard to the experimental seeded populations of H. 
macradenia, we acknowledge the importance these seeding trials have 
offered with respect to understanding the range of habitat 
characteristics that H. macradenia may tolerate. However, for purposes 
of designating critical habitat, we believe that the area that supports 
the Mezue population has the most important role to play in the 
recovery of the species. This population is the best expression of the 
genetic variability that once occurred in the northern end of the range 
of the species; native stands in this portion of the range have now 
been extirpated.
    Even though we do not have sufficient information at this time to 
propose sites other than where populations are currently known to 
occur, this does not signal that habitat outside the designation is 
unimportant or may not be required for recovery of the species. Areas 
that support newly discovered populations in the future, but are 
outside the proposed critical habitat designation, will continue to be 
subject to conservation actions that may be implemented under section 
7(a)(1) of the Act and to the regulatory protections afforded by the 
section 7(a)(2) jeopardy standard and the prohibitions of section 9 of 
the Act, as determined on the basis of the best available information 
at the time an action is being proposed.


    The proposed critical habitat units were delineated by creating 
data layers in a geographic information system (GIS) format of the 
areas of known occurrences of Holocarpha macradenia, using information 
from the California Natural Diversity Data Base (CNDDB 2001), aerial 
photos, recent biological surveys and reports, and discussions with 
botanical experts. These data layers were created on a base of USGS 
7.5' quadrangles obtained from the State of California's Stephen P. 
Teale Data Center. Proposed critical habitat units were mapped using 
Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) coordinates. Some units were mapped 
with a greater precision than others, based on the available 
information, and the size of the unit. We anticipate that in the time 
between the proposed rule and the final rule, and based upon the 
additional information received during the public comment period, that 
the boundaries of certain mapping units will be refined.
    In selecting areas of proposed critical habitat we made an effort 
to avoid developed areas, such as housing developments, that are 
unlikely to contain the primary constituent elements or otherwise 
contribute to the conservation of Holocarpha macradenia. However, we 
did not map critical habitat in sufficient detail to exclude all 
developed areas, or other lands unlikely to contain the primary 
constituent elements essential for the conservation of H. macradenia. 
Areas within the boundaries of the mapped units, such as buildings, 
roads, parking lots, railroads, airport runways and other paved areas, 
lawns, and other urban landscaped areas will not contain any of the 
primary constituent elements. Federal actions limited to these areas, 
therefore would not trigger a section 7 consultation, unless they 
affect the species and/or primary constituent elements in adjacent 
critical habitat.

Proposed Critical Habitat Designation

    The proposed critical habitat areas described below constitute our 
best assessment at this time of the areas needed for the conservation 
and recovery of Holocarpha macradenia. Critical habitat being proposed 
for H. macradenia includes 11 units that currently sustain the species. 
Protection of this proposed critical habitat is essential for the 
conservation of the species because the geographic range that H. 
macradenia occupies has been reduced to so few sites that the species 
may well be threatened with extinction in the near future, particularly 
if appropriate management of the remaining habitat is not employed. The 
areas being proposed as critical habitat are within the three primary 
areas that currently support H. macradenia and include the appropriate 
coastal terrace prairie habitat necessary for the species. We propose 
to designate approximately 1,360 ha (3,360 ac) of land as critical 
habitat for H. macradenia. Approximately 3 percent of these lands are 
owned by the State, while county, regional, and city lands comprise 
approximately 18 percent, and private lands comprise approximately 79 
percent of the proposed critical habitat. All units are within the 
geographic area occupied by the species in accordance with section 
3(5)(A)(i) of the Act.
    A brief description of each critical habitat unit is given below:
East Bay Area Unit
Unit A: Mezue
    Unit A consists of grassland habitat on sloping alluvial deposits 
from old marine terraces within Wildcat Regional Park in Contra Costa 
County. This entire unit of approximately 61 ha (150 ac) is on lands 
managed by the East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD). Management 
activities at this site include controlled grazing, removal of invasive 
artichoke thistle, and annual population monitoring (EBRPD 1992 and 
2001). Of the 22 sites that were used as sites to introduce Holocarpha 
macradenia seed in the East Bay region between 1982 and 1986, this 
population has been the only one that has consistently supported a 
large population of H. macradenia. In the year 2000, this population 
supported over 17,000 individuals (CDFG 2000). Although this population 
is an introduced population, this unit is critical to the survival and 
conservation of the species because this population represents the 
genetic variability in the northernmost portion of the plant's range 
and is important for the expansion of the existing population.

Santa Cruz--Soquel Area Units

Unit B: Graham Hill
    Unit B consists of grasslands on a relatively flat coastal terrace 
prairie on the west side of Graham Hill Road, approximately 1 mile 
north of the city of Santa Cruz in Santa Cruz County. This entire unit 
of approximately 12 ha (30 ac) is on privately owned lands. The unit 
includes a 7 ha (17 ac) area that has been set aside for conservation 
of coastal prairie habitat and Holocarpha macradenia as mitigation for 
an adjacent development that comprises 52 residences and associated 
amenities. The population has been fenced and

[[Page 57532]]

non-native species have been removed; however, efforts to enhance the 
population, as called for in a management plan (ESA 1996) have not yet 
been initiated. In 1994, this population numbered 12,000 individuals; 
by 1998, 675 individuals were counted; in 2001, approximately 550 
individuals were counted (V. Haley, consultant, Felton, California, 
pers. comm. 2001). This unit is important because it currently supports 
a population of H. macradenia and because it represents the western 
limit of the cluster of populations that are found on the northern end 
of Monterey Bay. This unit, along with the Fairway unit, occur at the 
highest elevation of the native populations (400 ft in elevation) and 
consequently the farthest away from the influence of the coastal 
climate. Preserving genetic variability within the species that has 
allowed it to adapt to these different environmental conditions is 
important for the long-term survival and conservation of the species.
Unit C: De Laveaga
    Unit C consists of grasslands on a relatively flat coastal terrace 
prairie within De Laveaga Park just north of the city of Santa Cruz in 
Santa Cruz County. This entire unit of approximately 3 ha (7 ac) is on 
State lands managed by the California Army National Guard (CANG) and 
supported by Federal funds from the National Guard Bureau. CANG does 
not anticipate undertaking any new activities on this parcel, and is 
currently developing a management plan for Holocarpha macradenia 
(Joanne Froland, biologist, CANG, pers. comm. 2001). In 2001, a 
maintenance crew from the adjacent city-owned golf course spread wood 
chips from a felled tree over half the population. This unit is 
important because it currently supports a population of H. macradenia 
and because it is one of only seven populations in the cluster of 
populations that are found on the northern end of Monterey Bay. Despite 
its small size, this unit is important because it is located between 
the Graham Hill, Arana Gulch, and Rodeo Gulch units, and is important 
for maintaining connectivity between these other units.
Unit D: Arana Gulch
    Unit D consists of grasslands on a relatively flat coastal terrace 
prairie within an open space preserve just north of Woods Lagoon in the 
City of Santa Cruz. This entire unit of approximately 26 ha (65 ac) is 
on lands owned and managed by the City of Santa Cruz. It is bounded on 
the west, east, and north sides by existing development and on the 
south side by the Santa Cruz Harbor. Huge population fluctuations have 
occurred on this site, ranging from 100,000 individuals in the late 
1980s when the site was being grazed by cattle, to only a few hundred 
individuals 4 or 5 years later. The City entered into an MOU with CDFG 
in 1997 to manage Holocarpha macradenia, which includes utilizing a 
variety of management techniques to enhance the population. As of 1998, 
individuals numbered approximately 12,820; in 2000, they numbered 234 
(K. Lyons in litt., 2001). The City is proposing to construct a bicycle 
path that would bisect the management area (Brady and Associates, Inc. 
1997). The bike path would be constructed in part from Federal funding 
provided by the Federal Highway Administration; an informal conference 
with the Service was initiated in 2000 (Service, in litt., 2000). Since 
it was determined that the project is not likely to adversely affect H. 
macradenia, we did not need to convert the informal conference to a 
biological opinion. This unit is important because it currently 
supports a population of H. macradenia and because it is one of only 
seven populations in the cluster of populations that are found on the 
northern end of Monterey Bay. This unit and the Twin Lakes unit occur 
at the lowest elevation of the native populations in the northern 
Monterey Bay area (40 to 60 ft in elevation) and consequently the 
closest to the influence of the coastal climate. Moreover, these two 
units are within one half mile of each other and therefore could retain 
connectivity between them. It is also important for the recovery of the 
species because it is one of only three units that is being managed by 
an agency that has a mandate to conserve sensitive resources and is 
large enough to support management activities that may be necessary to 
maintain the population at this site.
Unit E: Twin Lakes
    Unit E consists of grasslands on relatively flat coastal terrace 
prairie just north of Schwan Lagoon within the City of Santa Cruz. This 
entire unit of approximately 10 ha (26 ac) is on lands owned by the 
California Department of Parks and Recreation (CDPR) within Twin Lakes 
State Park. It is bounded on the west, north, and east sides by 
existing development, and on the south side by Schwan Lagoon. Since 
1997, CDPR has been actively managing Holocarpha macradenia habitat by 
removing invasive, non-native species and attempting various methods to 
enhance the population (Service 2000). CDPR has also funded research on 
H. macradenia seed bank dynamics (Bainbridge 1999). This population has 
ranged in size from 120 in 1986 to just a few dozen individuals in the 
last few years. This unit is important because it currently supports a 
population of H. macradenia and because it is one of only seven 
populations in the cluster of populations that are found on the 
northern end of Monterey Bay. As with the Arana Gulch unit, it occurs 
at the lowest elevation of the native populations in the northern 
Monterey Bay area (40 to 60 ft in elevation) and consequently the 
closest to the influence of the coastal climate. Moreover, the two 
units are within one half mile of each other and therefore could retain 
connectivity between them. This unit is also important because it is 
one of only three units that is being managed by an agency that has a 
mandate to protect sensitive resources.
Unit F: Rodeo Gulch
    Unit F consists of sloping alluvial deposits and adjacent 
relatively flat coastal terrace prairie that straddles the Arana Gulch 
and Rodeo Gulch drainages north of the community of Soquel in Santa 
Cruz County. It is bounded on the north, east and south sides by 
existing development; the western side is bounded by lands that have 
not been developed. This entire unit of approximately 11 ha (27 ac) is 
on privately owned lands. This unit includes a parcel that has recently 
been proposed for a housing development known as Santa Cruz Gardens 
Subdivision Unit 12 (Denise Duffy and Associates 2001); this parcel was 
previously set aside in a ``temporary open space easement'' as 
mitigation for destroying a portion of the H. macradenia population by 
an earlier phase of the development in 1986 (Service 2000). The current 
development proposal calls for setting aside approximately 23 ha (56 
ac) for conservation and recreation purposes, and includes much of the 
habitat that supports H. macradenia. Salvage of soil and a H. 
macradenia seed bank is being proposed for another portion of the 
project site that will be impacted by development (Lyons 1999). This 
population numbered approximately 60 individuals in 1993; none have 
been observed since then. However, a seed bank likely persists at this 
site. This unit is important because of the likely presence of a H. 
macradenia seed bank and because it is one of only seven populations in 
the cluster of populations that are found on the northern end of 
Monterey Bay. In

[[Page 57533]]

addition, the seedbank for this population, this unit supports 
grassland habitat that provides for future expansion of the population. 
Also, it is within one half mile of the Soquel unit, and therefore 
could retain connectivity between the units.
Unit G: Soquel
    Unit G consists of grasslands on sloping alluvial deposits and 
adjacent relatively flat coastal terrace prairie that straddles Rodeo 
Gulch and Soquel Creek drainages north of the community of Soquel in 
Santa Cruz County. It is bounded on the north, east, and south sides by 
existing development; the western side is bounded by lands that have 
not been developed. Approximately 22 ha (55 ac) of this 40 ha (100 ac) 
unit is within Anna Jean Cummings Regional Park (also known as O'Neill 
Ranch), which is managed by the County of Santa Cruz, and the remaining 
portion is privately owned. On the park lands, the population has been 
fenced, and portions of the habitat for the plant is being mowed and 
raked in accordance with a management plan (Ecosystems West 1999; Joe 
Rigney, consultant, pers. comm. 2001). The County of Santa Cruz 
approved a housing development for the privately owned parcel (known as 
Tan, but now called Seacrest) in 1997. The development included an 
approximately 4 ha (10 ac) parcel to be set aside for conservation and 
a plan to manage the habitat for Holocarpha macradenia. Although part 
of the same population, the CNDDB has maintained two separate entries 
(O'Neill and Tan) to reflect the two land ownerships. The total number 
of individuals in the combined population has never been larger than 
200 individuals, with the private parcel supporting only a portion of 
those. To date, management activities have not resulted in an 
enhancement of the population of the species on either parcel. This 
unit is important because it has recently supported a population of H. 
macradenia and the seed bank is still present, and because it is one of 
only seven populations in the cluster of populations that are found on 
the northern end of Monterey Bay. In addition to the seedbank for this 
population, this unit supports grassland habitat that provides for 
future expansion of the population. Also, it is within one half mile of 
the Rodeo Gulch unit, and therefore could retain connectivity between 
the units. Moreover, the acreage in Anna Jean Cummings Park represents 
one of the best remaining fragments of habitat on which to attempt 
recovery activities for H. macradenia, as it has been subject to fewer 
impacts than other sites and is managed by a public agency that is 
concerned about sensitive resources.
Unit H: Porter Gulch
    Unit H consists of grasslands on gently sloping alluvial deposits 
derived from a coastal terrace that straddles the Bates Creek and 
Porter Gulch drainages north of the community of Soquel in Santa Cruz 
County. It is bounded on all sides by undeveloped lands. This entire 
unit of approximately 14 ha (35 ac) is on privately owned lands. The 
population of Holocarpha macradenia at this site includes an 
approximately 12 ha (30 ac) parcel that was proposed for a lot split. A 
management plan for the species was developed as part of the proposed 
split (Greening Associates 1995); however, the management plan for H. 
macradenia has not been fully implemented. This unit also includes 
adjacent coastal prairie habitat, of which approximately 7 ha (9 ac) 
was deeded in 2001 to the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County for 
preservation. In 1993, the population of H. macradenia numbered 
approximately 1,500 individuals. The population numbered only several 
hundred individuals in 2001 when the site was observed to support a 
large cover of rattlesnake grass that likely competed with H. 
macradenia (C. Rutherford, Service, pers. obs., 2001). This unit is 
important because it currently supports a population of H. macradenia, 
and because it is one of only seven populations in the cluster of 
populations that are found on the northern end of Monterey Bay. Also, 
along with the Graham Hill unit, this one occurs at the highest 
elevation of the native populations (400 ft in elevation) and 
consequently the farthest away from the influence of the coastal 
climate. Preserving genetic variability within the species that has 
allowed it to adapt to these slightly different environmental 
conditions would be important for the long-term survival and 
conservation of the species.

Watsonville Area Units

Unit I: Watsonville
    Unit I consists of a complex of grasslands and low-lying drainages 
on alluvial fans and marine terraces west of the city of Watsonville in 
Santa Cruz County. The northern and eastern boundaries reach toward the 
Corralitos Creek drainage except where it runs up against existing 
development. The southeastern and southern boundary is formed by the 
Pajaro River drainage. The western boundary is formed by the Harkins 
Slough drainage and then generally follows Buena Vista Drive north 
until it intersects with the northern perimeter of the Watsonville 
Airport (Airport). This unit excludes paved areas of the Airport, but 
includes the unpaved portions surrounding the runways. This 
approximately 662 ha (1,634 ac) unit is partly owned by the City of 
Watsonville (the Airport) (approximately 135 ha (330 ac)); a small 
portion is under easement to the California Department of 
Transportation (approximately 8 ha (20 ac)); a portion is designated as 
a Reserve by the CDFG (approximately 16 ha (40 ac)); and the remaining 
portion is privately owned (approximately 504 ha (1,245 ac)). This unit 
overlaps in part with an area that is targeted for regional 
conservation planning by the CDFG. Through its Conceptual Area 
Protection Plan process, CDFG, along with other Federal, State, and 
local agencies and organizations, are is identifying opportunities to 
preserve sensitive species and habitats, including the Harkins Slough 
and Watsonville Slough wetlands and adjacent habitats (J. DeWald, in 
litt. 2001). This unit is important because it currently supports 
multiple populations of H. macradenia including the populations known 
from the Airport, Harkins Slough, Apple Hill, and Bay Breeze; this unit 
also supports grassland habitat that is important for the expansion of 
existing populations and for maintaining connectivity between the 
populations. It is also one of only three areas that support 
populations of H. macradenia that are found in the central Monterey Bay 
area and in the southern end of the range of the species. Preserving 
any genetic variability within the species that has allowed it to adapt 
to these slightly different environmental conditions is important for 
the long-term survival and conservation of the species.
Unit J: Casserly
    Unit J consists of open patches of grassland interspersed with golf 
course greens, cattle pastures, croplands, and orchards. This entire 
unit of approximately 450 ha (1,110 ac) consists of privately owned 
lands. It is the unit for which the least amount of information is 
available, particularly with respect to the extent of existing land 
uses in the area that support the primary constituent elements. The 
Spring Hills population of Holocarpha macradenia occurs within this 
unit. The population numbered approximately 4,000 individuals in 1990; 
the population was observed in 1995 and 2001, though not counted. The 
population was fragmented by development of the Spring Hills Golf 
Course, and now consists of five

[[Page 57534]]

separate occurrences. This unit is important because it currently 
supports multiple occurrences of H. macradenia that are found in the 
Monterey Bay area, including the five populations known from the Spring 
Hills Golf Course. This unit also supports grassland habitat that is 
important for the expansion of existing populations, and for 
maintaining connectivity between these populations. It is one of only 
three areas that support populations of H. macradenia that are found in 
the central Monterey Bay area and in the southern end of the range of 
the species as well as the most inland distribution of the species. 
Preserving genetic variability within the species that has allowed it 
to adapt to these slightly different environmental conditions would be 
important for the long-term survival and conservation of the species.
Unit K: Elkhorn
    Unit K consists of sloping terrain on the edges of a coastal 
terrace, just south of the Pajaro River in northern Monterey County. 
The population of Holocarpha macradenia that is found here is unusual 
in that it occurs on a canyon bottom; it is also the only population 
that occurs primarily on the Santa Ynez soil series. This unit of 
approximately 6970 ha (170 ac) is privately owned by the Elkhorn Slough 
Foundation (Foundation). The CDFG holds a conservation easement on an 
approximately 16 ha (40 ac) parcel that overlaps in part with this 
unit; the Foundation is managing the parcel for its biological values. 
Multiple Federal, State, and local government and private agencies have 
recently developed a conservation plan for the Elkhorn Slough 
watershed; this critical habitat unit is within the 18,210 ha (45,000 
ac) area on which the conservation plan focuses (Scharffenberger 1999). 
In 1993, the population at this site comprised approximately 3,200 
individuals (CNDDB 2001). This unit is important because it currently 
supports a population of H. macradenia and because it is one of only 
three areas that support populations of H. macradenia that are found on 
the central Monterey Bay area and in the southern end of the range of 
the species. Also, this is the only populations that occurs primarily 
on the Santa Ynez soil series. Preserving any genetic variability 
within the species that has allowed it to adapt to these slightly 
different environmental conditions is important for the long-term 
survival and conservation of the species. In addition to the current 
population, this unit comprises grassland habitat that is important for 
the expansion of the population.
    The approximate areas of proposed critical habitat by land 
ownership are shown in Table 1. Lands proposed are under private, 
county, State, and Federal jurisdiction.

     Table 1.--Approximate Areas, Given in Hectares (ha) and Acres (ac)\1\ of Proposed Critical Habitat for
                                     Holocarpha Macradenia by Land Ownership
                 Unit name                      State        Private     County/City     Federal        Total
A. Mezue..................................         0 ha          0 ha         61 ha          0 ha         61 ha
                                                  (0 ac)        (0 ac)      (150 ac)        (0 ac)      (150 ac)
B. Graham Hill............................         0 ha         14 ha          0 ha          0 ha         14 ha
                                                  (0 ac)       (35 ac)        (0 ac)        (0 ac)       (35 ac)
C. De Laveaga.............................         3 ha          0 ha          0 ha          0 ha          3 ha
                                                  (7 ac)        (0 ac)        (0 ac)        (0 ac)        (7 ac)
D. Arana Gulch............................         0 ha          0 ha         26 ha          0 ha         26 ha
                                                  (0 ac)        (0 ac)       (65 ac)        (0 ac)       (65 ac)
E. Twin Lakes.............................        10 ha          0 ha          0 ha          0 ha         10 ha
                                                 (26 ac)        (0 ac)        (0 ac)        (0 ac)       (26 ac)
F. Rodeo Gulch............................         0 ha         11 ha          0 ha          0 ha         11 ha
                                                  (0 ac)       (27 ac)        (0 ac)        (0 ac)       (27 ac)
G. Soquel.................................         0 ha         18 ha         22 ha          0 ha         40 ha
                                                  (0 ac)       (45 ac)       (55 ac)        (0 ac)      (100 ac)
H. Porter Gulch...........................         0 ha         14 ha          0 ha          0 ha         14 ha
                                                  (0 ac)       (35 ac)        (0 ac)        (0 ac)       (35 ac)
I. Watsonville............................        24 ha        504 ha        134 ha          0 ha        662 ha
                                                 (60 ac)    (1,245 ac)      (330 ac)        (0 ac)    (1,635 ac)
J. Casserly...............................         0 ha        450 ha          0 ha          0 ha        450 ha
                                                  (0 ac)    (1,110 ac)        (0 ac)        (0 ac)    (1,110 ac)
K. Elkhorn................................         0 ha         69 ha          0 ha          0 ha         69 ha
                                                  (0 ac)      (170 ac)        (0 ac)        (0 ac)      (170 ac)
      Total...............................        37 ha      1,081 ha        243 ha          0 ha      1,360 ha
                                                 (93 ac)    (2,667 ac)      (600 ac)        (0 ac)    (3,360 ac) 
\1\ Approximate acres from GIS map data have been converted to hectares (1 ha = 2.47 ac). Based on the level of
  imprecision of mapping, approximate hectares and acres greater than or equal to 30 ( 30) have been
  rounded to the nearest 5; totals are sums of columns and rows.

Effects of Critical Habitat Designation

Section 7 Consultation

    Critical habitat receives protection under section 7 of the Act 
through the prohibition against destruction or adverse modification of 
critical habitat with regard to actions carried out, funded, or 
authorized by a Federal agency. Section 7 also requires conferences on 
Federal actions that are likely to result in the destruction or adverse 
modification of proposed critical habitat. In our regulations at 50 CFR 
402.02, we define destruction or adverse modification as ``direct or 
indirect alteration that appreciably diminishes the value of critical 
habitat for both the survival and recovery of a listed species. Such 
alterations include, but are not limited to, alterations adversely 
modifying any of those physical or biological features that were the 
basis for determining the habitat to be critical.'' Aside from the 
added protection that may be provided under section 7, the Act does not 
provide other forms of protection to lands designated as critical 
habitat. Because consultation under section 7 of the Act does not

[[Page 57535]]

apply to activities on private or other non-Federal lands that do not 
involve a Federal nexus, critical habitat designation would not afford 
any additional protections under the Act against such activities.
    Section 7(a)(2) of the Act requires Federal agencies, including the 
Service, to ensure that actions they fund, authorize, permit, or carry 
out do not destroy or adversely modify critical habitat to the extent 
that the action appreciably diminishes the value of the critical 
habitat for the survival and recovery of the species. Individuals, 
organizations, States, local governments, and other non-Federal 
entities are affected by the designation of critical habitat only if 
their actions occur on Federal lands, require a Federal permit, 
license, or other authorization, or involve Federal funding.
    Section 7(a) of the Act requires Federal agencies, including the 
Service, to evaluate their actions with respect to any species that is 
proposed or listed as endangered or threatened, and with respect to its 
critical habitat, if any is designated or proposed. Regulations 
implementing this interagency cooperation provision of the Act are 
codified at 50 CFR part 402. Section 7(a)(4) of the Act requires 
Federal agencies to confer with us on any action that is likely to 
jeopardize the continued existence of a proposed species or result in 
destruction or adverse modification of proposed critical habitat. 
Conference reports provide conservation recommendations to assist 
Federal agencies in eliminating conflicts that may be caused by their 
proposed action(s). The conservation measures in a conference report 
are advisory. If a species is listed or critical habitat is designated, 
section 7(a)(2) of the Act requires Federal agencies to ensure that 
actions they authorize, fund, or carry out are not likely to jeopardize 
the continued existence of such a species or to destroy or adversely 
modify its critical habitat. If a Federal action may affect a listed 
species or its critical habitat, the responsible Federal agency (action 
agency) must enter into consultation with us. Through this consultation 
we would ensure that the permitted actions do not destroy or adversely 
modify critical habitat.
    When we issue a biological opinion concluding that a project is 
likely to result in the destruction or adverse modification of critical 
habitat, we also provide reasonable and prudent alternatives to the 
project, if any are identifiable. Reasonable and prudent alternatives 
are defined at 50 CFR 402.02 as alternative actions identified during 
consultation that can be implemented in a manner consistent with the 
intended purpose of the action, that are consistent with the scope of 
the Federal agency's legal authority and jurisdiction, that are 
economically and technologically feasible, and that the Director 
believes would avoid destruction or adverse modification of critical 
habitat. Reasonable and prudent alternatives can vary from slight 
project modifications to extensive redesign or relocation of the 
project. Costs associated with implementing a reasonable and prudent 
alternative are similarly variable.
    Regulations at 50 CFR 402.16 require Federal agencies to reinitiate 
consultation on previously reviewed actions in instances where critical 
habitat is subsequently designated and the Federal agency has retained 
discretionary involvement or control over the action or such 
discretionary involvement or control is authorized by law. 
Consequently, some Federal agencies may request reinitiation of 
consultation or conference with us on actions for which formal 
consultation has been completed, if those actions may affect designated 
critical habitat, or adversely modify or destroy proposed critical 
    We may issue a formal conference report if requested by a Federal 
agency. Formal conference reports on proposed critical habitat contain 
an opinion that is prepared according to 50 CFR 402.14, as if critical 
habitat were designated. We may adopt the formal conference report as 
the biological opinion when the critical habitat is designated, if no 
substantial new information or changes in the action alter the content 
of the opinion (see 50 CFR 402.10(d)).
    Activities on private, State, county, or lands under local 
jurisdictions requiring a permit from a Federal agency, such as a 
permit from the Corps under section 404 of the Clean Water Act, a 
section 10(a)(1)(B) permit from the Service, or some other Federal 
action, including funding (e.g., National Guard Bureau or FAA funding), 
will continue to be subject to the section 7 consultation process. 
Federal actions not affecting listed species or critical habitat and 
actions on non-Federal and private lands that are not federally funded, 
authorized, or permitted do not require section 7 consultation.
    Section 4(b)(8) of the Act requires us to evaluate briefly and 
describe in any proposed or final regulation that designates critical 
habitat those activities involving a Federal action that may adversely 
modify such habitat or that may be affected by such designation. 
Activities that may destroy or adversely modify critical habitat 
include those that appreciably reduce the value of critical habitat for 
both the survival and recovery of Holocarpha macradenia. Within 
critical habitat, this pertains only to those areas containing the 
primary constituent elements. We note that such activities may also 
jeopardize the continued existence of the species.
    To properly portray the effects of critical habitat designation, we 
must first compare the section 7 requirements for actions that may 
affect critical habitat with the requirements for actions that may 
affect a listed species. Section 7 prohibits actions funded, 
authorized, or carried out by Federal agencies from jeopardizing the 
continued existence of a listed species or destroying or adversely 
modifying the listed species' critical habitat. Actions likely to 
``jeopardize the continued existence'' of a species are those that 
would appreciably reduce the likelihood of the species' survival and 
recovery. Actions likely to ``destroy or adversely modify'' critical 
habitat are those that would appreciably reduce the value of critical 
habitat for the survival and recovery of the listed species.
    Common to both definitions is an appreciable detrimental effect on 
both survival and recovery of a listed species. Given the similarity of 
these definitions, actions likely to destroy or adversely modify 
critical habitat would almost always result in jeopardy to the species 
concerned, particularly when the species is present in the area of the 
proposed action. When the species is present in an area, designation of 
critical habitat for Holocarpha macradenia is not likely to result in 
regulatory requirements above those already in place due to the 
presence of the listed species. When the species is not present in an 
area, designation of critical habitat for Holocarpha macradenia may 
result in an additional regulatory burden when a federal nexus exists.
    Activities that, when carried out, funded, or authorized by a 
Federal agency, may directly or indirectly destroy or adversely modify 
critical habitat for Holocarpha macradenia include, but are not limited 
    (1) Activities that alter watershed characteristics in ways that 
would appreciably alter or reduce the quality or quantity of surface 
and subsurface flow of water needed to maintain the coastal terrace 
prairie habitat. Such activities adverse to Holocarpha macradenia could 
include, but are not limited to, maintaining an unnatural fire regime 
either through fire suppression or prescribed fires that are too 
frequent or poorly-timed; residential and

[[Page 57536]]

commercial development, including road building and golf course 
installations; agricultural activities, including orchardry, 
viticulture, row crops, and livestock grazing; and vegetation 
manipulation such as harvesting firewood in the watershed upslope from 
H. macradenia;
    (2) Activities that appreciably degrade or destroy coastal terrace 
prairie habitat, including but not limited to livestock grazing, 
clearing, discing, introducing or encouraging the spread of nonnative 
species, and heavy recreational use. As noted earlier in the rule, some 
form of grazing may be helpful if it maintains open habitat and 
decreases competition from other species.
    Designation of critical habitat could affect the following agencies 
and/or actions: development on private lands requiring permits from 
Federal agencies, such as 404 permits from the U.S. Army Corps of 
Engineers or permits from other Federal agencies such as Housing and 
Urban Development, California Army National Guard activities funded by 
the National Guard Bureau on their lands or lands under their 
jurisdiction, activities of the Federal Aviation Authority on their 
lands or lands under their jurisdiction, the release or authorization 
of release of biological control agents by the U.S. Department of 
Agriculture, regulation of activities affecting point source pollution 
discharges into waters of the United States by the Environmental 
Protection Agency under section 402 of the Clean Water Act, 
construction of communication sites licensed by the Federal 
Communications Commission, watershed management activities of the 
Natural Resource Conservation Service, and authorization of Federal 
grants or loans. Where federally listed wildlife species occur on 
private lands proposed for development, any habitat conservation plans 
submitted by the applicant to secure a permit to take according to 
section 10(a)(1)(B) of the Act would be subject to the section 7 
consultation process. Several other species that are listed under the 
Act occur in the same general areas as Holocarpha macradenia. Ohlone 
tiger beetle (Ohlone cicendela) also occurs in grassland habitats, and 
is in close proximity to H. macradenia in the Rodeo Gulch unit. Two 
amphibious species, the California red-legged frog (Rana aurora 
draytonii) and the Santa Cruz long-toed salamander (Ambystoma 
macrodactylum croceum) occur in wetlands and adjacent uplands in the 
Watsonville unit. The Alameda whipsnake (Masticophis lateralis 
euryxanthus) occurs within the Mezue unit in Contra Costa County.
    If you have questions regarding whether specific activities will 
likely constitute adverse modification of critical habitat, contact the 
Field Supervisor, Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office (see ADDRESSES 
section). Requests for copies of the regulations on listed wildlife and 
inquiries about prohibitions and permits may be addressed to the U.S. 
Fish and Wildlife Service, Portland Regional Office, 911 NE 11th 
Avenue, Portland, OR 97232-4181 (503/231-6131, FAX 503/231-6243).

Relationship to Habitat Conservation Plans and Other Planning 

    Currently, no habitat conservation plans (HCPs) exist that include 
Holocarpha macradenia as a covered species. In the event that future 
HCPs covering H. macradenia are developed within the boundaries of the 
designated critical habitat, we will work with applicants to ensure 
that the HCPs provide for protection and management of habitat areas 
essential for the conservation of this species. This will be 
accomplished by either directing development and habitat modification 
to nonessential areas, or appropriately modifying activities within 
essential habitat areas so that such activities will not adversely 
modify the primary constituent elements. The HCP development process 
would provide an opportunity for more intensive data collection and 
analysis regarding the use of particular habitat areas by H. 
macradenia. The process would also enable us to conduct detailed 
evaluations of the importance of such lands to the long-term survival 
of the species in the context of constructing a biologically configured 
system of interlinked habitat blocks. We will also provide technical 
assistance and work closely with applicants throughout the development 
of any future HCPs to identify lands essential for the long-term 
conservation of H. macradenia and appropriate management for those 
lands. The take minimization and mitigation measures provided under 
such HCPs would be expected to protect the essential habitat lands 
proposed as critical habitat in this rule.

Economic Analysis

    Section 4(b)(2) of the Act requires us to designate critical 
habitat on the basis of the best scientific and commercial information 
available and to consider the economic and other relevant impacts of 
designating a particular area as critical habitat. We may exclude areas 
from critical habitat upon a determination that the benefits of such 
exclusions outweigh the benefits of specifying such areas as critical 
habitat. We cannot exclude such areas from critical habitat when such 
exclusion will result in the extinction of the species. We will conduct 
an analysis of the economic impacts of designating these areas as 
critical habitat prior to a final determination. When completed, we 
will announce the availability of the draft economic analysis with a 
notice in the Federal Register, and we will open a 30-day public 
comment period on the draft economic analysis and proposed rule at that 

Public Comments Solicited

    We intend that any final action resulting from this proposal will 
be as accurate and as effective as possible. Therefore, we solicit 
comments or suggestions from the public, other concerned governmental 
agencies, the scientific community, industry, or any other interested 
party concerning this proposed rule. We particularly seek comments 
    (1) The reasons why any habitat should or should not be determined 
to be critical habitat as provided by section 4 of the Act, including 
whether the benefit of designation will outweigh any threats to the 
species due to designation;
    (2) Specific information on the amount and distribution of 
Holocarpha macradenia habitat, and what habitat is essential to the 
conservation of the species and why;
    (3) Land use designations and current or planned activities in the 
subject areas and their possible impacts on proposed critical habitat;
    (4) Any foreseeable economic or other impacts resulting from the 
proposed designation of critical habitat, in particular, any impacts on 
small entities or families;
    (5) Economic and other values associated with designating critical 
habitat for Holocarpha macradenia such as those derived from non-
consumptive uses (e.g., hiking, camping, bird-watching, enhanced 
watershed protection, improved air quality, increased soil retention, 
``existence values'', and reductions in administrative costs); and
    (6) Whether our approach to critical habitat designation could be 
improved or modified in any way to provide for greater public 
participation and understanding, or to assist us in accommodating 
public concern and comments.
    If you wish to comment, you may submit your comments and materials 
concerning this proposal by any one of several methods: (1) You may 
submit written comments and information to the Field Supervisor at the 

[[Page 57537]]

provided in the ADDRESSES section above; (2) You may also comment via 
the electronic mail (e-mail) to fw1sctarplant@r1.fws.gov. Please submit 
e-mail comments as an ASCII file avoiding the use of special characters 
and any form of encryption. Please also include ``Attn: [1018-AG73] and 
your name and return address in your e-mail message.'' If you do not 
receive a confirmation from the system that we have received your e-
mail message, contact us directly by calling our Ventura Fish and 
Wildlife Office at phone number 805/644-1766. Please note that the 
Internet address ``fw1sctarplant@r1.fws.gov'' will be closed out at the 
termination of the public comment period; and (3) You may hand-deliver 
comments to our Ventura office at 2493 Portola Road, Suite B, Ventura, 
    Our practice is to make comments, including names and home 
addresses of respondents, available for public review during regular 
business hours. Individual respondents may request that we withhold 
their home address from the rulemaking record, which we will honor to 
the extent allowable by law. In some circumstances, we would withhold 
from the rulemaking record a respondent's identity, as allowable by 
law. If you wish us to withhold your name and/or address, you must 
state this prominently at the beginning of your comment. However, we 
will not consider anonymous comments. To the extent consistent with 
applicable law, we will make all submissions from organizations or 
businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as 
representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, available 
for public inspection in their entirety. Comments and materials 
received will be available for public inspection, by appointment, 
during normal business hours at the above address.

Peer Review

    In accordance with our policy published on July 1, 1994 (59 FR 
34270), we will solicit the expert opinions of three appropriate and 
independent specialists regarding this proposed rule. The purpose of 
such review is to ensure listing decisions are based on scientifically 
sound data, assumptions, and analyses. We will send these peer 
reviewers copies of this proposed rule immediately following 
publication in the Federal Register. We will invite these peer 
reviewers to comment, during the public comment period, on the specific 
assumptions and conclusions regarding the proposed listing and 
designation of critical habitat.
    We will consider all comments and information received during the 
60-day comment period on this proposed rule during preparation of a 
final rulemaking. Accordingly, the final determination may differ from 
this proposal.

Public Hearings

    The Act provides for one or more public hearing on this proposal, 
if requested. Requests for public hearings must be made within 45 days 
of the date of publication of this proposal within the Federal 
Register. We will schedule public hearings on this proposal, if any are 
requested, and announce the dates, times, and places of those hearings 
in the Federal Register and local newspapers at least 15 days prior to 
the first hearing.

Clarity of the Rule

    Executive Order 12866 requires each agency to write regulations and 
notices that are easy to understand. We invite your comments on how to 
make this proposed rule easier to understand, including answers to 
questions such as the following: (1) Are the requirements in the 
proposed rule clearly stated? (2) Does the proposed rule contain 
technical jargon that interferes with the clarity? (3) Does the format 
of the proposed rule (grouping and order of the sections, use of 
headings, paragraphing, etc.) aid or reduce its clarity? (4) Is the 
description of the proposed rule in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION 
section of the preamble helpful in understanding the proposed rule? 
What else could we do to make this proposed rule easier to understand?
    Send a copy of any comments that concern how we could make this 
rule easier to understand to the office identified in the ADDRESSES 
section at the beginning of this document.

Required Determinations

Regulatory Planning and Review

    In accordance with Executive Order (EO) 12866, this document is a 
significant rule and was reviewed by the Office of Management and 
Budget (OMB) in accordance with the four criteria discussed below.
    (a) In the economic analysis, we will determine whether this rule 
will have an annual economic effect of $100 million or more or 
adversely affect an economic sector, productivity, jobs, the 
environment, or other units of government.
    Holocarpha macradenia was listed as endangered on March 20, 2000. 
Since that time we have conducted, and will continue to conduct, formal 
and informal section 7 consultations with other Federal agencies to 
ensure that their actions will not jeopardize the continued existence 
of H. macradenia. Under the Act, critical habitat may not be adversely 
modified by a Federal agency action; critical habitat does not impose 
any restrictions on non-Federal persons unless they are conducting 
activities funded or otherwise sponsored or permitted by a Federal 
agency (see Table 2). Section 7 of the Act requires Federal agencies to 
ensure that they do not jeopardize the continued existence of the 
species. Based on our experience with the species and its needs, in 
areas where the species is present any Federal action or authorized 
action that could potentially cause an adverse modification of the 
proposed critical habitat would also likely be considered as jeopardy 
to the species under the Act.
    Accordingly, in areas where the species is present, we do not 
expect the designation of critical habitat to have any incremental 
impacts on what actions may or may not be conducted by Federal agencies 
or non-Federal persons that receive Federal authorization or funding. 
The designation of areas as critical habitat where section 7 
consultations would not have occurred but for the critical habitat 
designation, may have impacts on what actions may or may not be 
conducted by Federal agencies or non-Federal persons who receive 
Federal authorization or funding that are not attributable to the 
species listing. We will evaluate any impact through our economic 
analysis (under section 4 of the Act: see Economic Analysis section of 
this rule) Non-federal persons who do not have a Federal sponsorship of 
their actions are not restricted by the designation of critical 
    (b) This rule is not expected to create inconsistencies with other 
agencies' actions. As discussed above, Federal agencies have been 
required to ensure that their actions do not jeopardize the continued 
existence of Holocarpha macradenia since its listing in 2000. The 
prohibition against adverse modification of critical habitat is 
expected to impose few, if any, additional restrictions to those that 
currently exist when the species is present. We will evaluate any 
impact of designating areas where Section 7 consultations would not 
have occurred but for the critical habitat designation through our 
economic analysis. Because of the potential impacts on other Federal 
agency activities, will continue to review this proposed action for any 
inconsistencies with other Federal agency actions.

[[Page 57538]]

    (c) This proposed rule, if made final, is not expected to 
significantly impact entitlements, grants, user fees, loan programs, or 
the rights and obligations of their recipients. Federal agencies are 
currently required to ensure that their activities do not jeopardize 
the continued existence of the species, and, as discussed above, we do 
not anticipate that the adverse modification prohibition resulting from 
critical habitat designation will have any incremental effects in areas 
where the species is present on any Federal entitlement, grant, or loan 
programs. We will evaluate any impact of designating areas where 
Section 7 consultations would not have occurred but for the critical 
habitat designation through our economic analysis.
    (d) OMB has determined that this rule may raise novel legal or 
policy issues and, as a result, this rule has undergone OMB review.

               Table 2.--Impacts of Holocarpha Macradenia Listing and Critical Habitat Designation
                                                                                         Additional activities
                                        Activities potentially affected by species      potentially affected by
      Categories of activities                         listing only                        critical habitat
                                                                                            designation \1\
Federal Activities Potentially       Activities conducted by the Army Corps of        Activities by these
 Affected \2\.                        Engineers, the National Guard Bureau, the        Federal Agencies in
                                      Federal Aviation Authority, the Natural          designated areas where
                                      Resource Conservation Service, the Department    section 7 consultations
                                      of Housing and Urban Development, and any        would not have occurred
                                      other Federal Agencies, including but are not    but for the critical
                                      limited to (1) altering watershed                habitat designation.
                                      characteristics in ways that would appreciably
                                      alter or reduce the quality or quantity of
                                      surface and subsurface flow of water need to
                                      maintain the coastal terrace prairie habitat,
                                      thus adversely affecting the species and (2)
                                      appreciably degrade or destroy coastal terrace
                                      prairie habitat.
Private or other non-Federal         Activities that require a Federal action         Funding, authorization, or
 Activities Potentially Affected      (permit, authorization, or funding) and may      permitting actions by
 \3\.                                 remove or destroy habitat for Holocarpha         Federal Agencies in
                                      macradenia by mechanical, chemical, or other     designated areas where
                                      means or appreciably decrease habitat value or   section 7 consultations
                                      quality through indirect effects (e.g., edge     would not have occurred
                                      effects, invasion of exotic plants or animals,   but for the critical
                                      fragmentation of habitat).                       habitat designation.
\1\ This column represents activities potentially affected by the critical habitat designation in addition to
  those activities potentially affected by listing the species.
\2\ Activities initiated by a Federal agency.
\3\ Activities initiated by a private or other non-Federal entity that may need Federal authorization or

Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.)

    Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., as 
amended by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Act (SBREFA) of 
1996), whenever an agency is required to publish a notice of rulemaking 
for any proposed or final rule, it must prepare and make available for 
public comment a regulatory flexibility analysis that describes the 
effects of the rule on small entities (i.e., small businesses, small 
organizations, and small government jurisdictions). However, no 
regulatory flexibility analysis is required if the head of the agency 
certifies the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities. SBREFA amended the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act to require Federal agencies to provide a statement of 
the factual basis for certifying that rule will not have a significant 
economic effect on a substantial number of small entities. SBREFA also 
amended the RFA to require a certification statement. In today's rule, 
we are certifying that the rule will not have a significant effect on a 
substantial number of small entities. The following discussion explains 
our rationale.
    Small entities include small organizations, such as independent 
non-profit organizations, and small governmental jurisdictions, 
including school boards and city and town governments that serve fewer 
than 50,000 residents, as well as small businesses. Small businesses 
include manufacturing and mining concerns with fewer than 500 
employees, wholesale trade entities with fewer than 100 employees, 
retail and service businesses with less than $5 million in annual 
sales, general and heavy construction businesses with less than $27.5 
million in annual business, special trade contractors doing less than 
$11.5 million in annual business, and agricultural businesses with 
annual sales less than $750,000. To determine if potential economic 
impacts to these small entities are significant, we consider the types 
of activities that might trigger regulatory impacts under this rule as 
well as the types of project modifications that may result. In general, 
the term significant economic impact is meant to apply to a typical 
small business firm's business operations.
    To determine if the rule would affect a substantial number of small 
entities, we consider the number of small entities affected within 
particular types of economic activities (e.g., housing development, 
grazing, oil and gas production, timber harvesting, etc.). We apply the 
``substantial number'' test individually to each industry to determine 
if certification is appropriate. In some circumstances, especially with 
proposed critical habitat designations of very limited extent, we may 
aggregate across all industries and consider whether the total number 
of small entities affected is substantial. In estimating the numbers of 
small entities potentially affected, we also consider whether their 
activities have any Federal involvement; some kinds of activities are 
unlikely to have any Federal involvement and so will not be affected by 
critical habitat designation.
    Designation of critical habitat only affects activities conducted, 
funded, or permitted by Federal agencies; non-Federal activities are 
not affected by the designation. In areas where the species is present, 
Federal agencies are already required to consult with us under section 
7 of the Act on activities that they fund, permit, or implement that 
may affect Holocarpha macradenia. If this critical habitat designation 
is finalized, Federal agencies must also consult with us if their 
activities may affect designated critical habitat. However, we do not 
believe this will result in any additional regulatory burden on Federal 
agencies or their applicants because consultation would already be 
required due to the presence of the listed species, and the duty to

[[Page 57539]]

avoid adverse modification of critical habitat would not trigger 
additional regulatory impacts beyond the duty to avoid jeopardizing the 
    Even if the duty to avoid adverse modification does not trigger 
additional regulatory impacts in areas where the species is present, 
designation of critical habitat could result in an additional economic 
burden on small entities due to the requirement to reinitiate 
consultation for ongoing Federal activities. However, we have only 
completed a single informal conference on Holocarpha macradenia since 
it was proposed for listing. Since it was determined that the project 
is not likely to adversely affect H. macradenia, we did not need to 
convert the informal conference to a biological opinion. As a result, 
the requirement to reinitiate consultation for ongoing projects will 
not affect a substantial number of small entities.
    When the species is clearly not present, designation of critical 
habitat could trigger additional review of Federal activities under 
section 7 of the Act. Because Holocarpha macradenia has been listed 
only a relatively short time and there have been few activities with 
Federal involvement in these areas during this time, there is not a 
detailed history of consultations based on the listed of this species. 
As mentioned above, we have conducted only a single, informal 
conference, and no formal consultations at all. As a result, we can not 
easily identify future consultations that may be due to the listing of 
the species or the increment of additional consultations that may be 
required by this critical habitat designation. Therefore, for the 
purposes of this review and certification under the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act, we are assuming that any future consultations in the 
area proposed as critical habitat will be due to the critical habitat 
    Outside the existing developed areas, the projected land uses for 
the majority of the proposed critical habitat consist of recreation, 
military storage, housing development, agriculture, cattle grazing, 
conservation lands for natural resource values, and possible airport 
expansion. Of the 11 critical habitat units identified in this proposed 
rule, 9 consist of fewer than 10 parcels each, and 6 of these are only 
3 parcels or fewer. Future development is not likely in six of these 
nine units because they are primarily park lands or lands dedicated to 
conservation. Future development has already been permitted in the 
remaining three of these nine units; in these cases, we are 
coordinating with the appropriate State, County, and City agencies. We 
do not anticipate that this designation of critical habitat, if 
finalized, will result in any additional regulatory impacts on 
development projects already permitted in these units, and we are not 
aware of any Federal activities in these units that would require 
consultation or reinitiation of already-completed consultations for 
ongoing projects. As these three units are small (35 acres or less), it 
is unlikely that additional development beyond that already permitted 
could occur here.
    The two remaining units are significantly larger in acreage and 
therefore encompass a more diverse array of possible future land uses. 
At the current time, the 1,110-acre Casserly unit consists of lands 
primarily designated for non-commercial agriculture, and includes hobby 
farms, rural residences, cattle grazing, and small animal husbandry. It 
also includes two golf courses. Lands within this unit may be developed 
in the future, although we are not aware of any plans for development 
at this time. The 1,635-acre Watsonville unit primarily consists of 
lands zoned for commercial agriculture, including row crops as well as 
cattle grazing. The remaining portion of the unit is within the city 
limits of the City of Watsonville. We are aware of several possible 
future projects in this unit, including airport expansion, a high 
school development, FHWA highway projects (such as rebuilding bridges 
or widening freeways), and housing development. Future development 
projects in this area will also be affected by coastal zone permitting 
and other State and local planning and zoning requirements.
    Several of these projects may have Federal involvement; including 
the airport expansion that is being funded and permitted by the FAA; a 
high school development that may recommend section 404 authorizations 
from the ACOE and an incidental take permit, pursuant to section 
10(a)(1)(B) of the Act, from the Service; housing developments that may 
require 404 authorizations; and watershed and restoration management 
projects sponsored by NRCS. The requirement in section 7(a)(2) to avoid 
jeopardizing listed species and destroying or adversely modifying 
designated critical habitat may result in Federal agencies requiring 
certain modifications to proposed projects.
    In general, two different mechanisms in section 7 consultations 
could lead to additional regulatory requirements. First, if we 
conclude, in a biological opinion, that a proposed action is likely to 
jeopardize the continued existence of a species or adversely modify its 
critical habitat, we can offer ``reasonable and prudent alternatives.'' 
Reasonable and prudent alternatives are alternative actions that can be 
implemented in a manner consistent with the scope of the Federal 
agency's legal authority and jurisdiction, that are economically and 
technologically feasible, and that would avoid jeopardizing the 
continued existence of listed species or resulting in adverse 
modification of critical habitat. A Federal agency and an applicant may 
elect to implement a reasonable and prudent alternative associated with 
a biological opinion that has found jeopardy or adverse modification of 
critical habitat. An agency or applicant could alternatively choose to 
seek an exemption from the requirements of the Act or proceed without 
implementing the reasonable and prudent alternative. However, unless an 
exemption were obtained, the Federal agency or applicant would be at 
risk of violating section 7(a)(2) of the Act if it chose to proceed 
without implementing the reasonable and prudent alternatives. Secondly, 
if we find that a proposed action is not likely to jeopardize the 
continued existence of a listed animal species, we may identify 
reasonable and prudent measures designed to minimize the amount or 
extent of take and require the Federal agency or applicant to implement 
such measures through non-discretionary terms and conditions. However, 
the Act does not prohibit the take of listed plant species or require 
terms and conditions to minimize adverse effects to critical habitat. 
We may also identify discretionary conservation recommendations 
designed to minimize or avoid the adverse effects of a proposed action 
on listed species or critical habitat, help implement recovery plans, 
or to develop information that could contribute to the recovery of the 
    Based on our experience with section 7 consultations for all listed 
species, virtually all projects-including those that, in their initial 
proposed form, would result in jeopardy or adverse modification 
determinations in section 7 consultations-can be implemented 
successfully with, at most, the adoption of reasonable and prudent 
alternatives. These measures, by definition, must be economically 
feasible and within the scope of authority of the Federal agency 
involved in the consultation. As we have a very limited consultation 
history for Holocarpha macradenia, we can only describe the general 
kinds of actions that may be identified in future reasonable and 
prudent alternatives. These are based on our understanding of

[[Page 57540]]

the needs of the species and the threats it faces, especially as 
described in the final listing rule and in this proposed critical 
habitat designation, as well as our experience with similar listed 
plants in California. In addition, the State of California listed 
Holocarpha macradenia as an endangered species under the California 
Endangered Species Act in 1979, and we have also considered the kinds 
of actions required through State consultations for this species. The 
kinds of actions that may be included in future reasonable and prudent 
alternatives include conservation set-asides, management of competing 
non-native species, restoration of degraded habitat, construction of 
protective fencing, and regular monitoring. These measures are not 
likely to result in a significant economic impact to project 
    As required under section 4(b)(2) of the Act, we will conduct an 
analysis of the potential economic impacts of this proposed critical 
habitat designation, and will make that analysis available for public 
review and comment before finalizing this designation. However, court 
deadlines require us to publish this proposed rule before the economic 
analysis can be completed. In the absence of this economic analysis, we 
have reviewed our previously published analyses of the likely economic 
impacts of designating critical habitat for similar plant species found 
in similar areas, especially Chorizanthe robusta var. hartwegii (Scotts 
Valley spineflower). Like Holocarpha macradenia, C. robusta var. 
hartwegii is a native species restricted to certain specific habitat 
types along the central coast of California; the two species face 
similar threats, and require similar protective and conservation 
measures. Several of the units proposed as critical habitat for C. 
robusta var. hartwegii will likely face the same kinds of future land 
uses, especially residential development, that may occur in parts of 
the area proposed as critical habitat for H. macradenia. Our high-end 
estimate of the economic effects of designating one of the units ranged 
from $82,500 to $287,500 over ten years.
    In summary, we have considered whether this proposed rule would 
result in a significant economic effect on a substantial number of 
small entities. It would not affect a substantial number of small 
entities. The entire designation involves fewer than 180 parcels; many 
of these parcels are located in units where likely future land uses are 
not expected to result in Federal involvement or section 7 
consultations. Six of the 11 critical habitat units consist of park 
lands or lands dedicated to conservation, and future development is 
already permitted in 3 small units, with additional Federal involvement 
unlikely. Even in the other units, Federal involvement-- and thus 
section 7 consultations, the only trigger for economic impact under 
this rule--would be limited to a subset of the area proposed; land use 
in one of these units is largely devoted to non-commercial agriculture, 
where there is unlikely to be any Federal involvement. In one unit, 
Federal activities could include Corps of Engineers permits, permits we 
may issue under section 10(a)(1)(B) of the Act, FAA funding and 
permitting of airport improvements, and voluntary watershed management 
and restoration projects funded by NRCS. This rule would result in 
required project modifications only when proposed Federal activities 
would adversely modify critical habitat. While this may occur, it is 
not expected frequently enough to affect a substantial number of small 
entities. Even when it does occur, we do not expect it to result in a 
significant economic impact, as the measures included in reasonable and 
prudent alternatives must be economically feasible and consistent with 
the proposed action. We anticipate that the kinds of reasonable and 
prudent alternatives we would provide can usually be implemented at 
very low cost. Therefore, we are certifying that the proposed 
designation of critical habitat for Holocarpha macradenia will not have 
a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities. An initial regulatory flexibility analysis is not required.

Executive Order 13211

    On May 18, 2001, the President issued an Executive Order (E.O. 
13211) on regulations that significantly affect energy supply, 
distribution, and use. Executive Order 13211 requires agencies to 
prepare Statements of Energy Effects when undertaking certain actions. 
Although this rule is a significant regulatory action under Executive 
Order 12866, it is not expected to significantly affect energy 
supplies, distribution, or use. Therefore, this action is not a 
significant energy action and no Statement of Energy Effects is 

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (2 U.S.C. 1501 et seq.)

    In accordance with the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (2 U.S.C. 1501, 
et seq.):
    (a) This rule, as proposed, will not ``significantly or uniquely'' 
affect small governments. A Small Government Agency Plan is not 
required. Small governments will be affected only to the extent that 
any programs having Federal funds, permits, or other authorization. Any 
such activity will require that the Federal agency ensure that the 
action will not adversely modify or destroy designated critical 
    (b) This rule, as proposed, will not produce a Federal mandate on 
State, local, or tribal governments or the private sector of $100 
million or greater in any year; that is, it is not a ``significant 
regulatory action'' under the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act. The 
designation of critical habitat imposes no obligations on State or 
local governments.


    In accordance with Executive Order 12630, this proposed rule does 
not have significant takings implications, and a takings implication 
assessment is not required. This rule would not take private property. 
As discussed above, the designation of critical habitat affects only 
Federal agency actions; it does not provide additional protection for 
the species on non-Federal lands or regarding actions that lack any 
Federal involvement. Furthermore, the Act provides mechanisms, through 
section 7 consultation, to resolve apparent conflicts between proposed 
Federal actions, including Federal funding or permitting of actions on 
private land, and the conservation of the species, including avoiding 
the destruction or adverse modification of designated critical habitat. 
The species was listed on March 20, 2000. We fully expect that, through 
section 7 consultation, such projects can be implemented consistent 
with the conservation of the species; therefore, this rule would not 
result in a takings.


    In accordance with Executive Order 13132, the rule does not have 
significant Federalism effects. A Federalism assessment is not 
required. In keeping with Department of the Interior policy, we 
requested information from, and coordinated development of this 
critical habitat designation, with appropriate State resource agencies 
in California. Where the species is present, the designation of 
critical habitat imposes no additional restrictions to those currently 
in place, and therefore, has little incremental impact on State and 
local governments and their activities. The designations may have some 
benefit to these governments in that the areas essential to the 
conservation of these species are more clearly defined, and the primary 
constituent elements of the habitat necessary to the survival of the 
species are identified. While this

[[Page 57541]]

definition and identification does not alter where and what federally 
sponsored activities may occur, it may assist these local governments 
in long range planning (rather than waiting for case-by-case section 7 
consultation to occur).

Civil Justice Reform

    In accordance with Executive Order 12988, the Office of the 
Solicitor has determined that this rule does not unduly burden the 
judicial system and does meet the requirements of sections 3(a) and 
3(b)(2) of the Order. We are proposing to designate critical habitat in 
accordance with the provisions of the Endangered Species Act. The rule 
uses standard property descriptions and identifies the primary 
constituent elements within the designated areas to assist the public 
in understanding the habitat needs of Holocarpha macradenia.

Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.)

    This rule does not contain any new collections of information that 
require approval by OMB under the Paperwork Reduction Act. This rule 
will not impose recordkeeping or reporting requirements on State or 
local governments, individuals, businesses, or organizations. 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.

National Environmental Policy Act

    We have determined we do not need to prepare an Environmental 
Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement as defined by the 
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 in connection with 
regulations adopted pursuant to section 4(a) of the Endangered Species 
Act, as amended. We published a notice outlining our reason for this 
determination in the Federal Register on October 25, 1983 (48 FR 
49244). This proposed rule does not constitute a major Federal action 
significantly affecting the quality of the human environment.

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), E.O. 13175, and 512 DM 2, we readily 
acknowledge our responsibility to communicate meaningfully with 
federally recognized Tribes on a Government-to-Government basis. We 
have determined that there are no Tribal lands essential for the 
conservation of Holocarpha macradenia because they do not support 
populations, nor do they provide essential habitat. Therefore, critical 
habitat for Holocarpha macradenia has not been designated on Tribal 

References Cited

    A complete list of all references cited herein, as well as others, 
is available upon request from the Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office 
(see ADDRESSES section).


    The author of this proposed rule is Constance Rutherford (see 
ADDRESSES section).

List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 17

    Endangered and threatened species, Exports, Imports, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements, and Transportation.

Proposed Regulation Promulgation

    Accordingly, we propose to amend part 17, subchapter B of chapter 
I, title 50 of the Code of Federal Regulations, as set forth below:


    1. The authority citation for part 17 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1361-1407; 16 U.S.C. 1531-1544; 16 U.S.C. 
4201-4245; Pub. L. 99-625, 100 Stat. 3500, unless otherwise noted.

    2. In Sec. 17.12(h) revise the entry for Holocarpha macradenia 
under ``FLOWERING PLANTS'' to read as follows:

Sec. 17.12  Endangered and threatened plants.

* * * * *
    (h) * * *

----------------------------------------------------------    Historic Range            Family              Status       When     Critical     Special
          Scientific name                Common name                                                                    listed    habitat       rules

                *                   *                   *                   *                   *                   *                   *
Holocarpha macradenia.............  Santa Cruz tarplant..  U.S.A. (CA).........  Asteraceae-Sunflower  T                 690       17.96(b)           NA

                 *                   *                   *                   *                   *                   *                  *

    3. In Sec. 17.96, as proposed to be amended at 65 FR 66865, 
November 7, 2000, add critical habitat for the Santa Cruz tarplant 
(Holocarpha macradenia) under paragraph (b) by adding an entry for 
Holocarpha macradenia in alphabetical order under Family Asteraceae to 
read as follows:

Sec. 17.96  Critical habitat--plants.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
Family Asteraceae: Holocarpha macradenia (Santa Cruz tarplant)
    (1) Critical habitat units are depicted for Contra Costa, Santa 
Cruz, and Monterey counties, California, on the maps below.
    (2) The primary constituent elements of critical habitat for 
Holocarpha macradenia are the habitat components that provide:
    (i) Soils associated with coastal terraces prairies, including the 
Watsonville, Tierra, Elkhorn, Santa Inez, and Pinto series.
    (ii) Plant communities that support associated species, including 
native grasses such as Nassella sp.(needlegrass) and Danthonia 
californica (California oatgrass); native herbaceous species such as 
members of the genus Hemizonia (other tarplants), Perideridia gairdneri 
(Gairdner's yampah), Plagiobothrys diffusus (San Francisco popcorn 
flower), and Trifolium buckwestiorum (Santa Cruz clover); and
    (iii) Physical processes, particularly soils and hydrologic 
processes, that maintain the soil structure and hydrology that produce 
the seasonally

[[Page 57542]]

saturated soils characteristic of Holocarpha macradenia habitat.
    (3) Critical habitat does not include existing features and 
structures, such as buildings, roads, aqueducts, railroads, airport 
runways and buildings, other paved areas, lawns, and other urban 
landscaped areas not containing one or more of the primary constituent 
    (4) Critical Habitat Map Units.
    (i) Data layers defining map units were created on a base of USGS 
7.5' quadrangles obtained from the State of California's Stephen P. 
Teale Data Center. Proposed critical habitat units were then mapped 
using Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) coordinates.
    (ii) Map 1--Index map follows:

[[Page 57543]]

    (5) Unit A: Mezue, Contra Costa County, California. (i) From USGS 
1:24,000 quadrangle map Richmond. Lands bounded by the following UTM 
zone 10 NAD83 coordinates (E, N). 562047, 4199460; 562049, 4199550; 
562048, 4199580; 562054, 4199610; 562056, 4199670; 562069, 4199730; 
562084, 4199760; 562114, 4199790; 562150, 4199790; 562185, 4199800; 
562230, 4199800; 562270, 4199800; 562294, 4199800; 562324, 4199800; 
562357, 4199820; 562382, 4199840; 562403, 4199860; 562461, 4199870; 
562543, 4199840; 562574, 4199820; 562611, 4199790; 562698, 4199720; 
562712, 4199700; 562718, 4199690; 562719, 4199680; 562717, 4199670; 
562707, 4199640; 562700, 4199620; 562694, 4199600; 562685, 4199580; 
562679, 4199550; 562682, 4199490; 562679, 4199440; 562678, 4199390; 
562675, 4199340; 562681, 4199300; 562686, 4199190; 562673, 4199160; 
562668, 4199110; 562669, 4199070; 562669, 4199000; 562670, 4198970; 
562672, 4198950; 562679, 4198910; 562681, 4198870; 562660, 4198860; 
562643, 4198840; 562615, 4198840; 562594, 4198820; 562557, 4198800; 
562531, 4198790; 562496, 4198780; 562460, 4198790; 562413, 4198780; 
562366, 4198800; 562309, 4198810; 562236, 4198870; 562188, 4198890; 
562128, 4198910; 562101, 4198940; 562096, 4198950; 562091, 4198960; 
562077, 4198960; 562060, 4198960; 562041, 4198970; 562044, 4198990; 
562051, 4199030; 562057, 4199060; 562054, 4199070; 562038, 4199090; 
562037, 4199110; 562043, 4199130; 562061, 4199170; 562065, 4199190; 
562068, 4199230; 562065, 4199250; 562048, 4199280; 562035, 4199310; 
562027, 4199340; 562028, 4199370; 562047, 4199460.
    (ii) Map 2-Unit A follows:

[[Page 57544]]


[[Page 57545]]

    Unit B: Graham Hill, Santa Cruz County, California. (i) From USGS 
1:24,000 quadrangle map Felton. Lands bounded by the following UTM zone 
10 NAD83 coordinates (E, N). 585905, 4096930; 585915, 4096850; 585930, 
4096130; 585912, 4096110; 585868, 4096100; 585833, 4096130; 585817, 
4096180; 585819, 4096240; 585840, 4096280; 585850, 4096320; 585837, 
4096350; 585810, 4096390; 585749, 4096430; 585731, 4096480; 585728, 
4096550; 585726, 4096610; 585724, 4096750; 585723, 4096810; 585714, 
4096820; 585739, 4096850; 585791, 4096860; 585839, 4096880; 585905, 
    (ii) Map 3-Unit B follows:

[[Page 57546]]

    (7) Unit C: De Laveaga, Santa Cruz County, California. (i) From 
USGS 1:24,000 quadrangle map Santa Cruz. Lands bounded by the following 
UTM zone 10 NAD83 coordinates (E, N). 588439, 4094810; 588468, 4094810; 
588492, 4094800; 588510, 4094780; 588523, 4094760; 588532, 4094740; 
588530, 4094710; 588531, 4094670; 588529, 4094630; 588520, 4094580; 
588415, 4094570; 588408, 4094600; 588402, 4094620; 588400, 4094640; 
588399, 4094660; 588401, 4094690; 588406, 4094720; 588412, 4094740; 
588413, 4094770; 588416, 4094780; 588426, 4094800; 588439, 4094810.
    (ii) Map 4--Unit C follows:

[[Page 57547]]

    (8) Unit D: Arana Gulch, Santa Cruz County, California. From USGS 
1:24,000 quadrangle maps Santa Cruz and Soquel. Lands bounded by the 
following UTM zone 10 NAD83 coordinates (E, N). 589295, 4093310; 
589315, 4093270; 589338, 4093210; 589358, 4093170; 589399, 4093120; 
589404, 4093100; 589399, 4093030; 589401, 4092990; 589400, 4092940; 
589391, 4092900; 589386, 4092860; 589375, 4092830; 589353, 4092780; 
589340, 4092750; 589340, 4092730; 589325, 4092690; 589310, 4092640; 
589290, 4092600; 589272, 4092590; 589252, 4092570; 589238, 4092550; 
589229, 4092530; 589221, 4092500; 589195, 4092460; 589161, 4092490; 
589139, 4092530; 589120, 4092540; 589108, 4092540; 589092, 4092510; 
589057, 4092450; 589033, 4092400; 588999, 4092360; 588929, 4092350; 
588916, 4092360; 588894, 4092470; 588891, 4092560; 588890, 4092650; 
588919, 4092710; 588946, 4092730; 588980, 4092760; 589053, 4092880; 
589080, 4092950; 589119, 4093040; 589234, 4093080; 589178, 4093270; 
589181, 4093310; 589214, 4093320; 589245, 4093330; 589268, 4093330; 
589295, 4093310.
    (9) Unit E: Twin Lakes, Santa Cruz County, California. From USGS 
1:24,000 quadrangle map Soquel. Lands bounded by the following UTM zone 
10 NAD83 coordinates (E, N). 589964, 4091950; 589967, 4091930; 589964, 
4091890; 589918, 4091800; 589899, 4091780; 589871, 4091770; 589823, 
4091760; 589784, 4091760; 589744, 4091750; 589722, 4091750; 589692, 
4091760; 589667, 4091780; 589656, 4091770; 589640, 4091750; 589616, 
4091740; 589559, 4091710; 589532, 4091690; 589521, 4091660; 589521, 
4091640; 589522, 4091620; 589504, 4091610; 589489, 4091620; 589476, 
4091640; 589455, 4091700; 589450, 4091730; 589449, 4091770; 589458, 
4091800; 589472, 4091830; 589473, 4091840; 589465, 4091860; 589464, 
4091890; 589463, 4091900; 589482, 4091920; 589506, 4091940; 589522, 
4091950; 589964, 4091950.
    (10) Units D and E map. Map 5--Units D and E follow:

[[Page 57548]]



[[Page 57549]]

    (11) Unit F: Rodeo Gulch, Santa Cruz County, California. From USGS 
1:24,000 quadrangle map Soquel. Lands bounded by the following UTM zone 
10 NAD83 coordinates (E, N). 590971, 4094630; 590995, 4094740; 591007, 
4094780; 591037, 4094830; 591069, 4094860; 591095, 4094900; 591125, 
4094960; 591182, 4094940; 591196, 4094940; 591199, 4094950; 591207, 
4094980; 591216, 4095000; 591225, 4095030; 591220, 4095050; 591225, 
4095090; 591232, 4095130; 591241, 4095160; 591252, 4095180; 591265, 
4095180; 591291, 4095170; 591321, 4095140; 591353, 4095050; 591393, 
4094970; 591301, 4094960; 591293, 4094950; 591299, 4094910; 591300, 
4094850; 591293, 4094810; 591275, 4094750; 591252, 4094660; 591224, 
4094650; 591185, 4094630; 591097, 4094630; 590971, 4094630.
    (12) Unit G: Soquel, Santa Cruz County, California.
    (i) Soquel south area. From USGS 1:24,000 quadrangle maps Soquel 
and Laurel. Lands bounded by the following UTM zone 10 NAD83 
coordinates (E, N). 592076, 4095040; 592097, 4094850; 592304, 4094860; 
592315, 4094660; 592322, 4094620; 592334, 4094580; 592341, 4094510; 
592347, 4094490; 592354, 4094480; 592375, 4094440; 592378, 4094430; 
592380, 4094400; 592385, 4094380; 592406, 4094360; 592430, 4094320; 
592442, 4094310; 592460, 4094300; 592478, 4094290; 592491, 4094280; 
592494, 4094210; 592495, 4094190; 592491, 4094180; 592478, 4094180; 
592458, 4094180; 592452, 4094200; 592442, 4094200; 592326, 4094210; 
592311, 4094210; 592224, 4094110; 592216, 4094110; 592204, 4094110; 
592165, 4094130; 592161, 4094140; 592126, 4094560; 592123, 4094590; 
592117, 4094610; 592105, 4094630; 592087, 4094670; 592074, 4094690; 
592057, 4094720; 592047, 4094730; 592036, 4094730; 592032, 4094720; 
592036, 4094700; 592043, 4094680; 592047, 4094650; 592043, 4094610; 
592036, 4094550; 592000, 4094420; 591994, 4094390; 591987, 4094380; 
591973, 4094380; 591957, 4094380; 591944, 4094380; 591904, 4094420; 
591855, 4094440; 591853, 4094500; 591833, 4094500; 591696, 4094500; 
591696, 4094440; 591606, 4094490; 591597, 4094510; 591596, 4094520; 
591613, 4094650; 591617, 4094650; 591676, 4094660; 591718, 4094660; 
591751, 4094660; 591759, 4094670; 591757, 4094680; 591749, 4094680; 
591738, 4094690; 591704, 4094690; 591656, 4094710; 591651, 4094720; 
591651, 4094730; 591657, 4094740; 591711, 4094750; 591720, 4094740; 
591726, 4094730; 591736, 4094730; 591777, 4094730; 591790, 4094740; 
591797, 4094740; 591806, 4094750; 591819, 4094750; 591831, 4094750; 
591845, 4094740; 591856, 4094740; 591935, 4094740; 591946, 4094880; 
591956, 4094930; 591995, 4095060; 591998, 4095100; 592017, 4095090; 
592059, 4095060; 592076, 4095040.
    (ii) Soquel north area. From USGS 1:24,000 quadrangle maps Soquel 
and Laurel. Lands bounded by the following UTM zone 10 NAD83 
coordinates (E, N). 592050, 4095340; 592094, 4095290; 592102, 4095240; 
592112, 4095200; 592119, 4095200; 592130, 4095200; 592158, 4095210; 
592173, 4095220; 592180, 4095230; 592193, 4095270; 592211, 4095320; 
592218, 4095330; 592227, 4095330; 592257, 4095330; 592275, 4095330; 
592299, 4095330; 592393, 4095340; 592404, 4095330; 592411, 4095220; 
592423, 4095180; 592425, 4095140; 592414, 4095130; 592381, 4095120; 
592290, 4095120; 592177, 4095120; 592165, 4095120; 592159, 4095120; 
592149, 4095110; 592138, 4095100; 592129, 4095090; 592116, 4095090; 
592109, 4095100; 592041, 4095190; 592009, 4095220; 591986, 4095240; 
591980, 4095270; 591970, 4095360; 591971, 4095360; 591973, 4095370; 
591995, 4095390; 592012, 4095400; 592021, 4095410; 592031, 4095400; 
592046, 4095390; 592050, 4095340.
    (13) Units F and G map. Map 6--Units F and G follows:

[[Page 57550]]


[[Page 57551]]

    (14) Unit H: Porter Gulch., Santa Cruz County, California. (i) From 
USGS 1:24,000 quadrangle maps Soquel and Laurel. Lands bounded by the 
following UTM zone 10 NAD83 coordinates (E, N). 594615, 4095600; 
594643, 4095630; 594684, 4095640; 594774, 4095680; 594850, 4095720; 
594898, 4095750; 594929, 4095780; 594958, 4095820; 595017, 4095780; 
595008, 4095760; 594990, 4095720; 594993, 4095700; 595020, 4095680; 
595057, 4095630; 595081, 4095610; 595068, 4095600; 595061, 4095590; 
595045, 4095580; 595013, 4095550; 594989, 4095540; 594967, 4095530; 
594929, 4095520; 594917, 4095520; 594907, 4095500; 594893, 4095470; 
594857, 4095380; 594846, 4095340; 594843, 4095320; 594842, 4095290; 
594839, 4095250; 594838, 4095180; 594835, 4095150; 594828, 4095130; 
594816, 4095120; 594800, 4095120; 594785, 4095120; 594772, 4095130; 
594765, 4095130; 594760, 4095140; 594758, 4095150; 594760, 4095170; 
594766, 4095230; 594779, 4095310; 594819, 4095420; 594856, 4095500; 
594867, 4095520; 594869, 4095540; 594863, 4095550; 594848, 4095560; 
594837, 4095550; 594833, 4095540; 594828, 4095540; 594810, 4095500; 
594776, 4095470; 594747, 4095440; 594718, 4095410; 594689, 4095370; 
594669, 4095370; 594652, 4095370; 594639, 4095380; 594627, 4095380; 
594622, 4095400; 594624, 4095470; 594606, 4095470; 594587, 4095460; 
594571, 4095470; 594565, 4095480; 594557, 4095480; 594549, 4095480; 
594530, 4095480; 594518, 4095470; 594514, 4095460; 594517, 4095440; 
594509, 4095430; 594498, 4095430; 594473, 4095430; 594462, 4095430; 
594453, 4095430; 594444, 4095420; 594442, 4095410; 594441, 4095390; 
594436, 4095380; 594427, 4095380; 594415, 4095380; 594411, 4095390; 
594394, 4095420; 594390, 4095440; 594390, 4095450; 594391, 4095470; 
594410, 4095490; 594457, 4095530; 594502, 4095550; 594542, 4095560; 
594597, 4095560; 594597, 4095600; 594615, 4095600.
    (ii) Map 7--Unit H follows:

[[Page 57552]]


[[Page 57553]]

    (15) Unit I: Watsonville, Santa Cruz County, California. (i) 
Watsonville north area. From USGS 1:24,000 quadrangle map Watsonville 
West. Lands bounded by the following UTM zone 10 NAD83 coordinates (E, 
N). 606195, 4088630; 606299, 4088730; 606331, 4088750; 606365, 4088760; 
606454, 4088750; 606492, 4088750; 606515, 4088750; 606535, 4088760; 
606555, 4088800; 606560, 4088840; 606580, 4088880; 606607, 4088890; 
606660, 4088900; 606927, 4088910; 606938, 4088530; 606960, 4088530; 
606955, 4088360; 606955, 4088220; 606829, 4088080; 606708, 4087920; 
606689, 4087970; 606652, 4088040; 606596, 4088110; 606522, 4088170; 
606490, 4088210; 606437, 4088250; 606362, 4088300; 606303, 4088340; 
606274, 4088370; 606263, 4088390; 606252, 4088430; 606234, 4088450; 
606219, 4088480; 606215, 4088520; 606199, 4088590; 606195, 4088630.
    (ii) Watsonville Airport area. From USGS 1:24,000 quadrangle map 
Watsonville West. Lands bounded by the following UTM zone 10 NAD83 
coordinates (E, N). 607237, 4088850; 607246, 4088840; 607340, 4088840; 
607846, 4088860; 607947, 4089000; 608079, 4089030; 608191, 4088860; 
608649, 4088610; 608746, 4088570; 608600, 4088440; 607922, 4088530; 
607689, 4088150; 607274, 4087440; 607370, 4087430; 607366, 4087340; 
607157, 4087140; 607286, 4087040; 607333, 4087090; 607348, 4087150; 
607389, 4087150; 607449, 4087090; 607498, 4087060; 607570, 4087060; 
607570, 4086940; 607497, 4086880; 607591, 4086820; 607719, 4086630; 
607894, 4086560; 608001, 4086380; 608080, 4086230; 608166, 4086140; 
608011, 4086070; 608201, 4085740; 608315, 4085520; 608433, 4085280; 
608416, 4085220; 608118, 4084660; 607969, 4084590; 607817, 4084540; 
607586, 4084420; 606983, 4083880; 606447, 4084260; 606387, 4084810; 
606386, 4084830; 606378, 4084910; 606374, 4084960; 606373, 4084980; 
606405, 4085060; 606575, 4085650; 606583, 4085690; 606581, 4085740; 
606581, 4085830; 606501, 4086490; 606495, 4086510; 606497, 4086540; 
606543, 4086810; 606617, 4087320; 606659, 4087300; 606857, 4087310; 
606927, 4087400; 606938, 4087430; 607005, 4087620; 607031, 4087670; 
607046, 4087710; 607073, 4087750; 607092, 4087830; 607111, 4087990; 
607128, 4088030; 607140, 4088050; 607166, 4088080; 607200, 4088090; 
607292, 4088090; 607378, 4088100; 607383, 4088250; 607306, 4088240; 
607112, 4088230; 607127, 4088360; 607156, 4088600; 607237, 4088850.
    (iii) Watsonville south area. From USGS 1:24,000 quadrangle map 
Watsonville West. Lands bounded by the following UTM zone 10 NAD83 
coordinates (E, N). 609195, 4085690; 609153, 4085610; 609208, 4085430; 
609333, 4085390; 609504, 4085250; 609242, 4085080; 609191, 4085230; 
609144, 4085260; 609006, 4085250; 609123, 4085020; 608761, 4084800; 
608590, 4085160; 608651, 4085380; 608760, 4085450; 608869, 4085480; 
608941, 4085530; 608893, 4085610; 608849, 4085700; 608941, 4085900; 
609124, 4085870; 609201, 4085790; 609195, 4085690.
    (iv) Map 8--Unit I follows:

[[Page 57554]]


[[Page 57555]]

    (16) Unit J: Casserly, Santa Cruz County, California. (i) From USGS 
1:24,000 quadrangle maps Loma Prieta, Mt. Madona, Watsonville East, and 
Watsonville West. Lands bounded by the following UTM zone 10 NAD83 
coordinates (E, N). 610201, 4094760; 610253, 4094770; 610315, 4094760; 
610340, 4094730; 610351, 4094720; 610366, 4094730; 610368, 4094750; 
610363, 4094780; 610346, 4094860; 610330, 4094910; 610300, 4094980; 
610231, 4095070; 610143, 4095150; 610117, 4095190; 610107, 4095220; 
610111, 4095230; 610169, 4095280; 610196, 4095290; 610217, 4095330; 
610236, 4095340; 610262, 4095340; 610289, 4095330; 610366, 4095260; 
610399, 4095240; 610412, 4095240; 610428, 4095240; 610453, 4095240; 
610471, 4095210; 610499, 4095190; 610524, 4095200; 610548, 4095210; 
610563, 4095200; 610577, 4095170; 610599, 4095160; 610619, 4095170; 
610630, 4095180; 610659, 4095190; 610678, 4095200; 610695, 4095220; 
610702, 4095240; 610711, 4095250; 610730, 4095240; 610750, 4095240; 
610789, 4095230; 610783, 4095210; 610777, 4095180; 610768, 4095150; 
610761, 4095120; 610763, 4095090; 610779, 4095070; 610809, 4095070; 
610832, 4095070; 610851, 4095080; 610872, 4095070; 610880, 4095050; 
610878, 4095010; 610879, 4094990; 610881, 4094980; 610911, 4094930; 
610924, 4094910; 610946, 4094890; 610964, 4094890; 610982, 4094890; 
611082, 4094950; 611126, 4094960; 611161, 4094970; 611190, 4094970; 
611213, 4094950; 611216, 4094930; 611211, 4094870; 611210, 4094830; 
611226, 4094710; 611217, 4094510; 611258, 4094460; 611358, 4094440; 
611566, 4094440; 611639, 4094440; 611754, 4094460; 611806, 4094450; 
611867, 4094430; 612002, 4094360; 612045, 4094320; 612071, 4094280; 
612100, 4094230; 612136, 4094160; 612158, 4094130; 612214, 4094100; 
612248, 4094090; 612354, 4094010; 612393, 4094000; 612433, 4093990; 
612493, 4094000; 612575, 4094010; 612678, 4094000; 612764, 4093980; 
612836, 4093950; 612974, 4093850; 613106, 4093720; 613136, 4093690; 
613169, 4093670; 613269, 4093640; 613373, 4093620; 613483, 4093620; 
613505, 4093590; 613499, 4093570; 613482, 4093550; 613451, 4093520; 
613409, 4093480; 613386, 4093440; 613380, 4093410; 613391, 4093380; 
613409, 4093380; 613441, 4093380; 613522, 4093420; 613553, 4093430; 
613596, 4093430; 613625, 4093410; 613641, 4093360; 613631, 4093320; 
613615, 4093290; 613563, 4093250; 613496, 4093210; 613479, 4093190; 
613480, 4093170; 613542, 4093120; 613617, 4093090; 613699, 4093090; 
613732, 4093080; 613772, 4093050; 613790, 4093020; 613855, 4092900; 
613866, 4092870; 613909, 4092860; 613918, 4092810; 613905, 4092770; 
613871, 4092710; 613783, 4092690; 613730, 4092670; 613661, 4092630; 
613624, 4092650; 613555, 4092700; 613496, 4092640; 613468, 4092650; 
613409, 4092710; 613316, 4092620; 613285, 4092580; 613240, 4092560; 
613167, 4092570; 613101, 4092530; 613023, 4092520; 612958, 4092450; 
612847, 4092450; 612846, 4092620; 612576, 4092620; 612538, 4092680; 
612564, 4092770; 612630, 4092830; 612631, 4092890; 612676, 4092950; 
612688, 4093020; 612680, 4093040; 612651, 4093040; 612603, 4093000; 
612561, 4092980; 612529, 4092970; 612490, 4092980; 612464, 4093000; 
612439, 4093000; 612409, 4092950; 612333, 4092870; 612269, 4092760; 
612242, 4092710; 612214, 4092690; 612167, 4092710; 612109, 4092760; 
612022, 4092810; 612003, 4092850; 612002, 4092880; 612023, 4092900; 
612065, 4092900; 612111, 4092920; 612145, 4092970; 612159, 4092990; 
612183, 4092990; 612212, 4092980; 612227, 4092960; 612259, 4092950; 
612312, 4092970; 612336, 4093010; 612323, 4093080; 612339, 4093130; 
612369, 4093180; 612390, 4093200; 612383, 4093220; 612353, 4093240; 
612307, 4093250; 612235, 4093250; 612181, 4093280; 612123, 4093320; 
612011, 4093360; 612028, 4093410; 612061, 4093490; 612043, 4093600; 
612069, 4093670; 611870, 4093750; 611832, 4093680; 611760, 4093640; 
611676, 4093620; 611667, 4093570; 611636, 4093530; 611587, 4093520; 
611584, 4093430; 611398, 4093410; 611395, 4093160; 611331, 4093110; 
611251, 4093060; 610986, 4093130; 610818, 4093180; 610752, 4093240; 
610709, 4093270; 610662, 4093270; 610498, 4093240; 610429, 4093250; 
610382, 4093310; 610351, 4093370; 610333, 4093410; 610109, 4093470; 
610090, 4093520; 610066, 4093570; 610046, 4093640; 610050, 4093710; 
610070, 4093790; 610114, 4093830; 610182, 4093840; 610443, 4093800; 
610465, 4093800; 610477, 4093820; 610483, 4093860; 610489, 4093950; 
610489, 4093980; 610467, 4094020; 610456, 4094100; 610442, 4094120; 
610426, 4094130; 610385, 4094150; 610296, 4094180; 610278, 4094190; 
610255, 4094210; 610220, 4094250; 610188, 4094290; 610152, 4094330; 
610121, 4094380; 610115, 4094410; 610110, 4094460; 610121, 4094590; 
610133, 4094680; 610140, 4094710; 610154, 4094730; 610175, 4094750; 
610201, 4094760.
    (ii) Map 9--Unit J follows:

[[Page 57556]]


[[Page 57557]]

    (17) Unit K: Elkhorn, Monterey County, California. (i) From USGS 
1:24,000 quadrangle maps Watsonville East and Prunedale. Lands bounded 
by the following UTM zone 10 NAD83 coordinates (E, N). 611931, 4081300; 
611930, 4081420; 611939, 4081530; 611956, 4081610; 611983, 4081680; 
611981, 4081740; 611956, 4081790; 611918, 4081860; 611877, 4081940; 
611839, 4082020; 611806, 4082090; 611787, 4082150; 611788, 4082180; 
611796, 4082190; 611834, 4082200; 611862, 4082190; 611875, 4082170; 
611885, 4082140; 611902, 4082110; 611916, 4082100; 611967, 4082090; 
612005, 4082090; 612065, 4082080; 612155, 4082060; 612210, 4082080; 
612247, 4082100; 612283, 4082110; 612348, 4082090; 612423, 4082080; 
612481, 4082050; 612501, 4082000; 612519, 4081910; 612517, 4081840; 
612517, 4081750; 612499, 4081720; 612478, 4081690; 612469, 4081640; 
612473, 4081600; 612504, 4081490; 612509, 4081400; 612518, 4081210; 
612520, 4081080; 612504, 4081040; 612475, 4081010; 612428, 4080960; 
612393, 4080940; 612333, 4080880; 612255, 4080790; 612142, 4080860; 
612070, 4080930; 6 12001, 4081020; 611957, 4081120; 611940, 4081200; 
611931, 4081300.
    (ii) Map 10--Unit K follows:

[[Page 57558]]

* * * * *

    Dated: November 2, 2001.
Joseph E. Doddridge,
 Acting Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks.
[FR Doc. 01-28040 Filed 11-14-01; 8:45 am]