[Federal Register: February 1, 2001 (Volume 66, Number 22)]
[Rules and Regulations]               
[Page 8649-8677]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

[[Page 8649]]


Part IV

Department of the Interior


Fish and Wildlife Service


50 CFR Part 17

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Final Determination of 
Critical Habitat for Peninsular Bighorn Sheep; Final Rule

[[Page 8650]]



Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 17

RIN 1018-AG17

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Final 
Determination of Critical Habitat for Peninsular Bighorn Sheep

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Final rule.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), designate 
critical habitat for Peninsular bighorn sheep pursuant to the 
Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). A total of 
approximately 341,919 hectares (844,897 acres) in Riverside, San Diego, 
and Imperial counties, California, are designated as critical habitat 
for Peninsular bighorn sheep.
    Critical habitat identifies specific areas that have the physical 
and biological features that are essential to the conservation of a 
listed species, and that may require special management considerations 
or protection. The primary constituent elements for the Peninsular 
bighorn sheep are those habitat components that are essential for the 
primary biological needs of feeding, sheltering, reproduction, 
dispersal, and genetic exchange. All areas designated as critical 
habitat for the Peninsular bighorn sheep contain one or more of the 
primary constituent elements.
    Section 7 of the Act prohibits destruction or adverse modification 
of critical habitat by any activity funded, authorized, or carried out 
by any Federal agency. Section 4 of the Act requires us to consider 
economic and other impacts of specifying any particular area as 
critical habitat. We solicited data and comments from the public on all 
aspects of the proposed rule and economic analysis.

DATES: This rule will be effective March 5, 2001.

ADDRESSES: Comments and materials received, as well as supporting 
documentation used in the preparation of this final rule, will be 
available for public inspection, by appointment, during normal business 
hours at the Carlsbad Fish and Wildlife Office, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, 2730 Loker Avenue West, Carlsbad, California 92008.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Field Supervisor, Carlsbad Fish and 
Wildlife Office, at the above address (telephone: 760/431-9440; 
facsimile 760/431-9624).

    The bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis) is a large mammal (family 
Bovidae) originally described by Shaw in 1804 (Wilson and Reeder 1993). 
Wild sheep became established in North America after crossing the 
Bering land bridge from Eurasia during the late Pleistocene (Geist 
1971), and their range has since spread to include desert habitats as 
far south as northern Mexico (Manville 1980). In North America, two 
species of wild sheep currently are recognized: the thinhorn sheep 
(Ovis dalli) and the bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis).
    Bighorn sheep were once divided into seven recognized subspecies 
based on differences in skull measurements (Cowan 1940; Buechner 1960; 
Shackleton 1985). These subspecies included Audubon bighorn sheep (Ovis 
canadensis auduboni), Peninsular bighorn sheep (O. c. cremnobates), 
Nelson bighorn sheep (O. c. nelsoni), Mexican bighorn sheep (O. c. 
mexicana), Weems bighorn sheep (O. c. weemsi), California bighorn sheep 
(O. c. californiana), and Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep (O. c. 
canadensis). Audubon bighorn sheep are now extinct. As described below, 
bighorn sheep taxonomy has since been revised.
    The term ``desert bighorn'' is used to describe bighorn sheep that 
inhabit dry and relatively barren desert environments and typically 
includes bighorn sheep subspecies that have, to date, been classified 
as Ovis canadensis nelsoni, O. c. mexicana, O. c. cremnobates, and O. 
c. weemsi (Manville 1980). The validity of these subspecies 
delineations has been questioned and reassessed. Based on morphometric 
and genetic analyses, Wehausen and Ramey (1993) synonymized Peninsular 
bighorn with the subspecies nelsoni, which is the current taxonomy.
    In the Peninsular Mountain Ranges, bighorn sheep are found from the 
San Jacinto Mountains of southern California south into the Volcan Tres 
Virgenes Mountains near Santa Rosalia, Baja California, Mexico, a total 
distance of approximately 800 kilometers (km) (500 miles (mi)). The 
area occupied by the distinct vertebrate population segment covered 
herein coincides with the range of the former subspecies Ovis 
canadensis cremnobates in California. The California Fish and Game 
Commission listed O. c. cremnobates as ``rare'' in 1971. The 
designation was changed to ``threatened'' by the California Department 
of Fish and Game (CDFG) to conform with terminology of the amended 
California Endangered Species Act.
    The Peninsular bighorn sheep is similar in appearance to other 
desert bighorn sheep. The coat is pale brown, and the permanent horns, 
which become rough and scarred with age, vary in color from yellowish-
brown to dark brown. The horns are massive and coiled in males; in 
females, they are smaller and not coiled. In comparison to other desert 
bighorn sheep, the Peninsular bighorn sheep is generally described as 
having paler coloration and having horns with very heavy bases (Cowan 
    Peninsular bighorn sheep occur on steep, open slopes, canyons, and 
washes in hot and dry desert regions where the land is rough, rocky, 
and sparsely vegetated. Most of these sheep live between 91 and 1,219 
meters (m) (300 and 4,000 feet (ft)) in elevation, where average annual 
precipitation is less than 10 centimeters (cm) (4 inches (in)) and 
daily high temperatures average 104 deg. Fahrenheit in the summer. 
Caves and other forms of shelter (e.g., rock outcrops) are used during 
inclement weather and for shade during the hotter months. Lambing areas 
are associated with ridge benches or canyon rims adjacent to steep 
slopes or escarpments. Alluvial fans (sloping deposits of gravel, sand, 
clay, and other sediments that spread fan-like at the base of canyons 
and washes) are also used for breeding, feeding, and movement.
    Peninsular bighorn sheep use a wide variety of plant species as 
their food source (Turner 1976; Scott 1986). Cunningham (1982) 
determined that the bighorn sheep diet in Carrizo Canyon (at the south 
end of the U.S. Peninsular Ranges) consisted of 57 percent shrubs, 32 
percent herbaceous annuals and perennials, 8 percent cacti, and 2 
percent grasses. Scott (1986) and Turner (1976) reported similar diet 
compositions at the north end of the range. Diet composition varied 
among seasons (Cunningham 1982; Scott 1986), presumably because of 
variability in forage availability, selection of specific plant species 
during different times of the year (Scott 1986), and seasonal movements 
of bighorn sheep. As discussed in the approved Recovery Plan (Service 
2000), the high metabolic demands of ewes during pregnancy and 
lactation require the seasonal availability of high protein forage 
sources such as found on the deeper, more productive soils of alluvial 
fans and canyon bottoms.
    Peninsular bighorn sheep typically produce only one lamb per year. 
In the Peninsular Ranges, ewes estimated to be

[[Page 8651]]

between 2 and 16 years of age have been documented to produce lambs 
(Ostermann et al. in press; Rubin et al. 2000). Lambs are born after a 
gestation of approximately 174 days (Shackleton et al. 1984). Lambing 
occurs from January through August (Service 1999); however, most 
lambsare born between February and April (Rubin et al. 2000). Ewes and 
lambs frequently occupy steep terrain that provides escape cover and 
shelter from excessive heat; they tend to congregate near dependable 
water sources during the summer. Lambs are able to eat native forage 
within 2 weeks of their birth and are weaned between 4 and 6 months of 
    Bighorn ewes exhibit a high degree of site fidelity to their home 
range, and this behavior is learned by their offspring (Geist 1971). 
Ewes that share portions of a range, referred to as ``ewe groups'' in 
this rule, are likely to be more closely related to each other than 
they are to other ewes (Festa-Bianchet 1991; Boyce et al. 1999). 
However, bighorn ewes occasionally move well beyond their traditional 
home ranges (Rubin et al. 1998), and may even between mountain ranges 
(Bleich et al. 1990, 1996). By following older animals, young bighorn 
sheep gather knowledge regarding escape terrain, migration routes, 
water sources, and lambing habitat (Geist 1971). Rams do not show the 
same level of site fidelity and tend to range more widely, often moving 
among ewe groups and mountain ranges. As young rams reach 2 to 4 years 
of age, they follow older rams away from their birth group during the 
fall breeding period, or rut, and may rejoin ewe groups following the 
fall breeding (Geist 1971; Festa-Bianchet 1991).
    From May through October, permanent water sources greatly enhance 
the ability of Peninsular bighorn sheep to survive high temperatures, 
and their distribution is typically more localized. Bighorn sheep 
populations aggregate during this period due to a combination of 
breeding activities and diminishing water sources. Summer concentration 
areas are associated primarily with dependable water sources, and 
ideally provide a diversity of vegetation to meet the forage 
requirements of bighorn sheep. Once rains arrive in the fall, desert 
bighorn sheep typically expand or shift their home ranges to include 
areas farther from water sources (McQuivey 1978; Leslie and Douglas 
1979; Krausman et al. 1989). These home range expansions may allow the 
heavily used forage around permanent water sources a chance to recover.
    Bighorn sheep are primarily diurnal (Krausman et al. 1985) but may 
be active at any time of day or night (Miller et al. 1984). Their daily 
activity pattern includes feeding and resting periods. As bighorn sheep 
rely on vigilance to detect predators, they benefit from gregariousness 
and group alertness (Geist 1971; Berger 1978). Within each ewe group, 
ewes appear to associate with other ewes based on their availability 
rather than on their matrilineal (descent through the mother) 
relationships (Festa-Bianchet 1991; Boyce et al. 1999). These subgroups 
are dynamic, that is, they may split, reform, or change membership on a 
daily or hourly basis as animals move through their home ranges.
    The decline of the Peninsular bighorn sheep is attributed to a 
combination of factors, including: (1) the effects of disease and 
parasitism (Buechner 1960; DeForge and Scott 1982; DeForge et al. 1982; 
Jessup 1985; Wehausen et al. 1987; Elliott et al. 1994); (2) low lamb 
recruitment (DeForge et al. 1982; Wehausen et al. 1987; DeForge et al. 
1995); (3) habitat loss, degradation, and fragmentation (Service 2000; 
Rubin et al. 1998); and (4) predation (DeForge et al. 1997; Hayes et 
al. 2000).
    Disease has been identified as one of the factors responsible for 
population declines in the Peninsular Ranges and elsewhere. Analysis of 
exposure to disease-causing agents between 1978 and 1990 showed that 
Peninsular bighorn sheep populations and surrounding populations in 
southern California have higher levels of pathogen exposure than other 
populations of bighorn sheep in the State (Elliott et al. 1994). 
However, tests of exposure to pathogens have revealed the presence of 
antibodies to several infectious disease agents in healthy as well as 
in clinically ill animals (Clark et al. 1993; Elliott et al. 1994; 
DeForge et al. 1997), and essentially all of the viruses, bacteria, and 
parasites that have been reported extant in Peninsular bighorn sheep 
appear to be widespread among desert bighorn sheep in the western 
United States (Jessup et al. 1990). All evidence indicates that the 
influence of disease in the Peninsular Ranges has subsided in more 
recent years. For example, examinations of bighorn sheep throughout the 
range indicate that most animals are clinically normal (DeForge et al. 
1997; Borjesson et al. 2000). The reduced influence of disease on 
Peninsular bighorn sheep (at the same time they are in decline) 
suggests that other factors, such as predation, habitat loss and 
modification, and human-related disturbance, currently limit the 
    In the Peninsular Ranges, a growing human population and increased 
activity adjacent to and within bighorn sheep habitat are adversely 
affecting bighorn sheep by altering their normal behavior, which has 
evolved in the absence of excessive human disturbance. Human 
development impacts sheep through habitat loss, fragmentation, or other 
modifications. At least 7,490 hectares (ha) (18,500 acres (ac) or about 
30 square miles) of suitable habitat has been lost to urbanization and 
agriculture along the urban interface between Palm Springs and La 
Quinta (Service 2000). Much of the lost habitat consisted of low 
elevation alluvial fans and washes that furnished important sources of 
nutrients to ewes while they were rearing their lambs. Moreover, in the 
northern Santa Rosa Mountains, from 1991 to 1996, thirty-four percent 
of adult mortalities appear to have been directly caused by 
urbanization. Five bighorn sheep were killed by cars; 5 bighorns died 
from feeding on toxic, non-native ornamental plants; and 1 was 
strangled in a wire fence (DeForge and Ostermann 1997).
    Impacts also extend into bighorn sheep habitat beyond the urban 
edge. These may include increased noise and lighting, an increased 
number of humans and their pets venturing into sheep habitat, and 
potentially an increase in some predators, such as coyotes, along the 
wildland/urban interface. Numerous researchers have expressed concern 
over the impact human activity has on bighorn sheep (e.g., Light and 
Weaver 1973; Jorgensen and Turner 1973; Hicks 1978; Olech 1979; Graham 
1980; Cunningham 1982; DeForge and Scott 1982; Gross 1987; Smith and 
Krausman 1988; Sanchez et al. 1988; Krausman et al. in prep.). Although 
cases have been cited in which bighorn sheep populations did not appear 
to be negatively impacted by human activity (e.g., Hicks and Elder 
1979; Hamilton et al. 1982), numerous researchers, including the 
previous authors, have documented altered bighorn sheep behavior in 
response to human-related disturbance. Bighorn sheep avoided using 
areas while humans were present. In addition to development, a variety 
of other human activities, such as hiking, mountain biking, horseback 
riding, camping, hunting, livestock grazing, and use of aircraft and 
off-road vehicles, have the potential to disrupt normal bighorn sheep 
social behaviors. Bighorn sheep may also alter their use of essential 
resources resulting in negative physiological effects or they may 
abandon traditional habitat as a result of human disturbance (McQuivey 
1978; MacArthur et al. 1979; Olech 1979;

[[Page 8652]]

Leslie and Douglas 1980; Graham 1980; MacArthur et al. 1982; Bates and 
Workman 1983; Miller and Smith 1985; Krausman and Leopold 1986; 
Krausman et al. 1989; Papouchis et al. 1999). Desert bighorn sheep 
populations next to rapidly growing urban areas in Arizona and New 
Mexico gradually declined to extinction, or nearly so (Krausman et al. 
in prep.). Disease and predation did not appear to be responsible for 
the extinctions. However, greatly increased numbers of humans entering 
bighorn sheep habitat, a loss of low elevation habitat to urbanization, 
and loss of additional habitat due to fire suppression coincided with 
the declines (Krausman et al. in prep.). Fire suppression caused 
habitat loss because bighorn sheep quit using areas when vegetation 
became too dense. In the northern part of their range, specifically the 
Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains, Peninsular bighorn sheep 
currently face a situation similar to those described above. Housing 
developments, golf courses, and urban areas have been built within or 
immediately adjacent to bighorn sheep habitat, and recreational use of 
bighorn sheep habitat is increasing.
    Mountain lion predation was an apparent limiting factor to some ewe 
groups in the Peninsular Ranges (Hayes et al. 2000). Previously, 
incidents of lion predation were not common, and predation was not 
considered to regulate or limit Peninsular bighorn sheep populations 
(Weaver and Mensch 1970; Jorgensen and Turner 1975; Cunningham 1982). 
However, the increase in the number of radio-collared bighorn sheep 
since 1993 may have increased the detection of such mortalities. 
Bighorn sheep have lived with predators for thousands of years; and 
larger, healthier bighorn sheep populations would have normally 
absorbed predation losses. However, a combination of other mortality 
factors, such as disease, urbanization, and habitat loss, may have 
decreased the population to such low levels that predation became an 
important mortality factor, possibly preventing the population from 
recovering (Caughley and Sinclair 1994). Predation by other species, 
such as coyotes and bobcats, could reduce lamb recruitment; however, 
the impact of these predators is not well understood.
    The Peninsular bighorn sheep in the United States declined from an 
estimated 1,171 individuals in 1971 to about 570 individuals in 1991 
(Bleich et al. 1992). A rangewide census in October, 2000 estimated a 
population of approximately 400 in about eight ewe groups in the wild 
in the United States (Steve Torres, CDFG, pers. comm. 2000).
    There are also two captive populations of Peninsular bighorn sheep. 
The Living Desert Museum, an educational and zoo facility in Palm 
Desert, California, maintains a small group (seven adult females and 
two adult males) that is not used to augment wild populations. The 
Bighorn Institute, also in Palm Desert, maintains a small captive herd 
of approximately 15 to 20 animals. This private, nonprofit 
organization, established in 1982 through a Memorandum of Understanding 
with the CDFG, conducts research and maintains a breeding herd at its 
facility. Since 1985, seventy-nine animals from this herd have been 
released into the wild. Releases have occurred in the northern Santa 
Rosa Mountains (76 releases from 1985 to 2000) and in the San Jacinto 
Mountains (3 during 1997; Ostermann et al., in press).
    Essential habitat for the Peninsular bighorn sheep in the United 
States is managed by the California Department of Parks and Recreation 
(167,839 ha (414,739 ac) or 49 percent); CDFG (10,009 ha (24,732 ac) or 
3 percent), Bureau of Land Management (BLM) (91,470 ha (226,026 ac) or 
27 percent), private landowners (53,285 ha (131,670 ac) or 16 percent), 
Trust (Tribal and allotted lands) (7,359 ha (18,184 ac) or 2 percent), 
U.S. Forest Service (Forest Service) (7,277 ha (17,982 ac) or 2 
percent), and other State and local entities (4,680 ha (11,564 ac) or 1 
    The Santa Rosa Mountains National Monument (Monument) was 
designated in October 2000. The Monument includes approximately 110,075 
ha (272,000 ac) in the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains. Private 
land within the Monument may be purchased from willing sellers, and 
Federal public lands will be jointly managed by the BLM and Forest 
Service. Approximately 76,657 ha (189,423 ac) of Peninsular bighorn 
sheep critical habitat are within the Monument boundary.

Previous Federal Action

    Bighorn sheep occupying the Peninsular Ranges of southern 
California were listed as endangered on March 18, 1998; a complete 
discussion of the history of Federal actions prior to listing can be 
found in the final rule (63 FR 13134). At the time of the listing, we 
concluded that designation of critical habitat was not prudent. 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 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. We 
concluded that critical habitat designation for the Peninsular bighorn 
sheep was not prudent because both of the described situations existed. 
We were concerned that publishing detailed maps of bighorn habitat 
would encourage human disturbance in sensitive areas, such as lambing 
habitat, rutting areas, and water sources, and result in increased 
disruption of bighorn sheep. We cited the rapidly growing human 
population in the Coachella Valley and the increasing recreational 
interest within bighorn habitat. We also concluded that designation of 
critical habitat did not add an additional regulatory benefit to 
bighorn sheep due to the limited Federal regulatory jurisdiction, 
through section 7 of the Act, for the majority of habitat necessary for 
conservation of the species. Therefore, we concluded that designation 
of critical habitat could increase the degree of threats to the species 
and would not provide any additional protection beyond existing 
regulatory mechanisms.
    On December 18, 1998, the Southwest Center for Biological Diversity 
(Center) and Desert Survivors filed a complaint against the Service 
alleging that our ``not prudent'' finding was unsubstantiated. On 
September 17, 1999, we entered into a Settlement Agreement with the 
Center and Desert Survivors that stipulated a schedule for reviewing 
our prudency determination and publishing a Recovery Plan for 
Peninsular bighorn sheep. The schedule included the following dates--
draft Recovery Plan, December 31, 1999; new proposed critical habitat 
determination, June 30, 2000; final Recovery Plan, October 31, 2000; 
and final determination of critical habitat as not prudent, September 
30, 2000, or final critical habitat, by December 31, 2000. The latter 
deadline was extended to January 15, 2001 by agreement with the 
plaintiffs. On December 31, 1999, we published the draft Recovery Plan 
for the Bighorn Sheep in the Peninsular Ranges (Service 1999). On July 
5, 2000, we published a proposed critical habitat determination (65 FR 
41405), and on October 31, 2000, the approved Recovery Plan for Bighorn 
Sheep in the Peninsular Ranges, California, was published.
    As required by the Settlement Agreement, we reconsidered our 
previous prudency determination regarding the threats posed by a 
potential increase in disturbance at especially sensitive bighorn use 

[[Page 8653]]

such as lambing areas, resulting from critical habitat designation. As 
discussed in the proposal to designate critical habitat for the 
Peninsular bighorn sheep (65 FR 41405), we have now determined that 
such threats are not sufficient to preclude the designation of critical 
habitat for the following reasons: (1) Peninsular bighorn sheep 
distribution and persistence is not solely dependent on isolated 
habitat features, but requires many essential resources spread across 
the greater landscape that allows the species to adapt to natural and 
unnatural environmental processes (McCutchen 1981; Krausman et al. 
1989; Miller and Gaud 1989); (2) though bighorn sheep ewes typically 
exhibit a high degree of site fidelity to their immediate home range, 
rams travel widely across desert valleys and mountain ranges (Bleich et 
al. 1990, 1996) and their long-term distributions change in response to 
a dynamic environment (McQuivey 1978; Leslie and Douglas 1979; Krausman 
et al. 1989); and, (3) bighorn sheep in the Peninsular Ranges consist 
of a series of interconnected subpopulations (termed a metapopulation 
by Levins (1970)) that exchange individuals and/or genetic material 
(Rubin et al. 1998; Bleich et al. 1990, 1996). The interchange of 
individuals within this metapopulation can prevent otherwise isolated 
sub-populations from going extinct and enhance the genetic fitness and 
demographic augmentation of subpopulations. As in any metapopulation, 
habitat destruction and fragmentation can impede movement, thereby 
degrading the ability of the subpopulations to interact and persist 
(Ough and DeVos 1984; Bleich et al. 1990, 1996; Boyce et al. 1997; 
Rubin et al. 1998; Boyce et al. 1999). This is particularly true for 
large mammals that range widely to locate and exploit unpredictably 
changing sources of food, water, and shelter (Krausman et al. 1989; 
Miller and Gaud 1989; Longshore and Douglas 1995). Accordingly, we have 
used an ecosystem approach (Armentrout and Boyd 1995; Douglas and 
Leslie 1999) to delineate critical habitat that includes all of the 
essential habitat components needed for recovery of bighorn sheep 
metapopulation in the Peninsular Ranges.
    Furthermore, we determined that the limited section 7 nexus for the 
majority of Peninsular bighorn habitat, as discussed in the final 
listing rule, was not, by itself, an adequate basis for making a ``not 
prudent'' finding. Designation of critical habitat will also provide 
some educational benefit by identifying the range-wide habitat 
essential to the conservation of bighorn sheep in the Peninsular 
Ranges, and help provide a focus for interagency recovery efforts. 
Therefore, we now conclude that the benefits of designating critical 
habitat outweigh the potential negative impacts.
    On July 5, 2000, we published a proposed determination for the 
designation of critical habitat for Peninsular bighorn sheep (65 FR 
41405). A total of approximately 354,343 ha (875,613 ac) was proposed 
as critical habitat for bighorn sheep in Riverside, San Diego, and 
Imperial counties, California. The comment period was open until August 
31, 2000. During this comment period, a public hearing was held on July 
20, 2000, in Palm Springs, Riverside County. On October 19, 2000, we 
published a notice (65 FR 62691) announcing the reopening of the 
comment period on the proposal to designate critical habitat for 
bighorn sheep and a notice of availability of the draft economic 
analysis on the proposed determination. The comment period was open 
until November 20, 2000.

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.
    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 consultation on 
Federal actions that are likely to result in the destruction or adverse 
modification of critical habitat. In our regulations at 50 CFR 402.02, 
we define destruction or adverse modification as ``* * * the 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 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.
    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 
    Section 4 requires that we designate critical habitat at the time 
of listing and based on what we know at the time of the designation. 
When we designate critical habitat at the time of listing or under 
short court-ordered deadlines, we will often not have sufficient 
information to identify all areas of critical habitat. We are required, 
nevertheless, to make a decision and thus, must base our designations 
on what, at the time of designation, we know to be critical habitat.
    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), that provide essential life cycle needs of the 
    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

[[Page 8654]]

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 
    Our Policy on Information Standards Under the Endangered Species 
Act, published in the Federal Register on July 1, 1994 (Vol. 59, p. 
34271), provides criteria, establishes procedures, and provides 
guidance to ensure that decisions made by the Service represent the 
best scientific and commercial data available. It requires Service 
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, 
biological assessments, unpublished materials, and expert opinion or 
personal knowledge.
    Habitat is often dynamic, and species 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, all should understand that 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), and 
to the regulatory protections afforded by the section 7(a)(2) jeopardy 
standard and the section 9 take prohibition, 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.


    In identifying areas that are essential to conserve the Peninsular 
bighorn sheep, we used the best scientific and commercial data 
available. This included data from research and survey observations 
published in peer-reviewed articles; recovery criteria, habitat 
analyses, and other information in the approved Recovery Plan (Service 
2000); discussions with, and data made available through, the 
Peninsular Bighorn Sheep Recovery Team and the Coachella Valley 
Multiple Species Habitat Conservation Plan program; meetings with the 
County of Riverside, the cities of Palm Springs, Cathedral City, Rancho 
Mirage, Palm Desert, and La Quinta, and private landowners; and 
regional Geographic Information System (GIS) coverages. Further, 
information provided in comments on the proposed designation and draft 
economic analysis were evaluated and taken into consideration in the 
development of this final designation.

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 designate as critical 
habitat, we are required to consider those physical and biological 
features (primary constituent elements) that are essential to the 
conservation of the species. 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 and rearing of offspring; and habitats that are protected 
from disturbance or are representative of the historic geographical and 
ecological distribution of a species.
    The areas designated as critical habitat are designed to maintain 
the metapopulation of bighorn sheep in the Peninsular Ranges, and 
provide some or all of those habitat components essential for the 
biological needs of feeding, resting, reproduction and population 
recruitment, isolation from detrimental human disturbance, as well as 
dispersal and connectivity between ewe groups. The primary biological 
and physical constituent elements that are essential to the 
conservation of Peninsular bighorn sheep include space for the normal 
behavior of groups and individuals; protection from disturbance; 
availability of the various native desert plant communities found on 
different topographic slopes, aspects, and landforms, such as steep 
slopes, rolling foothills, alluvial fans, and canyon bottoms; a range 
of habitats that provide forage, especially during periods of drought; 
steep, remote habitat for lambing, rearing of young, and escape from 
disturbance and/or predation; water sources; suitable linkages allowing 
individual bighorn to move freely between ewe groups, and maintain 
connections between subpopulations within the Peninsular Range 
metapopulation; and other essential habitat components to accommodate 
population expansion to a recovery level. Given the importance and 
magnitude of the threats to the habitat of this species discussed 
above, we believe that these areas may require special management 
considerations or protection.

Criteria Used To Identify Critical Habitat

    The criteria for delineating Peninsular bighorn habitat were based 
on biological information in pertinent literature (e.g., the approved 
Recovery Plan) and the expert opinion of those most familiar with 
bighorn sheep in the Peninsular Ranges (i.e., the Recovery Team). The 
upper elevation boundary was largely determined by relatively dense 
chaparral and pine-juniper vegetation communities. Bighorn sheep 
require open terrain to detect and avoid predators, such as mountain 
lions, and they generally will not frequent dense vegetation.
    The lower elevation boundary was determined by the topography, 
existing urbanization, and bighorn sheep foraging behavior and movement 
patterns. Along the eastern boundary, habitat within 0.8 km (0.5 mi) of 
slopes greater than or equal to 20 percent were included in the 
delineated critical habitat. Researchers have documented bighorn sheep 
descending from steeper habitat and venturing out upon alluvial fans 
and washes to acquire the nutritious forage found on these more gentle 
slopes. Following the delineation of essential habitat, over 22,000 
past observations of bighorn sheep were plotted, and the distribution 
of these observations were compared to the essential habitat boundary 
to insure that only those areas needed for the recovery of bighorn 
sheep were included in essential habitat. The similarity of the 
Recovery Plan definition of essential habitat, and the statutory 
definition of critical habitat, indicated that the two habitat 
delineation processes should be coordinated to improve scientific rigor 
and minimize the potential for legal and biological conflicts.

[[Page 8655]]

    We used a quarter-section grid based on the Public Land Survey to 
delineate critical habitat in the proposed rule. A small area of San 
Diego County within the Valle de San Felipe Land Grant was defined 
using Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) coordinates. In response to 
public comments, we have redelineated critical habitat along the urban 
edge from Palm Springs to La Quinta using a finer scale of resolution, 
a 100-meter UTM grid.
    In defining critical habitat boundaries, we made an effort to avoid 
developed areas, such as towns and other similar lands, which do not 
provide primary constituent elements. Though the minimum mapping unit 
we used to designate critical habitat does not exclude all developed 
areas, such as scattered residential housing in sparsely inhabited 
regions, our 100-meter UTM grid minimum mapping unit was designed to 
minimize the amount of commercial development along the urban edge. 
Road and railroad rights-of-way, flood control facilities, or other 
facilities that must be traversed by bighorn sheep to maintain 
connectivity between subpopulations, or otherwise may provide food, 
water, or cover for Peninsular bighorn sheep, are considered to support 
primary constituent elements, and therefore are included as critical 
    We excluded habitat that is not considered essential to bighorn 
conservation from the critical habitat boundary. This includes areas 
such as those that were historically used for migration between other 
mountain ranges but have since been eliminated due to urban and 
agriculture development. While bighorn are regularly documented to use 
areas outside of critical habitat, these areas are considered to be 
non-essential, for a variety of reasons, including fragmentation and/or 
proximity to development, non-native vegetation, human-caused hazardous 
conditions, and not necessary for population movement and individual 
dispersal within the range of the metapopulation.
    Maintaining connectivity between ewe groups is a necessary 
component for continued viability of metapopulations (Bleich et al. 
1990, 1996) and to achieve population recovery of bighorn sheep in the 
Peninsular Ranges (Service 2000). Furthermore, because the environment 
is dynamic, resources, such as forage, are not distributed evenly 
across the landscape, and their spatial distribution, abundance and 
nutritional quality change over time. Consequently, bighorn sheep need 
to also adjust their distributions to meet their nutritional needs. 
Bighorn sheep may range widely within home ranges or may even shift 
home ranges to find areas with a suitable combination of food, water, 
and security (Leslie and Douglas 1979). These periodic shifts are 
important because they allow forage plants an opportunity to regrow and 
recover from herbivory by bighorn sheep. Given their wide-ranging 
capabilities, fluctuating habitat requirements, and dynamic habitat 
conditions, we are not aware of any information suggesting that 
particular areas within designated critical habitat are currently 
unsuitable or unused over the generational time-frame needed for the 
long-term conservation of bighorn sheep in the Peninsular Ranges.
    In summary, the critical habitat designated below constitutes our 
best assessment of areas needed for the species' survival and recovery.

Critical Habitat Designation

    The approximate area of designated critical habitat by county and 
land ownership is shown in Table 1.

                       Table 1.--Approximate Designated Critical Habitat Area (Hectares (Acres)) by County and Land Ownership \1\
                                                                                       Trust (Tribal
                               County                                  Federal \2\      and allotted     Local/State        Private           Total
Riverside..........................................................       36,625 ha         5,672 ha        16,685 ha        27,877 ha        86,859 ha
                                                                         (90,501 ac)      (14,016 ac)      (41,231 ac)      (68,886 ac)        (214,634)
San Diego..........................................................       20,112 ha             0 ha       152,841 ha        16,245 ha       189,198 ha
                                                                         (49,699 ac)           (0 ac)     (377,677 ac)      (40,143 ac)     (467,519 ac)
Imperial...........................................................       42,010 ha         1,687 ha        13,001 ha         9,163 ha        65,861 ha
                                                                        (103,808 ac)       (4,168 ac)      (32,126 ac)      (22,642 ha)     (162,744 ac)
    Total..........................................................       98,747 ha         7,359 ha       182,527 ha        53,285 ha       341,918 ha
                                                                        (244,008 ac)      (18,184 ac)     (451,034 ac)     (131,671 ac)     (844,897 ac) 
\1\ Approximate hectares have been converted to acres (1 ha = 2.47 ac). Based on the level of imprecision of mapping at this scale, approximate hectares
  have been rounded to the nearest hectare when applicable.
\2\ Federal lands include BLM and Forest Service lands.

    Designated critical habitat is located in Riverside, San Diego, and 
Imperial Counties, California, from the San Jacinto Mountains south to 
the U.S.-Mexican border, generally along the eastern escarpment of the 
Peninsular Ranges that steeply descends into the Sonoran Desert along 
the Coachella Valley, Anza-Borrego Desert, and Salton Trough. Critical 
habitat is designated typically within a narrow elevational band that 
ranges from the lower alluvial slopes and habitats along the base of 
the Peninsular Ranges upslope to approximately 5,000 feet in elevation, 
which typically corresponds to a vegetational transition from Sonoran 
Desert plant communities to more coastally influenced chaparral 
habitats. This area generally includes the desert slopes of the San 
Jacinto Mountains, Santa Rosa Mountains, San Ysidro Mountains, Pinyon 
Mountains, Vallecitos Mountains, Fish Creek Mountains, Tierra Blanca 
Mountains, Sawtooth Mountains, In-Ko-Pah Mountains, Coyote Mountains, 
and Jacumba Mountains. Lands proposed are under private, local/State, 
Trust (Tribal and allotted lands), and Federal ownership, with Federal 
lands including those lands managed by the BLM and Forest Service.

Effects of Critical Habitat Designation

Section 7  Consultation

    Section 7(a) of the Act requires Federal agencies, including the 
Service, to ensure that actions they fund, authorize, 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,

[[Page 8656]]

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 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) 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 the agency in eliminating conflicts that may 
be caused by the proposed action. The conservation recommendations in a 
conference report are advisory. We may issue a formal conference report 
if requested by a Federal agency. Formal conference reports on proposed 
critical habitat contain a biological 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 significant new information 
or changes in the action alter the content of the opinion (see 50 CFR 
    If a species is listed or critical habitat is designated, section 
7(a)(2) 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 
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 conferencing 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 
    Activities on Federal lands that may affect the Peninsular bighorn 
sheep or its critical habitat will require section 7 consultation. 
Activities on private or State lands requiring funding or a permit from 
a Federal agency, such the Federal Highway Administration, Federal 
Aviation Administration, or Federal Emergency Management Agency, will 
also be subject to the section 7 consultation process. Federal actions 
not affecting listed species or critical habitat and actions on non-
Federal lands that are not federally funded or permitted do not require 
section 7 consultation.
    Section 4(b)(8) of the Act requires us to evaluate briefly, 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 
alter the primary constituent elements to an extent that the value of 
critical habitat for both the survival and recovery of the bighorn is 
appreciably reduced. We note that such activities may also jeopardize 
the continued existence of the species. Activities that, when carried 
out, funded, or authorized by a Federal agency, may directly or 
indirectly adversely affect critical habitat include, but are not 
limited to:
    (1) Unauthorized destruction or degradation of habitat (as defined 
in the primary constituent elements discussion), including, but not 
limited to, clearing vegetation, bulldozing terrain, overgrazing, 
construction, road building, mining, and disturbing natural hydrology; 
    (2) Appreciably decreasing habitat value or quality through 
indirect effects (e.g., noise, edge effects, low-flying aircraft, 
invasion of exotic plants or animals, or fragmentation).
    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 area of the proposed action is 
occupied by the species. In those cases, the ramifications of 
designation of critical habitat are few or none. However, if occupied 
habitat becomes unoccupied in the future, there is a potential benefit 
to the species of designation of critical habitat in such areas.
    Federal agencies already consult with us on activities in areas 
currently inhabited by the species to ensure that their actions do not 
jeopardize the continued existence of the species. These actions 
include, but are not limited to:
    (1) Regulation of activities affecting waters of the United States 
by the Army Corps of Engineers under section 404 of the Clean Water 
    (2) Regulation of water flows, damming, diversion, and 
channelization by Federal agencies;
    (3) Regulation of grazing, mining, and recreation by the BLM and 
Forest Service;
    (4) Road construction and maintenance, right-of-way designation, 
and regulation of agricultural activities by Federal agencies;
    (5) Regulation of airspace and flight plans within the Federal 
Aviation Administration jurisdiction;

[[Page 8657]]

    (6) Military training, maneuvers, and flights;
    (7) Construction of roads and fences along the international border 
with Mexico, and associated immigration enforcement activities by the 
Immigration and Naturalization Service;
    (8) Hazard mitigation and post-disaster repairs funded by the 
Federal Emergency Management Agency;
    (9) Construction of communication sites licensed by the Federal 
Communications Commission; and
    (10) Activities funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 
U.S. Department of Energy, or any other Federal agency.
    Since Federal agencies already consult with us on projects that may 
affect listed species, we do not anticipate additional regulatory 
protection or project modifications will result from critical habitat 
    If you have questions regarding whether specific activities will 
constitute adverse modification of critical habitat, contact the Field 
Supervisor, Carlsbad Fish and Wildlife Offices (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, Branch of Endangered Species, 911 N.E. 11th 
Ave, Portland, Oregon 97232 (telephone 503/231-2063; facsimile 503/231-

Relationship to Habitat Conservation Plans

    Section 4(b)(2) of the Act allows us broad discretion to exclude 
from critical habitat designation areas where the benefits of exclusion 
outweigh the benefits of designation, provided the exclusion will not 
result in the extinction of the species. We expect that critical 
habitat may be used as a tool to identify those areas essential for the 
conservation of the species, and we will encourage development of 
Habitat Conservation Plans (HCPs) for such areas on non-Federal lands. 
Habitat conservation plans currently under development are intended to 
provide for protection and management of habitat areas essential for 
the conservation of the Peninsular bighorn sheep, while directing 
development and habitat modification to nonessential areas of lower 
habitat value.
    Several HCP efforts are currently under way that address listed and 
non-listed species in areas within the range of the Peninsular bighorn 
sheep and in areas we are designating as critical habitat. We are 
providing technical assistance and will continue to work closely with 
applicants throughout the development of future HCPs to identify lands 
essential for the long-term conservation of the Peninsular bighorn 
sheep and appropriate management for those lands. The take minimization 
and mitigation measures provided under these HCPs are expected to 
protect the essential habitat lands designated as critical habitat in 
this rule. The HCP development process provides an opportunity for more 
intensive data collection and analysis regarding the use of particular 
habitat areas by the Peninsular bighorn sheep. The process also enables 
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. If an HCP 
that addresses bighorn sheep as a covered species is ultimately 
approved, we will reassess the critical habitat boundaries in light of 
the HCP and applicable law, regulation, policy, and funding 
    The Coachella Valley Multiple Species Habitat Conservation Plan, 
currently under preparation, proposes coverage for Peninsular bighorn 
sheep. This effort represents an important opportunity to address the 
long-term conservation needs of Peninsular bighorn sheep throughout the 
private lands under city and county jurisdiction in Riverside County, 
and to integrate management with intermixed public lands. The Agua 
Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians also is preparing a multi-species HCP 
for their Reservation. Within Imperial and San Diego counties, Federal 
land ownership patterns, Federal funding and permitting, and extensive 
habitat protection on State lands, limit the prospects for HCPs that 
would include Peninsular bighorn sheep. We fully expect that HCPs 
undertaken by local jurisdictions (e.g., counties, cities) and other 
parties will identify, protect, and provide appropriate management for 
those specific lands within the boundaries of the plans that are 
essential for the long-term conservation of the species. We believe and 
fully expect that any HCPs approved in the future will show that 
covered activities carried out in accordance with the provisions of 
those HCPs would not result in destruction or adverse modification of 
critical habitat.

Summary of Comments and Recommendations

    In the July 5, 2000, proposed rule (65 FR 41405), we requested all 
interested parties to submit comments on the specifics of the proposal 
including information, policy, treatment of HCPs, and proposed critical 
habitat boundaries as provided in the proposed rule. The first comment 
period closed on August 31, 2000. The comment period was reopened from 
October 19, 2000, to November 20, 2000 (65 FR 62691), to allow for 
additional comments on the proposed rule and comments on the draft 
economic analysis of the proposed critical habitat.
    We contacted all appropriate State and Federal agencies, Tribes, 
county governments, elected officials, and other interested parties and 
invited them to comment. In addition, we invited public comment through 
the publication of notices in the following newspapers in southern 
California: The Desert Sun, The Riverside Press Enterprise, and the San 
Diego Union-Tribune. The inclusive dates of these publications were 
July 5, 2000, for The Riverside Press Enterprise and the San Diego 
Union-Tribune, and July 6, 2000, for The Desert Sun. In these notices 
and the proposed rule, we announced the date and times of two public 
hearings that were to be held on the proposed rule. These hearings were 
held in Palm Springs, California on July 20, 2000. Transcripts of these 
hearings are available for inspection (see ADDRESSES section). A public 
workshop with biological and economic experts was held on November 2, 
2000, in Palm Desert, to provide additional opportunity for discussion 
of issues and promote understanding of biology, economic, and 
procedural issues.
    We requested four scientists, who have familiarity with Peninsular 
bighorn sheep, to review the proposed critical habitat designation. 
None of the peer reviewers submitted comments on the proposed critical 
habitat designation.
    We received a total of 29 oral and 90 written comments during the 
two comment periods. Of these comments, 12 of the commenters who 
submitted oral testimony also submitted duplicative written comments. 
In total, oral and written comments were received from 3 Tribal 
governments, 1 Federal agency, 1 State agency, 1 State elected 
official, 3 local agencies, and 60 private organizations or 
individuals. We reviewed all comments received for substantive issues 
and new data regarding critical habitat and bighorn sheep. Comments of 
a similar nature are grouped under four general issues relating 
specifically to the proposed critical habitat determination and draft 
economic analysis on the proposed determination. These are addressed in 
the following summary.

[[Page 8658]]

Issue 1: Habitat Delineation

    Comment: Many commenters noted that delineating the proposed 
critical habitat boundary on a quarter-section grid created the 
impression that areas that were clearly developed were included in 
critical habitat and should be removed.
    Our Response: One of the challenges to legally describing bighorn 
sheep critical habitat in the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains is 
that development hugs the highly contorted toe of slope. Even though 
the proposed rule stated that existing development within the critical 
habitat boundary did not support constituent elements, using a quarter-
section grid was confusing to many due to its coarse resolution. In the 
proposed rule, a quarter-section grid was chosen as a practical means 
of defining critical habitat over a large area, without an unduly 
complex legal description. In the final designation, we have decided to 
reduce public confusion and increase biological precision by refining 
the delineation and using a 100-meter grid in Riverside County that 
minimizes the inclusion of existing development.
    Comment: Several commenters cited 16 U.S.C. 1532(5)(C), stating 
that critical habitat could not include the entire geographic range of 
bighorn sheep; others stated that critical habitat should be expanded 
to include all areas used by Peninsular bighorn sheep. One commenter 
felt that critical habitat should encompass a smaller area than 
essential habitat. Another commenter stated that critical habitat does 
not include some areas that should be included, specifically, ``the 
southern extension of the In-Ko-Pah Mountains'' in San Diego County, 
including ``Goat Mountain, Old George Mountain, Music Mountain and 
Rattlesnake Mountain''. Several commenters expressed support for the 
proposed critical habitat designation.
    Our Response: 16 U.S.C. 1532(5)(C) states that ``critical habitat 
should not include the entire geographic area that can be occupied by 
the threatened or endangered species'' absent a finding of exceptional 
circumstances by the Secretary. We based our critical habitat 
designation on the Recovery Team's delineation of essential habitat in 
the approved Recovery Plan, dated October 25, 2000. The Team used their 
collective experience and knowledge of the ecology of bighorn sheep in 
the Peninsular Ranges to develop a method for delineating essential 
habitat, which is described in Appendix B of the Recovery Plan. The 
upper elevation boundary was largely determined by dense vegetation 
types, because bighorn sheep require open terrain to detect and avoid 
predators, such as mountain lions. The lower elevation boundary was 
determined by the topography, existing urbanization, and bighorn sheep 
foraging behavior and movement patterns. The Recovery Team did not 
include all areas that have documented historic and current use by 
bighorn sheep; only those areas that are regarded as essential for 
recovery were included. Because the Recovery Plan definition of 
essential habitat is essentially the same as the statutory definition 
of critical habitat, we have elected to make them as similar as 
possible, given the practical limitations of legal boundary 
    While portions of the In-Ko-Pah Mountains are included in critical 
habitat, we did not include the specific lands listed above in the 
proposal because we concluded these lands were not essential for the 
conservation of bighorn sheep. This conclusion was based largely on the 
lack of bighorn sightings and the dominance of dense chaparral 
vegetation in the area, which bighorn sheep generally don't use.
    Comment: Several commenters suggested that certain lands proposed 
within critical habitat be excluded. Suggested land for exclusion 
included: areas with flood control and water supply structures; and 
lands with mining interests.
    Our Response: We evaluated all submitted site-specific 
documentation to determine whether modifications to the proposal were 
appropriate. Based on discussions with Riverside County Flood Control 
and Water Conservation District, Desert Water Agency, and Coachella 
Valley Water District, normal operations and maintenance of existing 
facilities would not conflict with the management objectives for 
essential habitat. Flood control facilities typically occur in washes 
and alluvial habitats that still support the same important habitat 
values as surrounding areas. As such, these facilities are not de facto 
unsuitable or detrimental to bighorn sheep use. If reasonably managed, 
these areas can fulfill their intended function while at the same time 
contributing to bighorn sheep conservation. As described above, we met 
with numerous local jurisdictions and private landowners to refine 
critical habitat boundaries along the heavily parcelized urban 
interface with Coachella Valley. Our objective was to collaboratively 
blend the critical habitat designation with the essential habitat in 
the Recovery Plan, as well as the preserve design in the ongoing multi-
species planning effort to increase biological precision and minimize 
the potential for unnecessary social and economic effects.
    There appear to be very few active mines within critical habitat 
and, as with the construction and maintenance of infrastructural 
facilities, any future project proposals will be reviewed case by case 
under the regulatory provisions of sections 7 and 9 of the Act to 
determine whether mining is compatible with sheep survival and 
    Comment: One commenter questioned why private lands were included 
when so much public land was available for designation.
    Our Response: The location and distribution of private lands 
mandated their inclusion. Many of the valuable lower elevation habitats 
with key forage and water resources essential to the conservation of 
the species are located on private lands. In addition, the prevailing 
checkerboard landownership pattern of intermixed public and private 
lands in many areas of the Peninsular Ranges requires their inclusion 
because the primary constituent elements transcend ownership 
    Comment: Several commenters noted that their lands should be 
excluded because their expert sheep consultants have studied their 
properties and concluded that they are unsuitable or of low value.
    Our Response: Some commenters have submitted consultant reports, 
but then refused to meet with us to discuss the information or visit 
the proposed project site, whereas others allege they have site 
specific information but did not submit it for our review. Either way, 
we cannot rely upon such data in making regulatory decisions if we are 
unable to discuss, clarify, or inspect site specific information. In 
other circumstances, we had in our possession reliable information 
which contradicted what was provided by the commenter. In situations 
such as these, we did not modify the proposed critical habitat 
    Comment: Several commenters criticized the critical habitat 
proposal for not specifically excluding previously approved projects.
    Our Response: Many project proponents have reached an agreement 
with us on the details of project proposals and, consequently, we have 
refined the final designation from that in the proposed rule to more 
closely conform with the actual essential habitat, using a combination 
of a 100-meter grid system and conveniently located landmarks. In this 
way, we avoided designation over as much of the non-essential portion 
of project sites as

[[Page 8659]]

possible. We will continue to work with applicants with whom we have 
yet to reach agreement on how to avoid jeopardy or adverse modification 
of habitat deemed essential to the conservation of the species.
    Comment: One comment suggested that areas below the 2000-foot 
contour should be excluded; another suggested the 1000-foot contour; 
while another suggested the 700-foot contour.
    Our Response: These conflicting comments appear to address the 
objectives of specific proposed developments and not bighorn biology. 
This rule and the Recovery Plan clearly document the importance of the 
unique habitat values provided by lower elevation habitats, such as 
washes and alluvial fans, and the critical role these areas play in 
bighorn sheep recovery. These lower elevation areas support different 
vegetation communities than adjacent steep rocky areas, because of the 
different soil compositions and moisture regimes in less steep areas. 
Consequently, these areas produce nutritious forage at critical times 
of the year for bighorn sheep. Much of this low elevation habitat has 
already been lost to development. Rather than choosing an arbitrary 
contour, we based the boundary on biological criteria discussed in the 
Recovery Plan and included habitat providing the primary constituent 
elements within 0.8 km (0.5 mi) of slopes greater than or equal to 20 
    Comment: Tribal lands should be excluded from critical habitat.
    Our Response: We have a trust responsibility to work with Tribes in 
designating critical habitat. We have been working with the affected 
Tribes to address their concerns and develop compatible management 
strategies. Though these discussions are ongoing, the current absence 
of agreements or completed land-use management plans does not allow us 
to exclude Tribal lands from designation. We have determined that 
Tribal lands are important to bighorn conservation because they provide 
critical physical and biological features that are essential to the 
conservation of the species.
    Comment: Numerous commenters requested that areas without 
documented evidence of bighorn use be removed from critical habitat. 
They also claimed that all habitat is not occupied by bighorn sheep, 
contrary to statements in the proposed rule, and only a portion of 
designated lands contain suitable habitat.
    Our Response: Most of these comments refer to developed areas that 
were excluded by text within the proposed rule but were located within 
the critical habitat boundary. Most of these areas have been removed by 
using the finer resolution of the 100-meter grid mapping approach. 
Other comments suggested that if a focused survey for bighorn sheep was 
negative, the surveyed area should be removed from critical habitat. 
Such logic overlooks the fact that bighorn sheep are wide-ranging 
animals adapted to exploiting sparsely distributed resources over large 
tracts of habitat for feeding, breeding, sheltering, and dispersing. 
Bighorn sheep use certain areas more frequently than others, and these 
areas are termed home ranges or core use areas. The home range concept 
implies that the probability of locating an individual bighorn sheep 
will be greater within its home range, not that bighorns confine all of 
their movements to home ranges. Furthermore, home ranges may shift over 
time, and the resources bighorn sheep require from outside their home 
ranges may be critical for their survival.
    Rams and ewes have been documented to move many miles beyond their 
normal home ranges and may infrequently use certain areas on a seasonal 
or annual basis. This differs from the common public perception that 
occupancy means the detectable presence of bighorn sheep in a 
particular area at any time throughout the breeding and non-breeding 
seasons. Furthermore, the present reduced population level has a 
contracted geographic distribution. As the population recovers, the 
number and size of home ranges should expand, providing increased 
connectivity to areas where bighorn sheep were formerly more common. 
The goal is to delineate an area that provides the opportunity for a 
reduced population to survive and recover. Given the bighorn sheep's 
wide-ranging habits, as well as numerous historic and recent 
distributional records extending outside the area designated as 
critical habitat, we find no basis for concluding that bighorn sheep 
are absent from or incapable of using particular areas within 
designated critical habitat.
    Comment: The proposed rule should exclude the area governed by 
existing and pending HCPs.
    Our Response: Since no approved HCPs currently exist within the 
proposed critical habitat boundary, none were excluded. Our approach to 
any HCPs approved in the future is discussed in response to the next 
    Comment: Two commenters stated that the final critical habitat rule 
should provide automatic removal from critical habitat of areas covered 
by future HCPs, while one commenter stated that adjustments could not 
be automatically made and any proposed changes need to be published in 
the Federal Register.
    Our Response: We anticipate that future HCPs in the range of 
bighorn sheep may include it as a covered species. We expect that HCPs 
undertaken by local jurisdictions (e.g., counties, cities) and other 
parties will identify, protect, and provide appropriate management for 
those specific lands within the boundaries of the plans that are 
essential for the long-term conservation of bighorn sheep. We fully 
expect that any future approval of HCPs and section 10(a)(1)(B) permits 
would show that covered activities carried out in accordance with the 
provisions of the HCPs and section 10(a)(1)(B) permits would not result 
in the destruction or adverse modification of critical habitat 
designated for Peninsular bighorn sheep. By law, any proposed changes 
to critical habitat cannot be automatically made and must be published 
in the Federal Register.
    Comment: Several commenters recommended that we postpone issuing a 
final determination until a more specific and defensible critical 
habitat proposal can be written and an accurate and quantitative 
economic analysis be conducted.
    Our Response: We are required to use the best available information 
in designating critical habitat. Under our settlement agreement, we 
must complete the designation of bighorn critical habitat by January 
15, 2001. We solicited any new biological data, invited public 
participation during the comment period, conducted public hearings on 
the proposed rule and subsequent comment periods, and held a public 
workshop for the draft economic analysis and proposed rule. These 
comments have been taken into account in the development of this final 
determination. Accordingly, we have used the best scientific and 
commercial information available in the designation.
    Comment: Some landowners expressed concern that because their 
properties were located within critical habitat, they would be subject 
to additional constraints under the California Environmental Quality 
Act (CEQA).
    Our Response: According to section 15065 of the CEQA guidelines, 
environmental impact reports are required by local lead agencies when, 
among other things, a project has the potential to ``reduce the number 
or restrict the range of an endangered, rare or threatened species.'' 
Thus, local lead agencies must address potential effects to listed 
species regardless of whether

[[Page 8660]]

critical habitat is designated. Local lead agencies would make the 
determination of whether critical habitat is pertinent under State law 
for separate projects.
    Comment: Several landowners expressed concern about how critical 
habitat designation may affect their particular properties and what 
they would and would not be allowed to do in the future because of the 
designation. Some of these landowners expressed concerns that they 
would need to seek incidental take authorization from the Service for 
every type of action taken on their property.
    Our Response: We are sensitive to the concerns of individuals 
concerning their property rights. As described in the rule, 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. The designation of critical habitat for bighorn sheep 
does not impose any additional requirements or conditions on property 
owners beyond those required by the listing of bighorn sheep as a 
federally endangered species, unless a Federal nexus (e.g., permit, 
funding, right-of-way, loan guarantee) is involved. If a Federal nexus 
exists on private property, the involved Federal agency would have a 
responsibility under section 7 to consult with us on any proposed 
actions that may affect a listed species.
    All landowners, public and private, are responsible for making sure 
their actions do not result in the unauthorized ``take'' of a listed 
species, regardless of whether or not the activity occurs within 
designated critical habitat. ``Take'' is defined by regulation to 
include ``significant habitat modification or degradation that actually 
kills or injures wildlife''. The definition was upheld by the U.S. 
Supreme Court in Sweet Home Chapter of Communities for a Great Oregon 
et al. v. Babbitt. Take prohibitions apply regardless and are 
independent of critical habitat designation. The designation of 
critical habitat does not expand the requirement for incidental take 

Issue 2: Bighorn Sheep Biology and Management

    Comment: Connectivity needs to be maintained between ewe groups and 
areas needed for long-term recovery, e.g., south of Interstate 8.
    Our Response: Connectivity is a primary constituent element for 
Peninsular bighorn sheep, and the current critical habitat 
configuration attempts to provide long-term connectivity between ewe 
groups, including the area south of Interstate 8. Within the areas 
designated as critical habitat, we will work with affected interests to 
resolve existing barriers to bighorn sheep movement, such as fences and 
high traffic roads, as outlined in the Recovery Plan.
    Comment: Two commenters felt that cattle grazing was compatible 
with bighorn sheep recovery, and that cattle grazing had been unfairly 
targeted by the designation of critical habitat.
    Our Response: Federal agencies that issue grazing permits on lands 
containing endangered species are required to consult with us. These 
consultations are required by section 7 of the Act, and result from the 
listing of the species, even in the absence of the designation of 
critical habitat. The purposes of section 7 consultations are to 
analyze the effects of grazing practices, to determine if they 
jeopardize the continued existence of the endangered species, to avoid 
and minimize the impact of incidental take, and, if needed, to suggest 
reasonable and prudent alternatives that will avoid jeopardy. Although 
they will also have to consult on whether they will destroy or 
adversely modify critical habitat, the designation of critical habitat 
does not necessarily affect grazing allotments beyond the initial 
requirements of listing the species. Some grazing operations are 
currently involved in disputes with land management agencies. These 
legal actions and their settlements are separate from the designation 
of critical habitat and the section 7 process.
    Comment: Several commenters felt that the designation of critical 
habitat was unnecessary, because the decline of bighorn sheep in the 
Peninsular Ranges has been caused solely or mainly by mountain lion 
predation. They felt that controlling mountain lions would, by itself, 
result in the recovery of bighorn sheep.
    Our Response: Bighorn sheep evolved during the Ice Ages with a 
suite of large predators, including mountain lions. Consequently, they 
developed effective defenses, such as good eyesight, vigilance, herding 
behavior, and the ability to move with great agility and speed across 
steep, rocky terrain. Many of these traits were shaped by the presence 
of large carnivores, some of which became extinct long ago. However, 
both bighorn sheep and mountain lions have survived to present times. 
The two species have coexisted in the Peninsular Ranges for thousands 
of years.
    Research indicates that in certain circumstances individual 
mountain lions may develop a preference for bighorn sheep, while other 
resident lions spend little time pursuing bighorn sheep. In the past, 
larger, healthier bighorn populations were capable of withstanding the 
periodic mortality caused by mountain lions. However, once a population 
declines below a certain threshold, predation can have a limiting 
effect. Man has impacted the landscape greatly, and other factors, such 
as disease, urbanization, highway construction, human disturbance, and 
habitat loss, have reduced the population to such a low level that any 
mortality, including mountain lion predation, becomes very significant. 
Thus, the decline of bighorn sheep has not been caused by one single 
factor, and a recovery strategy must address a complex array of 
interacting mortality factors to be successful.
    Comment: Several commenters stated that recreational opportunities 
need to be considered when designating critical habitat. Two commenters 
suggested that the Coral Reef Mountains, adjacent to La Quinta, be 
removed from critical habitat to accommodate present and perceived 
future recreation needs in the area. One commenter requested that the 
Lake Cahuilla Recreation Area be removed because of the potential for 
affecting recreational activities, especially trail use. Other 
commenters were concerned that traditional hikes would be curtailed and 
popular areas closed, especially in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park.
    Our Response: Critical habitat designation does not automatically 
eliminate recreational opportunities. With proper management 
recreational activities can be compatible with bighorn recovery. 
Regardless of critical habitat, we are working with local interests, 
including State and Federal land management agencies, to prepare a 
trails management plan as part of existing agency responsibilities and 
the Coachella Valley multi-species planning program. Bighorn sheep have 
been recently documented using the Coral Reef Mountains as lambing 
habitat. Given the current low population numbers in the Peninsular 
Ranges, protection of lambing habitat is essential to recovery. We have 
discussed with the City of La Quinta and project proponents in the area 
alternative trail alignments and other opportunities that are 
compatible with bighorn recovery.
    Lake Cahuilla and surrounding areas at the southern end of the 
Coral Reef Mountains are owned by the Bureau of Reclamation, which we 
assume will consult with us through section 7 on any potential 
activities that may affect bighorn sheep. We anticipate that 
recreational activities associated with an

[[Page 8661]]

urban lake will be compatible with bighorn recovery. A regional trails 
plan involving Federal, State and local entities is in preparation and 
can be designed to be compatible with bighorn sheep conservation. In 
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, critical habitat designation is 
unlikely to affect recreational hiking because most Park activities 
lack a Federal nexus and the State is implementing a land-use plan that 
appears to be compatible with bighorn sheep conservation.
    Comment: Several commenters stated that the proposed critical 
habitat designation was ``not specific'' and was too ``expansive'' and 
``overbroad'' and, therefore, failed to comply with Congressional 
intent to restrict critical habitat to those areas ``essential to the 
conservation of the species.'' Other commenters stated that the 
designation was not inclusive enough and failed to include areas that 
bighorn have used and are necessary for recovery of the species.
    Our Response: Determination of critical habitat for bighorn sheep 
in the Peninsular Ranges was based on information and expertise 
provided through the recovery planning process. We assembled a Recovery 
Team to prepare a Recovery Plan, which included the delineation of 
essential habitat. During the development of the essential habitat 
boundary, in conjunction with the Coachella Valley multiple species 
planning effort, affected stakeholders were included in discussions to 
refine the essential habitat boundary area and a reserve design for the 
multi-species plan. During a succession of meetings, areas without 
long-term conservation value were excluded from delineated essential 
habitat. This process resulted in the essential habitat delineation 
that was described in the approved Recovery Plan. The designation of 
critical habitat reflects these efforts by adhering to the delineation 
of essential habitat as closely as possible. We believe this to be a 
logically and scientifically sound approach to critical habitat 
designation that provides the specific habitat necessary for survival 
and recovery, while taking into consideration the concerns of local 
government and landowners.
    Comment: The primary constituent elements described in the proposed 
rule were too vague, and the exact locations of each of the primary 
constituent elements should be discussed in the final designation of 
critical habitat.
    Our Response: The biological needs of bighorn sheep can be 
discussed at several levels of complexity. The primary constituent 
elements are intended to denote the most basic habitat components 
required by bighorn sheep for survival. Within individual primary 
constituent elements, additional layers of complexity could be 
described, especially for complex higher organisms, such as bighorn 
sheep. For example, availability of adequate forage could be further 
described by listing each of the forage species utilized by bighorn 
sheep, and then further described by listing the nutritional 
composition of each forage species. Since bighorn sheep forage on a 
wide variety of plant species (Turner (1973) recorded 43 species), 
attempts to comprehensively list them, as well as all of the other 
biological requirements of bighorn sheep would not be possible. 
Similarly, an attempt to precisely describe the location of each 
resource would also be impractical. For example, water sources change 
in response to weather patterns and temporary water sources can be as 
important as permanent sources. Scientists and land managers are 
continually learning more about bighorn sheep and the ecosystem that 
they depend on, therefore, a reductionist approach to describing the 
biological needs of bighorn sheep would likely fail to include all of 
the environmental, physiological, and behavioral complexities needed 
for their survival. Therefore, we chose to discuss the biological 
requirements of bighorn sheep at an ecosystem level, thus insuring that 
none of the particular requirements of bighorn sheep would be excluded. 
More detailed information for specific proposed activities will be 
developed during the section 7 consultation process.
    Comment: Several commenters questioned the applicability of 
metapopulation theory to bighorn sheep in the Peninsular Ranges.
    Our Response: As described in more detail in the Recovery Plan, 
Peninsular bighorn sheep are considered a metapopulation because ewe 
groups are connected by movement of rams and ewes. However, bighorn 
sheep are slow colonizers and the processes of colonization and 
extinction extend over long time periods. Without proper management, an 
unstable metapopulation could result if extinctions occurred at a 
faster rate than colonizations, thereby lessening the likelihood of 
successful recovery of the species.
    Comment: One commenter recommended moving sheep out of areas 
proposed for development to make critical habitat more achievable.
    Our Response: The proposal to move bighorn sheep and critical 
habitat out of conflict areas presumes that the areas in question would 
not be essential to conservation. We have coordinated this designation 
through the recovery planning and section 10(a)(1)(B) regional habitat 
conservation planning program in the Coachella Valley to determine 
where critical habitat boundaries needed movement and refinement. The 
results of this coordination are reflected in the final designation, 
which removed approximately 12,430 ha (30,716 ac) from the proposed 

Issue 3: Procedural Issues

    Comment: Critical habitat should not have been proposed before an 
economic and other impact analyses were completed, and the opportunity 
to comment on the economic analysis and the proposed rule was limited.
    Our Response: Pursuant to 50 CFR 424.19, we are not required to 
conduct an economic analysis at the time critical habitat is initially 
proposed. We realize that under ideal circumstances we would provide 
the draft economic analysis at the same time as the proposal. However, 
due to the short time frame available to us to complete the proposal 
and a heavy economic analysis workload, we were unable to do so. We 
published the proposed determination in the Federal Register (65 FR 
41405), invited public comment, and held two public hearings. We used 
comments received on the proposed critical habitat to assist in 
developing the draft economic analysis. We then reopened public comment 
period on the draft economic analysis and the proposed designation for 
33 days, and held a public workshop. Furthermore, we were unable to 
provide a longer comment period given the short time frame ordered by 
the Court.
    Comment: Critical habitat designation requires a National 
Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review.
    Our Response: As stated in the proposed rule, we have determined 
that compliance with NEPA is not required in connection with 
regulations adopted pursuant to section 4(a) of the Act. Further, the 
Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that, within its Circuit, 
compliance with NEPA for critical habitat designations is not required. 
We published a notice outlining our reasons for this determination in 
the Federal Register on October 25, 1983 (48 FR 49244).
    Comment: The role of the Service as the sole determiner of physical 
and biological features is inappropriate and dictatorial. The 
unwillingness to recognize scientific peer reviews is further evidence 
of the Service's unresponsiveness to public comment.

[[Page 8662]]

    Our Response: Section 3(5)(A)(I) of the Act and regulations at 50 
CFR 424.12 require us to determine the physical and biological features 
(primary constituent elements) that are essential to the conservation 
of the species. In this case, we used the best science available, 
including published scientific literature, expertise of Recovery Team 
members, other biologists familiar with Peninsular bighorn sheep, and 
the Recovery Plan. The Recovery Team includes scientists from a variety 
of Federal and State agencies, Tribal, and other public, and private 
research institutions with an impressive depth of experience working 
with bighorn sheep in the Peninsular Ranges. The public hearings, a 
public workshop, and two comment periods, provided ample opportunity 
for public involvement. All input from the public was evaluated for 
incorporation into the final rule. We also solicited peer review 
comments from four scientists familiar with Peninsular bighorn sheep.
    Comment: Map exhibits in the proposed rule and at the public 
hearings did not show enough detail.
    Our Response: The maps in the Federal Register are meant to provide 
a general location and shape of critical habitat. At the public 
hearings and workshop, these maps were expanded into wall-size aerial 
photos to assist the public in better understanding the proposal. These 
larger scale GIS products also were provided to individuals upon 
request. The legal descriptions, based on the Public Land Survey 
system, are readily plotted and transferable to a variety of mapping 
    Comment: Conclusions drawn in the proposed rule lack scientific 
citations and/or rely on unpublished science.
    Our Response: We used the recovery planning process to assist in 
the preparation of the proposed and final critical habitat designation. 
Integration of these processes strengthened the scientific basis and 
minimized the potential contradictions or discrepancies between the two 
processes. Please refer to the approved Recovery Plan for a more 
detailed treatment of the biological literature and recovery concepts. 
Additional biological explanation and references were added to this 
final rule in response to public comments.
    Comment: Two commenters stated that Peninsular bighorn sheep are 
Ovis canadensis nelsoni and, therefore, are not deserving of a critical 
habitat designation.
    Our Response: The bighorn sheep in the Peninsular Ranges are listed 
as a distinct vertebrate population segment. Please refer to 63 FR 
13134, dated March 18, 1998, for a discussion of the applicability of 
our policy on implementing the Act's provisions for listing distinct 
vertebrate population segments.
    Comment: Several commenters requested that additional hearings be 
held in other areas to accommodate a wider group of affected groups and 
individuals. Suggested areas included San Diego and Orange counties.
    Our Response: Holding public hearings in multiple areas would have 
been more convenient for some people. However, administrative costs, 
staffing limitations, and the limited attendance at the hearings that 
were held, were all taken into consideration in deciding on the 
appropriate number of hearings to be held. Palm Springs was chosen for 
the public hearing because it is the closest urban center to the 
proposed critical habitat boundary and, therefore, accommodated most 
interests directly affected. While much of the proposed critical 
habitat is in the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park portion of San Diego 
County, this area is remotely located from populous regions. Since the 
Park has management goals that are largely compatible with bighorn 
sheep recovery, and the likelihood of Federal involvement is limited, 
the effect of critical habitat designation in this area is likely to be 
small. Since no critical habitat for Peninsular bighorn sheep was 
proposed in Orange County, and attendance was relatively small at the 
Palm Springs hearing, meetings in outlying areas were not considered to 
be a priority use of the limited resources available to us in 
developing this rule.
    Comment: Tribal interests contended that not enough was known about 
bighorn use on their lands to warrant designation of critical habitat.
    Our Response: Past survey efforts for bighorn sheep have been led 
by the CDFG and other cooperators. We have obtained much of their 
information and provided it to the Tribes and public in the approved 
Recovery Plan, and in a separate bighorn sheep distribution map, dated 
October 13, 2000. Though the State and its cooperators did not agree to 
provide many of the attributes behind the data, we are convinced by the 
best available information that the area that we are designating as 
critical habitat is essential to the conservation of the species. We 
intend to continue to work with the Tribes on obtaining additional 
information so that we can fulfill our responsibilities to the them.
    Comment: One commenter raised a series of questions related to 
Tribal lands and the Recovery Plan.
    Our Response: Questions related to the Recovery Plan are better 
addressed separately, and we are available to discuss these issues 
within the recovery planning context. For critical habitat, Tribal 
lands were assessed using the same physical and biological criteria as 
other lands in determining their potential contribution to bighorn 
conservation. These criteria, and the approach described in Appendix B 
of the Recovery Plan, indicated that some Tribal lands merited 
inclusion as critical habitat.
    Comment: One Tribe commented that their past and present land 
management practices have been compatible with bighorn sheep 
conservation, and that their future HCP precludes the necessity of 
designating critical habitat on Tribal lands.
    Our Response: Though past management practices of Tribal lands have 
apparently, for the most part, been compatible with bighorn sheep 
recovery, Tribes have not informed us of the details of their current 
and past management practices. We are preparing agreements with some of 
the Tribes that better define coordination protocols for addressing 
issues relating to the Act. If these agreements lead to future HCPs 
that contain measures that conserve bighorn sheep habitat, critical 
habitat could be revised and areas covered by the HCP either excluded 
under a section 4(b)(2) analysis or removed because they no longer meet 
the definition of critical habitat. Pursuant to the definition of 
critical habitat in section 3 of the Act, any area so designated may 
require ``special management considerations or protections.'' Adequate 
special management or protection is provided by a legally operative 
plan that addresses the maintenance and improvement of the essential 
elements and provides for the long-term conservation of the species. 
The Service considers a plan adequate when it meets all of the 
following three criteria: (1) The plan provides a conservation benefit 
to the species (i.e., the plan must maintain or provide for an increase 
in the species' population or the enhancement or restoration of its 
habitat within the area covered by the plan; (2) the plan provides 
assurances that the management plan will be implemented (i.e., those 
responsible for implementing the plan are capable of accomplishing the 
objectives, have an implementation schedule and/or have adequate 
funding to implement the management plan); and, (3) the plan provides 
assurances the conservation plan will be effective (i.e., it identifies 
biological goals, has provisions for reporting progress, and is of a 
duration sufficient to implement the

[[Page 8663]]

plan and achieve the plan's goals and objectives). If an area is 
covered by a plan that meets these criteria, it does not constitute 
critical habitat as defined by the Act.

Issue 4: Economics

    Comment: Some commenters disagreed with the assumption applied in 
the economic analysis that the designation of critical habitat will 
cause no impacts above and beyond those caused by the listing of the 
species within the essential habitat line identified in the Peninsular 
bighorn sheep Recovery Plan. They assert that ``adverse modification'' 
and ``jeopardy'' are different, will result in different impacts, and 
should be analyzed as such in the economic analysis.
    Our Response: 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 both the survival and recovery of a listed 
species. Actions likely to result in the destruction or adverse 
modification of critical habitat are those that would appreciably 
reduce the value of critical habitat for the survival and recovery of a 
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 result in 
the destruction or adverse modification of critical habitat would 
typically result in jeopardy to Peninsular bighorn sheep. Through broad 
distribution of the Recovery Plan, Federal agencies are aware of our 
concern for bighorn sheep within this area. Given the similarities of 
essential and critical habitat, the designation likely will not result 
in any appreciable increase in the number of section 7 consultations or 
the impacts of these consultations on actions.
    Comment: Some commenters were concerned that, while we discussed 
impacts that are more appropriately attributable to the listing of 
bighorn sheep than to the proposed designation of critical habitat, we 
did not include in the baseline those costs attributable to the 
    Our Response: The Act is clear that listing decisions be based 
solely on scientific criteria, using the best available scientific and 
commercial data available (section 4(b) of the Act). Congress also made 
it clear in the Conference Report accompanying the 1982 amendments to 
the Act that ``economic considerations have no relevance to 
determinations regarding the status of species''. If we were to 
consider the economic impacts of listing in the critical habitat 
designation analysis it would lead to confusion, because the 
designation analysis is meant to determine whether areas should be 
excluded from the designation of critical habitat based solely upon the 
costs and benefits of the designation, and not upon the costs and 
benefits of the listing. Additionally, because the Act specifically 
precludes us from considering the economic impacts of the listing, it 
would be improper to consider those impacts in the context of an 
economic analysis of the critical habitat designation. Our economic 
analyses address how the actions we are currently considering may 
affect current or planned activities and practices; they do not address 
impacts associated with previous Federal actions, which in this case 
includes the listing of Peninsular bighorn sheep as an endangered 
species. This method is consistent with the standards published by the 
Office of Management and Budget for preparing economic analyses under 
Executive Order 12866.
    Comment: Some commenters stated that we should have estimated the 
cumulative effect of the critical habitat designation for bighorn sheep 
along with the effect of future pending and proposed critical habitat 
for other species in Southern California.
    Our Response: Future pending and proposed critical habitat 
designations for other species in the area will be part of separate 
rulemakings and consequently, their economic effects will be considered 
separately. We are required to only consider the effect of the proposed 
government action, which in this case is the designation of critical 
habitat for bighorn sheep. Again, the appropriate baseline to use in an 
analysis of a Federal action is the future without the proposed 
regulation. Against this baseline, we attempt to identify and measure 
the incremental costs and benefits associated with the government 
action. Because the Peninsular bighorn sheep is already a federally 
protected species, any effect this listing has on the regulated 
community is considered part of the baseline scenario, which remains 
largely unaffected by our critical habitat designation.
    Comment: Some commenters believe that the draft economic analysis 
underestimated the potential costs of critical habitat designation.
    Our Response: In preparing the economic analysis, we estimated the 
potential effects from critical habitat designation. As previously 
stated, we believe that many of the effects perceived by the public to 
be attributable to critical habitat would actually occur regardless of 
critical habitat designation because Peninsular bighorn sheep are a 
federally protected species. Because we are attempting to estimate 
potential future effects from critical habitat designation, our 
estimates are based on potential future activities that are typical for 
the area. In reality, some individuals may experience impacts greater 
than we estimated, while others experience less. On the whole, however, 
we have provided a reasonable estimation of the potential future 
impacts of critical habitat designation for Peninsular bighorn sheep.
    Comment: Some commenters believe that the economic analysis is 
flawed because it ignores regional and local government economic 
projection data and that critical habitat designation could have an 
effect on projected housing demand in the area.
    Our Response: Our draft economic analysis provided a socio-economic 
profile of the proposed critical habitat area, which was based on 
Federal, State, and local government data. While we acknowledged that 
critical habitat designation within the ``uncertain lands'' could have 
a small impact due to an increase in section 7 consultations, we do not 
believe that these potential future consultations will have significant 
impacts on land development patterns within the Coachella Valley.
    Comment: Some commenters believed we should have speculated about 
property value effects to private landowners due to critical habitat 
    Our Response: Our economic analysis acknowledged that critical 
habitat designation may, in some instances, have short-term effects on 
private property values. However, as we stated in the analysis, we did 
not attempt to quantify such effects due to their highly speculative 
nature and propensity to have offsetting effects. Since we conducted 
the draft economic analysis, a study was released by the Coalition for 
Sonoran Desert Protection that examined the impact of designating 
habitat for the cactus ferruginous pygmy-owl in southern Arizona. 
Performed 1 year after the designation, the study found that dire 
predictions made by developers in that region have not materialized. 
Specifically, high-density housing development has not

[[Page 8664]]

slowed, the value of vacant land has risen, land sales have continued, 
and the construction sector has continued its steady growth (McKenney 
2000). We similarly believe that critical habitat designation for 
bighorn sheep will also not likely exert a measurable influence on real 
estate development within the Coachella Valley.
    Comment: Some commenters believe that the economic analysis 
overstated potential benefits of critical habitat designation.
    Our Response: Our draft economic analysis discussed the potential 
benefits associated with preserving bighorn sheep, but did not attempt 
to differentiate between benefits attributable to listing, and benefits 
attributable to critical habitat designation. Because critical habitat 
designation for bighorn sheep will have little effect on the current 
and planned activities in the Coachella Valley, we also believe that 
the benefits from designation will likewise be limited.
    Comment: Some commenters believed that the draft economic analysis 
failed to estimate the potential project modification and delay costs 
that could be associated with potential additional section 7 
consultations due to critical habitat designation.
    Our Response: Our economic analysis attempted to quantify the 
effects of future section 7 consultations likely to occur due to 
critical habitat designation. This estimate included many of the 
discrete activities that may occur during the consultation process, 
which included project modification and delay costs. We estimated these 
costs to range between $25,000 and $900,000. These cost estimates were 
only meant to represent potential average changes in a ``typical'' 
development project's description that sometimes occur during the 
course of the consultation process and that may be attributed to 
critical habitat designation. Often project designs are changed or 
projects are delayed due to factors outside the scope of the Act, which 
may be caused by other Federal or State regulations and local zoning 
ordinances. As previously stated, due to the similarity in definitions, 
we believe that planned projects that could adversely modify critical 
habitat in most cases would also cause jeopardy to the continued 
existence of the species. Consequently, such effects would occur 
regardless of critical habitat designation.
    Comment: One commenter stated that the without critical habitat 
baseline conditions need to include the recent creation of the Santa 
Rosa and San Jacinto National Monument.
    Our Response: At the time the draft was written, the Santa Rosa and 
San Jacinto National Monument Act had yet to be signed into law. 
However, our economic analysis discussed the potential effect creating 
the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto National Monument would have on proposed 
critical habitat. Both the BLM and Forest Service are required to 
develop a management plan within 3 years following enactment. Because 
these agencies are already aware of our concern for bighorn sheep 
within these areas, we do not believe the designation of critical 
habitat will have incremental effects on the need to consult.
    Comment: Several commenters voiced concern that they were not 
directly contacted for their opinions on the economic impacts of 
critical habitat designation.
    Our Response: We are not required to contact every potential 
stakeholder to develop an economic analysis. We were able to understand 
the issues of concern to the local community based on public comments 
submitted on the proposed rule, on transcripts from public hearings, 
and from detailed discussions with Service representatives. To clarify 
issues, we also contacted representatives from other Federal, State, 
and local government agencies, as well as private landowners. When the 
draft economic analysis was completed, we provided notice of its 
availability in the Federal Register and local newspapers, and 
requested public comment. In particular, we requested comments on the 
adequacy of the economic analysis.

Summary of Changes From the Proposed Rule

    Based on a review of public comments received on the proposed 
determination of critical habitat for bighorn sheep, we re-evaluated 
our proposed designation of critical habitat. This resulted in one 
significant change that is reflected in this final determination. Based 
on public comment, due to the highly urbanized interface from Palm 
Springs to La Quinta in Riverside County, we refined the minimum 
mapping unit for the designation from one-quarter PLS section 
(approximately \1/4\ square mile), or UTM equivalent in the Spanish 
Land Grant areas, to a 100-m UTM grid that approximates the boundary of 
lands essential to bighorn sheep conservation. Where feasible, 
identifiable landmarks, such as flood control channels and streets were 
used to further refine the boundary and increase on-the-ground clarity. 
This resulted in the removal of significant urban or developed areas. 
The overall refinement of critical habitat boundaries due to the 
revised mapping scale resulted in a reduction of approximately 12,430 
ha (30,716 ac).

Economic Analysis

    Section 4(b)(2) of the Act requires us to designate critical 
habitat on the basis of the best scientific and commercial data 
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.
    Economic effects caused by listing bighorn sheep as an endangered 
species and by other statutes are the baseline against which the 
effects of critical habitat designation are evaluated. The economic 
analysis must then examine the incremental economic and conservation 
effects and benefit of the critical habitat designation. Economic 
effects are measured as changes in national income, regional jobs, and 
household income. An analysis of the economic effects of bighorn sheep 
critical habitat designation was prepared (Industrial Economics, Inc. 
2000) and made available for public review (65 FR 62691). The final 
analysis, which reviewed and incorporated public comments, concluded 
that no significant economic impacts are expected from critical habitat 
designation above and beyond that already caused by listing Peninsular 
bighorn sheep.
    The most likely economic effects of critical habitat designation 
are on activities funded, authorized, or carried out by a Federal 
agency. The final analysis examined the effects of the designation on: 
(1) areas included in the proposed critical habitat designation, but 
removed from the final rule; (2) re-initiation of section 7 
consultations; (3) length of time in which section 7 consultations are 
completed; and (4) new consultations resulting from the determination. 
Because areas proposed for critical habitat are within the geographic 
range of bighorn sheep, activities that may affect critical habitat may 
also affect the species, and would thus be subject to consultation 
whether or not critical habitat is designated. We believe that any 
project that would adversely modify or destroy critical habitat likely 
would also jeopardize the continued existence of the species, and that 
reasonable and prudent alternatives to avoid jeopardizing the species 

[[Page 8665]]

also avoid adverse modification of critical habitat. Thus, no 
regulatory burden or associated significant additional costs would 
accrue because of critical habitat above and beyond that resulting from 
listing. Our economic analysis does recognize that there may be costs 
from delays associated with reinitiating completed consultations after 
the critical habitat designation is made final. There also may be 
economic effects due to the reaction of the real estate market to 
critical habitat designation, as real estate values may be lowered due 
to perceived increase in the regulatory burden. We believe this impact 
will be short-term, however, and does not justify exclusion of any 
    A copy of the final economic analysis and description of the 
exclusion process with supporting documents are included in our 
administrative record and may be obtained by contacting our office (see 
ADDRESSES section).

Required Determinations

Regulatory Planning and Review

    This document has been reviewed by the Office of Management and 
Budget (OMB), in accordance with Executive Order 12866. OMB makes the 
final determination under Executive Order 12866.
    (a) This rule will not have an annual economic effect of $100 
million or adversely affect an economic sector, productivity, jobs, the 
environment, or other units of government. Peninsular bighorn sheep 
were listed as an endangered species in 1998. In fiscal years 1998 
through 2000, we have conducted three formal section 7 consultations 
with other Federal agencies to ensure that their actions would not 
jeopardize the continued existence of the species.
    The areas designated as critical habitat are currently within the 
geographic range inhabited by bighorn sheep. Under the Act, critical 
habitat may not be adversely modified by a Federal agency action; it 
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 below).

             Table 2.--Impacts of Peninsular Bighorn Sheep Listing and Critical Habitat Designation
                                                                                         Additional activities
                                          Activities potentially affected by species    potentially affected by
        Categories of activities                         listing only                      critical habitat
Federal activities potentially affected.  Activities such as those affecting U.S.     None.
                                           waters by the Army Corps of Engineers
                                           under section 404 of the Clean Water Act;
                                           Regulation of water flows, damming,
                                           diversion, and channelization by Federal
                                           agencies; Regulation of grazing, mining,
                                           and recreation by the Bureau of Land
                                           Management and U.S. Forest Service; Road
                                           construction and maintenance, right-of-
                                           way designation, and regulation of
                                           agricultural activities; Regulation of
                                           airspace and flight plans within the
                                           Federal Aviation Administration
                                           jurisdiction; Military training,
                                           maneuvers, and flights; Construction of
                                           roads and fences along the international
                                           border with Mexico, and associated
                                           immigration enforcement activities by the
                                           Immigration and Naturalization Service;
                                           Hazard mitigation and post-disaster
                                           repairs funded by the Federal Emergency
                                           Management Agency; Construction of
                                           communication sites licensed by the
                                           Federal Communications Commission; and
                                           Activities funded by the U.S.
                                           Environmental Protection Agency, U.S.
                                           Department of Energy, or any other
                                           Federal agency.
Private or other non-Federal Activities   Activities that affect bighorn whether      None.
 potentially affected.                     directly (e.g., grading, overgrazing,
                                           construction, road building, mining,
                                           etc.) or through indirect effects (e.g.,
                                           noise, edge effects, invasion of exotic
                                           species, or fragmentation) that require a
                                           Federal action (permit, authorization, or

    Section 7 requires Federal agencies to ensure that they do not 
jeopardize the continued existence of the species. Based upon our 
experience with the species and its needs, we conclude that any Federal 
action or authorized action that could potentially cause an adverse 
modification of the proposed critical habitat would currently be 
considered as ``jeopardy'' under the Act. Accordingly, the designation 
of critical habitat does not have any incremental impacts above the 
listing on what actions may or may not be conducted by Federal agencies 
or non-Federal persons that receive Federal authorization or funding. 
Non-Federal persons that do not have any Federal involvement with their 
actions are not restricted by the designation of critical habitat, 
however, they continue to be bound by the provisions of the Act 
concerning ``take'' of the species.
    (b) This rule will not 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 
the Peninsular bighorn sheep since the listing in 1998. The prohibition 
against adverse modification of critical habitat is not expected to 
impose any restrictions in addition to those that currently exist 
because all designated critical habitat is within the geographic range 
inhabited by bighorn sheep.
    (c) This rule will not materially affect 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 
significant incremental effects.
    (d) This rule will not raise novel legal or policy issues. This 
final determination follows the requirements for determining critical 
habitat contained in the Act.

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

    In the economic analysis, we determined that designation of 
critical habitat will not have a significant effect on a substantial 
number of small entities. As discussed under Regulatory Planning and 
Review above, and in this final determination, this designation of 
critical habitat for bighorn sheep is not expected to result in any 
restrictions in addition to those currently in existence. As indicated 
on Table 1 (see Critical Habitat Designation section), we have 
designated property owned by Federal,

[[Page 8666]]

State and local governments, and private property.
    Within these areas, the types of Federal actions or authorized 
activities that we have identified as potential concerns are:
    (1) Regulation of activities affecting waters of the United States 
by the Army Corps under section 404 of the Clean Water Act;
    (2) Regulation of water flows, damming, diversion, and 
channelization by Federal agencies;
    (3) Regulation of grazing, mining, and recreation by the BLM or 
Forest Service;
    (4) Road construction and maintenance, right of way designation, 
and regulation of agricultural activities by Federal agencies;
    (5) Regulation of airport improvement activities within the Federal 
Aviation Administration jurisdiction;
    (6) Military training and maneuvers and flights;
    (7) Construction of roads and fences along the International Border 
with Mexico, and associated immigration enforcement activities by the 
Immigration and Naturalization Service;
    (8) Hazard mitigation and post-disaster repairs funded by the 
Federal Emergency Management Agency;
    (9) Construction of communication sites licensed by the Federal 
Communications Commission; and
    (10) Activities funded by the U. S. Environmental Protection 
Agency, Department of Energy, or any other Federal agency.
    Many of these activities sponsored by Federal agencies within 
critical habitat areas are carried out by small entities (as defined by 
the Regulatory Flexibility Act) through contract, grant, permit, or 
other Federal authorization. As discussed in section 1 above, Federal 
agencies engaging in these actions are currently required to comply 
with the listing protections of the Act, and the designation of 
critical habitat is not anticipated to have any additional effects on 
these activities.
    For actions on non-Federal property that do not have a Federal 
connection (such as funding or authorization), the current restrictions 
concerning take of the species remain in effect, and this final 
determination will have no additional restrictions.

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (5 U.S.C. 804(2))

    Based on our economic analysis of this action, we have determined 
that designation of critical habitat will not cause (a) any effect on 
the economy of $100 million or more, (b) any increases in costs or 
prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local 
government agencies, or geographic regions in the economic analysis, or 
(c) any significant adverse effects on competition, employment, 
investment, productivity, innovation, or the ability of U.S.-based 
enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises.

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 will not ``significantly or uniquely'' affect small 
governments. A Small Government Agency Plan is not required. Small 
governments will only be affected to the extent that any Federal funds, 
permits or other authorized activities must ensure that their actions 
will not adversely affect the critical habitat. However, as discussed 
in section 1, these actions are currently subject to equivalent 
restrictions through the listing protections of the species, and no 
further restrictions are anticipated.
    (b) This rule will not produce a Federal mandate 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, the rule does not have 
significant takings implications. A takings implication assessment is 
not required. As discussed above, the designation of critical habitat 
affects only Federal agency actions. The rule will not increase or 
decrease the current restrictions on private property concerning take 
of bighorn sheep. Due to current public knowledge of the species 
protection, the prohibition against take of the species both within and 
outside of the designated areas, and the fact that critical habitat 
provides no incremental restrictions, we do not anticipate that 
property values will be affected by the critical habitat designation. 
While real estate market values may temporarily decline following 
designation, due to the perception that critical habitat designation 
may impose additional regulatory burdens on land use, we expect any 
such impacts to be short term. Additionally, critical habitat 
designation does not preclude development of HCPs and issuance of 
incidental take permits. Landowners in areas that are included in the 
designated critical habitat will continue to have the opportunity to 
utilize their property in ways consistent with the survival of bighorn 


    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 and Department of 
Commerce policy, we requested information from, and coordinated 
development of this critical habitat proposal with, appropriate State 
resource agencies in California, as well as during the listing process. 
The designation of critical habitat for Peninsular bighorn sheep 
imposes no additional restrictions to those currently in place, and, 
therefore, has little incremental impact on State and local governments 
and their activities. The designation may have some benefit to these 
governments in that the areas essential to the conservation of the 
species are more clearly defined, and the primary constituent elements 
of the habitat necessary to the survival of the species are 
specifically identified. While making this 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 
consultations to occur) and may lead to quicker recovery of the 

Civil Justice Reform

    In accordance with Executive Order 12988, the Office of the 
Solicitor has determined that the rule does not unduly burden the 
judicial system and meets the requirements of sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) 
of the Order. We designate critical habitat in accordance with the 
provisions of the Act and held public hearings on the proposed 
designation during the comment period. 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 Peninsular bighorn sheep.

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

    This rule does not contain any information collection requirements 
for which Office of Management and Budget approval under the Paperwork 
Reduction Act is required.

National Environmental Policy Act

    We have determined that we do not need to prepare an Environmental 
Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement as defined by the

[[Page 8667]]

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 reasons for this 
determination in the Federal Register on October 25, 1983 (48 FR 

Government-to-Government Relationship With Tribes

    We have determined that there are Tribal Trust lands essential for 
the conservation of the Peninsular bighorn sheep because they contain 
the primary constituent elements that support Peninsular bighorn sheep 
populations, and provide essential linkages between ewe groups in the 
Peninsular Ranges metapopulation. Therefore, we are designating 
critical habitat for bighorn sheep on Trust lands of the Morongo Band 
of Mission Indians, Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, and Torres-
Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indians. In the future, we may revise this 
designation to exclude some or all of these lands from critical habitat 
upon a determination that the benefits of excluding them outweighs the 
benefits of designating these areas as critical habitat, as provided 
under section 4(b)(2) of the Act.
    Lands within the Agua Caliente Reservation necessary to the 
survival and recovery of Peninsular bighorn sheep occur within the 
current home range of the San Jacinto Mountains ewe group and provide a 
dispersal linkage to the northern Santa Rosa Mountains ewe group. The 
Tribe and Service are coordinating on the development of a habitat 
management plan that would protect Peninsular bighorn sheep and more 
clearly define how Indian lands would contribute to regional 
conservation planning and the overall recovery program for Peninsular 
bighorn sheep. We understand that this management plan will be proposed 
as an HCP and will be considered in any future critical habitat 
    On the Torres-Martinez Reservation, the Tribe and Service have 
discussed coordinating on a habitat analysis and management plan, if 
appropriate, that would be considered in any future revisions to 
critical habitat.
    On the Morongo Reservation, the Tribe and Service are working on 
the development of an agreement that would describe coordination 
protocols for land use management decisions that would be considered in 
any future revisions to critical habitat.

References Cited

    A complete list of all references cited in this final rule is 
available upon request from the Carlsbad Fish and Wildlife Office (see 
ADDRESSES section).
    Author: The primary authors of this notice are the Carlsbad Fish 
and Wildlife Office staff (see ADDRESSES section).

List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 17

    Endangered and threatened species, Exports, Imports, Reporting and 
record keeping requirements, Transportation.

Regulation Promulgation

    Accordingly, we 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. 17.11(h) revise the entry for ``Sheep, bighorn'' under 
``MAMMALS'' to read as follows:

Sec. 17.11  Endangered and threatened wildlife.

* * * * *
    (h) * * *

                        Species                                                    Vertebrate
--------------------------------------------------------                        population where                                  Critical     Special
                                                            Historic range       endangered or         Status      When listed    habitat       rules
           Common name                Scientific name                              threatened

                   *                  *                  *                  *                  *                  *                  *

                   *                  *                  *                  *                  *                  *                  *
    Sheep, bighorn...............  Ovis canadensis.....  U.S.A. (western      U.S.A. (CA)          E                       634     17.95(a)           NA
                                                          conterminous         Peninsular Ranges.
                                                          States), Canada
                                                          Mexico (northern).

                   *                  *                  *                  *                  *                  *                  *

    3. In Sec. 17.95 add critical habitat for the bighorn sheep 
(Peninsular Ranges) (Ovis canadensis) under paragraph (a) in the same 
alphabetical order as this species occurs in Sec. 17.11(h), to read as 

Sec. 17.95  Critical habitat--fish and wildlife.

* * * * *
    (a) Mammals.

* * *
Bighorn Sheep (Peninsular Ranges) (Ovis canadensis)
    1. The following map shows the general location of three contiguous 
designated critical habitat units for the Peninsular bighorn sheep in 
Riverside, San Diego, and Imperial counties, California, respectively.

    Note: Map follows:


[[Page 8668]]



[[Page 8669]]

    2. Within these areas, the primary constituent elements for 
Peninsular bighorn sheep are those habitat components that are 
essential for the primary biological needs of feeding, resting, 
reproduction and population recruitment, dispersal, connectivity 
between ewe groups, and isolation from detrimental human disturbance. 
The principal biological and physical constituent elements that are 
essential to the conservation of Peninsular bighorn sheep include: 
space for the normal behavior of groups and individuals; protection 
from disturbance; availability of the various native desert plant 
communities found on different topographic slopes, aspects, and 
landforms, such as steep slopes, rolling foothills, alluvial fans, and 
canyon bottoms; a range of habitats that provide forage, especially 
during periods of drought; steep, remote habitat for lambing, rearing 
of young, and escape from disturbance and/or predation; water sources; 
suitable linkages allowing individual bighorn to move freely between 
ewe groups and maintain connections between subpopulations.
    3. Towns and similar developed lands, which do not provide primary 
constituent elements, are not critical habitat. Road and railroad 
rights-of-way, flood control facilities, or other facilities that must 
be traversed by bighorn sheep to maintain connectivity between 
subpopulations, or otherwise may provide food, water, or cover for 
Peninsular bighorn sheep, are considered to support primary constituent 
elements, and therefore are included as critical habitat.
    Critical Habitat Unit 1: Riverside County, California. From USGS 
1:100,000 quadrangle maps Borrego Valley (1982), and Palm Springs 
(1982), California, beginning at the Riverside-San Diego County line at 
Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) Zone 11, North American Datum of 
1927 (NAD27) X-coordinate 544400, land bounded by the following UTM 
NAD27 coordinates (X, Y): 544400, 3698700; 544500, 3698700; 544500, 
3699200; 544600, 3699200; 544600, 3699600; 544700, 3699600; 544700, 
3700200; 544600, 3700200; 544600, 3700300; 544500, 3700300; 544500, 
3700400; 544300, 3700400; 544300, 3700500; 544200, 3700500; 544200, 
3700600; 544100, 3700600; 544100, 3700700; 544000, 3700700; 544000, 
3700800; 543900, 3700800; 543900, 3700900; 543800, 3700900; 543800, 
3701100; 543700, 3701100; 543700, 3701200; 543600, 3701200; 543600, 
3701500; 543500, 3701500; 543500, 3702200; 543600, 3702200; 543600, 
3702400; 543700, 3702400; 543700, 3702500; 543800, 3702500; 543800, 
3702600; 543900, 3702600; 543900, 3702700; 544100, 3702700; 544100, 
3702800; 544500, 3702800; 544500, 3702900; 544700, 3702900; 544700, 
3703000; 544900, 3703000; 544900, 3703100; 545600, 3703100; 545600, 
3703200; 547200, 3703200; 547200, 3703300; 547800, 3703300; 547800, 
3703200; 548100, 3703200; 548100, 3703100; 548300, 3703100; 548300, 
3703000; 548600, 3703000; 548600, 3702900; 549700, 3702900; 549700, 
3703000; 550400, 3703000; 550400, 3703100; 551300, 3703100; 551300, 
3703200; 552800, 3703200; 552800, 3703100; 553200, 3703100; 553200, 
3703000; 553600, 3703000; 553600, 3702900; 553800, 3702900; 553800, 
3702800; 554500, 3702800; 554500, 3702900; 554600, 3702900; 554600, 
3703100; 554700, 3703100; 554700, 3703200; 554800, 3703200; 554800, 
3703300; 554900, 3703300; 554900, 3703400; 555000, 3703400; 555000, 
3703500; 555100, 3703500; 555100, 3703600; 555200, 3703600; 555200, 
3703700; 555300, 3703700; 555300, 3703800; 555400, 3703800; 555400, 
3703900; 555500, 3703900; 555500, 3704000; 555600, 3704000; 555600, 
3704100; 555700, 3704100; 555700, 3704200; 555800, 3704200; 555800, 
3704300; 555900, 3704300; 555900, 3704500; 556000, 3704500; 556000, 
3704600; 556100, 3704600; 556100, 3704700; 556200, 3704700; 556200, 
3704800; 556300, 3704800; 556300, 3704900; 556400, 3704900; 556400, 
3705000; 556500, 3705000; 556500, 3705100; 556600, 3705100; 556600, 
3705200; 556700, 3705200; 556700, 3705300; 556800, 3705300; 556800, 
3705400; 556900, 3705400; 556900, 3705500; 557000, 3705500; 557000, 
3705600; 557100, 3705600; 557100, 3705800; 557200, 3705800; 557200, 
3706000; 557300, 3706000; 557300, 3706100; 557400, 3706100; 557400, 
3706200; 557500, 3706200; 557500, 3706300; 557900, 3706300; 557900, 
3706400; 558100, 3706400; 558100, 3706300; 558400, 3706300; 558400, 
3706200; 558600, 3706200; 558600, 3706100; 559200, 3706100; 559200, 
3706000; 559600, 3706000; 559600, 3705900; 560000, 3705900; 560000, 
3705800; 560200, 3705800; 560200, 3705700; 560300, 3705700; 560300, 
3705600; 560400, 3705600; 560400, 3705500; 560500, 3705500; 560500, 
3705400; 560900, 3705400; 560900, 3705300; 561100, 3705300; 561100, 
3705600; 560900, 3705600; 560900, 3705700; 560800, 3705700; 560800, 
3705900; 560700, 3705900; 560700, 3706500; 560600, 3706500; 560600, 
3706900; 560500, 3706900; 560500, 3707000; 560600, 3707000; 560600, 
3707500; 560700, 3707500; 560700, 3707600; 560800, 3707600; 560800, 
3707800; 561000, 3707800; 561000, 3707900; 561100, 3707900; 561100, 
3708000; 561200, 3708000; 561200, 3708200; 561300, 3708200; 561300, 
3708400; 561400, 3708400; 561400, 3708600; 561600, 3708600; 561600, 
3708700; 561800, 3708700; 561800, 3708800; 561900, 3708800; 561900, 
3708900; 562000, 3708900; 562000, 3709000; 562200, 3709000; 562200, 
3709100; 562400, 3709100; 562400, 3709200; 562300, 3709200; 562300, 
3709300; 562200, 3709300; 562200, 3709400; 562100, 3709400; 562100, 
3709500; 562000, 3709500; 562000, 3709600; 561900, 3709600; 561900, 
3709700; 561800, 3709700; 561800, 3709800; 561700, 3709800; 561700, 
3710000; 561600, 3710000; 561600, 3710600; 561700, 3710600; 561700, 
3710900; 561800, 3710900; 561800, 3711700; 561900, 3711700; 561900, 
3711900; 562000, 3711900; 562000, 3712000; 562100, 3712000; 562100, 
3712300; 562000, 3712300; 562000, 3712500; 561900, 3712500; 561900, 
3712800; 561800, 3712800; 561800, 3713800; 561900, 3713800; 561900, 
3714000; 562000, 3714000; 562000, 3714100; 561800, 3714100; 561800, 
3714200; 561000, 3714200; 561000, 3714300; 560900, 3714300; 560900, 
3714400; 560600, 3714400; 560600, 3714500; 560500, 3714500; 560500, 
3714600; 560400, 3714600; 560400, 3714700; 560300, 3714700; 560300, 
3714800; 560200, 3714800; 560200, 3714900; 560100, 3714900; 560100, 
3715000; 560000, 3715000; 560000, 3715100; 559900, 3715100; 559900, 
3715300; 559800, 3715300; 559800, 3715400; 559600, 3715400; 559600, 
3715500; 559500, 3715500; 559500, 3715600; 559300, 3715600; 559300, 
3715800; 559200, 3715800; 559200, 3715900; 559100, 3715900; 559100, 
3716000; 558900, 3716000; 558900, 3716100; 558800, 3716100; 558800, 
3716200; 558600, 3716200; 558600, 3716300; 558500, 3716300; 558500, 
3716400; 558400, 3716400; 558400, 3716600; 557500, 3716600; 557500, 
3716700; 557400, 3716700; 557400, 3716600; 557200, 3716600; 557200, 
3716500; 557100, 3716500; 557100, 3716400; 556900, 3716400; 556900, 
3716300; 556800, 3716300; 556800, 3716200; 556600, 3716200; 556600, 
3716100; 555800, 3716100; 555800, 3716000; 555700, 3716000; 555700, 
3715800; 555600, 3715800; 555600, 3715700; 555500, 3715700; 555500, 
3715600; 555400, 3715600; 555400, 3715500; 555300, 3715500; 555300, 

[[Page 8670]]

555200, 3715400; 555200, 3715300; 555100, 3715300; 555100, 3715200; 
554300, 3715200; 554300, 3715100; 554000, 3715100; 554000, 3715200; 
553600, 3715200; 553600, 3715100; 553500, 3715100; 553500, 3715000; 
553300, 3715000; 553300, 3714900; 553100, 3714900; 553100, 3714800; 
552300, 3714800; 552300, 3714900; 552200, 3714900; 552200, 3715000; 
552100, 3715000; 552100, 3715100; 552000, 3715100; 552000, 3715200; 
551900, 3715200; 551900, 3715800; 551800, 3715800; 551800, 3716100; 
551900, 3716100; 551900, 3716900; 552000, 3716900; 552000, 3717000; 
552100, 3717000; 552100, 3717400; 552200, 3717400; 552200, 3717500; 
552600, 3717500; 552600, 3717600; 552700, 3717600; 552700, 3717700; 
552800, 3717700; 552800, 3718500; 552900, 3718500; 552900, 3718700; 
552800, 3718700; 552800, 3718800; 552700, 3718800; 552700, 3718900; 
552500, 3718900; 552500, 3719100; 552200, 3719100; 552200, 3719200; 
550800, 3719200; 550800, 3719300; 550500, 3719300; 550500, 3719400; 
550400, 3719400; 550400, 3719500; 550300, 3719500; 550300, 3719600; 
550200, 3719600; 550200, 3719800; 550100, 3719800; 550100, 3720000; 
550000, 3720000; 550000, 3720500; 550100, 3720500; 550100, 3720700; 
550200, 3720700; 550200, 3720900; 550300, 3720900; 550300, 3721100; 
550200, 3721100; 550200, 3721200; 550100, 3721200; 550100, 3721300; 
550000, 3721300; 550000, 3721400; 549900, 3721400; 549900, 3721500; 
549800, 3721500; 549800, 3721600; 549700, 3721600; 549700, 3721700; 
549600, 3721700; 549600, 3721800; 549500, 3721800; 549500, 3722000; 
549400, 3722000; 549400, 3722100; 549300, 3722100; 549300, 3722200; 
549200, 3722200; 549200, 3722300; 549100, 3722300; 549100, 3722400; 
549000, 3722400; 549000, 3722500; 548900, 3722500; 548900, 3722600; 
548800, 3722600; 548800, 3722700; 548700, 3722700; 548700, 3722600; 
548500, 3722600; 548500, 3722500; 548100, 3722500; 548100, 3722400; 
546900, 3722400; 546900, 3722300; 546700, 3722300; 546700, 3721700; 
546600, 3721700; 546600, 3721600; 546500, 3721600; 546500, 3721400; 
546400, 3721400; 546400, 3721200; 546300, 3721200; 546300, 3721100; 
546200, 3721100; 546200, 3721000; 546000, 3721000; 546000, 3720900; 
545800, 3720900; 545800, 3720800; 545300, 3720800; 545300, 3720600; 
544400, 3720600; 544400, 3720700; 544300, 3720700; 544300, 3720800; 
544100, 3720800; 544100, 3721000; 544000, 3721000; 544000, 3721100; 
543900, 3721100; 543900, 3721300; 543800, 3721300; 543800, 3721500; 
543700, 3721500; 543700, 3721600; 543600, 3721600; 543600, 3721800; 
543500, 3721800; 543500, 3721900; 543400, 3721900; 543400, 3722100; 
543300, 3722100; 543300, 3722300; 543200, 3722300; 543200, 3722500; 
543100, 3722500; 543100, 3722700; 543000, 3722700; 543000, 3723100; 
542900, 3723100; 542900, 3723700; 542800, 3723700; 542800, 3724200; 
542700, 3724200; 542700, 3724800; 542600, 3724800; 542600, 3725000; 
542500, 3725000; 542500, 3725200; 542400, 3725200; 542400, 3725400; 
542300, 3725400; 542300, 3725500; 542200, 3725500; 542200, 3726500; 
542100, 3726500; 542100, 3726700; 542000, 3726700; 542000, 3726600; 
541300, 3726600; 541300, 3726700; 541100, 3726700; 541100, 3726800; 
541000, 3726800; 541000, 3726900; 540900, 3726900; 540900, 3727000; 
540800, 3727000; 540800, 3727300; 540700, 3727300; 540700, 3727600; 
540800, 3727600; 540800, 3728200; 540900, 3728200; 540900, 3728500; 
541000, 3728500; 541000, 3728700; 541100, 3728700; 541100, 3728900; 
541200, 3728900; 541200, 3729000; 541300, 3729000; 541300, 3729300; 
541200, 3729300; 541200, 3729800; 540100, 3729800; 540100, 3729900; 
539900, 3729900; 539900, 3730000; 539800, 3730000; 539800, 3730100; 
539700, 3730100; 539700, 3730200; 539600, 3730200; 539600, 3730400; 
539400, 3730400; 539400, 3730500; 539300, 3730500; 539300, 3730600; 
539200, 3730600; 539200, 3730700; 539100, 3730700; 539100, 3730800; 
539000, 3730800; 539000, 3730900; 538900, 3730900; 538900, 3731000; 
538800, 3731000; 538800, 3731200; 538600, 3731200; 538600, 3731300; 
538500, 3731300; 538500, 3731400; 538400, 3731400; 538400, 3731500; 
538300, 3731500; 538300, 3731600; 538200, 3731600; 538200, 3732000; 
538000, 3732000; 538000, 3732100; 537900, 3732100; 537900, 3732200; 
537800, 3732200; 537800, 3732300; 537600, 3732300; 537600, 3732400; 
537500, 3732400; 537500, 3732500; 537400, 3732500; 537400, 3732700; 
537300, 3732700; 537300, 3734000; 537200, 3734000; 537200, 3736200; 
537300, 3736200; 537300, 3736400; 537400, 3736400; 537400, 3736600; 
537500, 3736600; 537500, 3736700; 537600, 3736700; 537600, 3736800; 
537700, 3736800; 537700, 3736900; 537800, 3736900; 537800, 3737000; 
537700, 3737000; 537700, 3737100; 537500, 3737100; 537500, 3737200; 
537400, 3737200; 537400, 3737300; 537300, 3737300; 537300, 3737400; 
537200, 3737400; 537200, 3737500; 537100, 3737500; 537100, 3737700; 
537000, 3737700; 537000, 3737800; 536900, 3737800; 536900, 3738100; 
536800, 3738100; 536800, 3738700; 536700, 3738700; 536700, 3738800; 
536600, 3738800; 536600, 3738900; 536500, 3738900; 536500, 3739100; 
536400, 3739100; 536400, 3740000; 536500, 3740000; 536500, 3740200; 
536600, 3740200; 536600, 3740400; 536700, 3740400; 536700, 3740600; 
536600, 3740600; 536600, 3740800; 536500, 3740800; 536500, 3741100; 
536400, 3741100; 536400, 3741600; 535700, 3741600; 535700, 3741700; 
534800, 3741700; 534800, 3741800; 534700, 3741800; 534700, 3741900; 
534600, 3741900; 534600, 3742000; 534500, 3742000; 534500, 3742200; 
534400, 3742200; 534400, 3742300; 534300, 3742300; 534300, 3742500; 
534200, 3742500; 534200, 3742600; 534100, 3742600; 534100, 3742700; 
534000, 3742700; 534000, 3742800; 533900, 3742800; 533900, 3742900; 
533800, 3742900; 533800, 3743000; 533700, 3743000; 533700, 3743100; 
533600, 3743100; 533600, 3743200; 533500, 3743200; 533500, 3743300; 
533400, 3743300; 533400, 3743500; 533300, 3743500; 533300, 3744100; 
533200, 3744100; 533200, 3744300; 533300, 3744300; 533300, 3744500; 
533400, 3744500; 533400, 3744600; 533200, 3744600; 533200, 3744700; 
533000, 3744700; 533000, 3744800; 532700, 3744800; 532700, 3744900; 
532500, 3744900; 532500, 3745000; 532300, 3745000; 532300, 3745100; 
532200, 3745100; 532200, 3745200; 532100, 3745200; 532100, 3745100; 
532000, 3745100; 532000, 3744900; 531900, 3744900; 531900, 3744800; 
531700, 3744800; 531700, 3744700; 531400, 3744700; 531400, 3744600; 
529700, 3744600; 529700, 3744700; 529500, 3744700; 529500, 3744800; 
529400, 3744800; 529400, 3744900; 529300, 3744900; 529300, 3745100; 
529200, 3745100; 529200, 3745200; 529100, 3745200; 529100, 3745300; 
529000, 3745300; 529000, 3745400; 528900, 3745400; 528900, 3745500; 
528500, 3745500; 528500, 3745600; 528100, 3745600; 528100, 3745700; 
528000, 3745700; 528000, 3745800; 527900, 3745800; 527900, 3746000; 
527800, 3746000; 527800, 3746200; 527700, 3746200; 527700, 3747200; 
527600, 3747200; 527600, 3747300; 527500, 3747300; 527500, 3747500; 
526400, 3747500; 526400, 3747600; 526100, 3747600; 526100, 3747700; 
526000, 3747700; 526000, 3747800; 525900, 3747800; 525900, 3747900; 
525800, 3747900; 525800, 3748000; 525700, 3748000; 525700, 3748100;

[[Page 8671]]

525600, 3748100; 525600, 3748300; 525500, 3748300; 525500, 3748700; 
524900, 3748700; 524900, 3748400; 524800, 3748400; 524800, 3748200; 
524700, 3748200; 524700, 3748100; 524600, 3748100; 524600, 3748000; 
524400, 3748000; 524400, 3747900; 523200, 3747900; 523200, 3748000; 
522700, 3748000; 522700, 3748100; 522500, 3748100; 522500, 3748200; 
522300, 3748200; 522300, 3748300; 522200, 3748300; 522200, 3748400; 
522100, 3748400; 522100, 3748500; 522000, 3748500; 522000, 3749100; 
522100, 3749100; 522100, 3749300; 522800, 3749300; 522800, 3750100; 
522900, 3750100; 522900, 3750300; 523000, 3750300; 523000, 3750400; 
523100, 3750400; 523100, 3750500; 523200, 3750500; 523200, 3750600; 
523300, 3750600; 523300, 3750700; 523400, 3750700; 523400, 3750900; 
523500, 3750900; 523500, 3751100; 523600, 3751100; 523600, 3751200; 
524500, 3751200; 524500, 3751600; 524700, 3751600; 524700, 3751700; 
524800, 3751700; 524800, 3751800; 524900, 3751800; 524900, 3751900; 
525000, 3751900; 525000, 3752500; 525400, 3752500; 525400, 3752400; 
525600, 3752400; 525600, 3752300; 526200, 3752300; 526200, 3752200; 
526400, 3752200; 526400, 3752100; 527100, 3752100; 527100, 3752200; 
527300, 3752200; 527300, 3752300; 527500, 3752300; 527500, 3752400; 
527600, 3752400; 527600, 3752500; 527700, 3752500; 527700, 3752600; 
527800, 3752600; 527800, 3752800; 527900, 3752800; 527900, 3753100; 
528400, 3753100; 528400, 3753000; 528500, 3753000; 528500, 3752900; 
528600, 3752900; 528600, 3752800; 528700, 3752800; 528700, 3752600; 
528800, 3752600; 528800, 3752500; 528900, 3752500; 528900, 3752400; 
529000, 3752400; 529000, 3752200; 529100, 3752200; 529100, 3752100; 
529200, 3752100; 529200, 3752000; 529300, 3752000; 529300, 3751900; 
529500, 3751900; 529500, 3751800; 529600, 3751800; 529600, 3751500; 
529700, 3751500; 529700, 3751200; 529800, 3751200; 529800, 3750200; 
529900, 3750200; 529900, 3750100; 530000, 3750100; 530000, 3750200; 
530100, 3750200; 530100, 3750300; 530200, 3750300; 530200, 3750400; 
530300, 3750400; 530300, 3750500; 530400, 3750500; 530400, 3750600; 
530600, 3750600; 530600, 3750700; 531100, 3750700; 531100, 3750800; 
531200, 3750800; 531200, 3750900; 532300, 3750900; 532300, 3750800; 
532600, 3750800; 532600, 3750700; 532800, 3750700; 532800, 3750600; 
533000, 3750600; 533000, 3750500; 533300, 3750500; 533300, 3750600; 
533600, 3750600; 533600, 3750500; 533900, 3750500; 533900, 3750600; 
534200, 3750600; 534200, 3750700; 534300, 3750700; 534300, 3750800; 
534700, 3750800; 534700, 3750900; 534900, 3750900; 534900, 3750800; 
535100, 3750800; 535100, 3750000; 535200, 3750000; 535200, 3749800; 
535400, 3749800; 535400, 3749700; 535600, 3749700; 535600, 3749600; 
535700, 3749600; 535700, 3748700; 536000, 3748700; 536000, 3748800; 
536200, 3748800; 536200, 3748900; 536300, 3748900; 536300, 3749100; 
536600, 3749100; 536600, 3749200; 536800, 3749200; 536800, 3749300; 
536900, 3749300; 536900, 3749400; 537100, 3749400; 537100, 3749300; 
537200, 3749300; 537200, 3749200; 537400, 3749200; 537400, 3749100; 
537500, 3749100; 537500, 3749000; 537700, 3749000; 537700, 3748900; 
537800, 3748900; 537800, 3748800; 538000, 3748800; 538000, 3748700; 
538100, 3748700; 538100, 3748600; 538200, 3748600; 538200, 3748500; 
538300, 3748500; 538300, 3748400; 538400, 3748400; 538400, 3748300; 
538500, 3748300; 538500, 3748200; 538700, 3748200; 538700, 3748100; 
538800, 3748100; 538800, 3748000; 538900, 3748000; 538900, 3747900; 
539000, 3747900; 539000, 3747800; 539100, 3747800; 539100, 3747700; 
539200, 3747700; 539200, 3747600; 539300, 3747600; 539300, 3747500; 
539500, 3747500; 539500, 3747400; 539600, 3747400; 539600, 3747300; 
539700, 3747300; 539700, 3747200; 540000, 3747200; 540000, 3747100; 
540100, 3747100; 540100, 3746800; 540000, 3746800; 540000, 3746000; 
540100, 3746000; 540100, 3745900; 540200, 3745900; 540200, 3745800; 
540600, 3745800; 540600, 3745100; 540500, 3745100; 540500, 3744900; 
540900, 3744900; 540900, 3744400; 540800, 3744400; 540800, 3744300; 
540600, 3744300; 540600, 3744200; 540500, 3744200; 540500, 3744100; 
540600, 3744100; 540600, 3743900; 540700, 3743900; 540700, 3743700; 
540800, 3743700; 540800, 3743500; 540900, 3743500; 540900, 3743400; 
541300, 3743400; 541300, 3743200; 541400, 3743200; 541400, 3743100; 
541500, 3743100; 541500, 3743000; 541700, 3743000; 541700, 3742500; 
541400, 3742500; 541400, 3741700; 541300, 3741700; 541300, 3741600; 
541100, 3741600; 541100, 3741300; 541200, 3741300; 541200, 3741100; 
541600, 3741100; 541600, 3740600; 541700, 3740600; 541700, 3740400; 
542000, 3740400; 542000, 3740000; 541700, 3740000; 541700, 3739900; 
541600, 3739900; 541600, 3739500; 541700, 3739500; 541700, 3739400; 
541800, 3739400; 541800, 3739300; 541700, 3739300; 541700, 3738900; 
542000, 3738900; 542000, 3738600; 541900, 3738600; 541900, 3738400; 
542000, 3738400; 542000, 3738100; 541900, 3738100; 541900, 3737800; 
541800, 3737800; 541800, 3736900; 542000, 3736900; 542000, 3736100; 
542300, 3736100; 542300, 3736000; 543100, 3736000; 543100, 3735800; 
543300, 3735800; 543300, 3736000; 543600, 3736000; 543600, 3736100; 
543700, 3736100; then southwestward along Bogert Trail and north on 
Andreas Hills Drive to X-coordinate 544000; then north and eastward 
along UTM NAD27 coordinates (X, Y) 544000, 3736300; 543900, 3736300; 
543900, 3736600; 544000, 3736600; 544000, 3737000; 543600, 3737000; 
543600, 3737200; 543400, 3737200; 543400, 3737400; 543500, 3737400; 
543500, 3737500; 543600, 3737500; 543600, 3737600; 543700, 3737600; 
543700, 3737800; 543800, 3737800; 543800, 3738100; 543900, 3738100; 
543900, 3738200; 544000, 3738200; 544000, 3738300; 544100, 3738300; 
544100, 3738600; 544200, 3738600; 544200, 3738700; 544300, 3738700; 
544300, 3738800; 544400, 3738800; 544400, 3738900; 544700, 3738900; 
544700, 3738800; 544800, 3738800; 544800, 3738700; 545000, 3738700; 
545000, 3738600; 545200, 3738600; 545200, 3738500; 545300, 3738500; 
545300, 3738800; 545400, 3738800; 545400, 3739200; 545800, 3739200; 
545800, 3739000; 545900, 3739000; 545900, 3738900; 546100, 3738900; 
546100, 3739000; 546300, 3739000; 546300, 3738900; 546500, 3738900; 
546500, 3739000; 547100, 3739000; 547100, 3738900; 547200, 3738900; 
547200, 3738800; 547300, 3738800; 547300, 3739000; 547600, 3739000; 
547600, 3738800; 547700, 3738800; 547700, 3738700; 547800, 3738700; 
547800, 3738600; 547900, 3738600; 547900, 3738300; 548100, 3738300; 
548100, 3738200; 548200, 3738200; 548200, 3738100; 548400, 3738100; 
548400, 3738000; 548500, 3738000; 548500, 3738100; 548700, 3738100; 
548700, 3738000; 549000, 3738000; to X-coordinate 549000 at the levee; 
then southward along the top of the levee to Y-coordinate 3735800; then 
eastward along UTM NAD27 coordinates (X, Y) 548200, 3735800; 548200, 
3735500; 548300, 3735500; 548300, 3735400; 548500, 3735400; 548500, 
3735500; 548600, 3735500; 548600, 3735600; 548700, 3735600; 548700, 
3735700; 549000, 3735700; 549000, 3735800; 549100, 3735800; 549100, 
3735900; 549400, 3735900; 549400, 3736100; 549500, 3736100; 549500, 

[[Page 8672]]

549800, 3736300; 549800, 3735800; 549900, 3735800; 549900, 3735400; 
550000, 3735400; 550000, 3735600; 550100, 3735600; 550100, 3735700; 
550200, 3735700; 550200, 3735800; 550300, 3735800; 550300, 3735900; 
550400, 3735900; 550400, 3736000; 550500, 3736000; 550500, 3736100; 
550600, 3736100; 550600, 3736200; 551400, 3736200; 551400, 3736100; to 
Y-coordinate 3736100 at the levee; then southward along the top of the 
levee to Y-coordinate 3735700; then southwestward along UTM NAD27 
coordinates (X, Y) 551300, 3735700; 551300, 3735500; 551600, 3735500; 
551600, 3735400; 551700, 3735400; 551700, 3734200; 552100, 3734200; 
552100, 3734300; 552200, 3734300; 552200, 3734500; 552500, 3734500; 
552500, 3734400; 552700, 3734400; 552700, 3734300; 552800, 3734300; 
552800, 3734100; 553000, 3734100; 553000, 3734400; 553400, 3734400; 
553400, 3734200; 553500, 3734200; 553500, 3734100; 553600, 3734100; 
553600, 3734000; 553700, 3734000; then south to the levee at X-
coordinate 553700; then south along the top of the levee to X-
coordinate 553100; then east and south along UTM NAD27 coordinates (X, 
Y) 553100, 3732300; 553200, 3732300; 553200, 3732200; 553300, 3732200; 
553300, 3732400; 553500, 3732400; 553500, 3732300; 554000, 3732300; 
554000, 3732200; 554100, 3732200; 554100, 3732400; 554200, 3732400; 
554200, 3732600; 554400, 3732600; 554400, 3732700; 554800, 3732700; 
554800, 3732500; 555100, 3732500; 555100, 3732100; 554900, 3732100; 
554900, 3732000; 555200, 3732000; 555200, 3731700; 555100, 3731700; 
555100, 3731500; 555200, 3731500; 555200, 3731400; 555400, 3731400; 
555400, 3731300; then east to the levee at Y-coordinate 3731300; then 
southward along the top of the levee to X-coordinate 555600; then 
southward along UTM NAD27 coordinates (X, Y) 555600, 3730500; 555500, 
3730500; 555500, 3730200; 555700, 3730200; then south along X-
coordinate 3730200 to the levee; then southwest along the top of the 
levee to Y-coordinate 3728400; then west, south and eastward along UTM 
NAD27 coordinates (X, Y) 555300, 3728400; 555300, 3728300; 554900, 
3728300; 554900, 3728400; 554500, 3728400; 554500, 3728500; 554400, 
3728500; 554400, 3728600; 554200, 3728600; 554200, 3728800; 554100, 
3728800; 554100, 3728700; 553800, 3728700; 553800, 3728600; 553600, 
3728600; 553600, 3726400; 553900, 3726400; 553900, 3726300; 554000, 
3726300; 554000, 3726200; 554200, 3726200; 554200, 3726000; 554600, 
3726000; 554600, 3725800; 554700, 3725800; 554700, 3725700; 554800, 
3725700; 554800, 3725600; 554900, 3725600; 554900, 3726000; 555000, 
3726000; 555000, 3726100; 555800, 3726100; 555800, 3726300; 555700, 
3726300; 555700, 3726500; 556600, 3726500; 556600, 3726100; 556700, 
3726100; 556700, 3727000; 556600, 3727000; 556600, 3727100; 556500, 
3727100; 556500, 3727500; 557200, 3727500; 557200, 3727400; 557300, 
3727400; 557300, 3727200; 557500, 3727200; 557500, 3727100; 557800, 
3727100; 557800, 3727000; 557900, 3727000; 557900, 3726800; 558000, 
3726800; 558000, 3726600; 558200, 3726600; 558200, 3726500; 558800, 
3726500; 558800, 3726600; 558900, 3726600; 558900, 3727300; 559100, 
3727300; 559100, 3727400; 559300, 3727400; 559300, 3727700; 559400, 
3727700; 559400, 3727900; 559500, 3727900; 559500, 3728100; 559300, 
3728100; 559300, 3727900; 559000, 3727900; 559000, 3728100; 558900, 
3728100; 558900, 3728200; 558800, 3728200; 558800, 3728300; 558700, 
3728300; 558700, 3728500; 558600, 3728500; 558600, 3728700; 558500, 
3728700; 558500, 3728900; 558400, 3728900; 558400, 3729200; 558500, 
3729200; 558500, 3729300; 558600, 3729300; 558600, 3729400; 559000, 
3729400; 559000, 3729500; 559400, 3729500; 559400, 3729600; 559700, 
3729600; 559700, 3729500; 560000, 3729500; 560000, 3729400; 560200, 
3729400; 560200, 3729200; 560300, 3729200; 560300, 3729700; 560400, 
3729700; 560400, 3729900; 560300, 3729900; 560300, 3730100; 560500, 
3730100; 560500, 3730000; 560600, 3730000; 560600, 3729800; 560800, 
3729800; 560800, 3729700; 560900, 3729700; 560900, 3729500; 561100, 
3729500; 561100, 3729400; 561200, 3729400; 561200, 3729300; then east 
to Eldorado Drive at Y-coordinate 3729300; then northward along 
Eldorado Drive to Y-coordinate 3730000; then east to UTM NAD27 
coordinate 561800, 3730000; then north to Eldorado Drive at X-
coordinate 561800; then eastward along Eldorado Drive past X-coordinate 
562000 and northward back to X-coordinate 562000; then eastward and 
southward along UTM NAD27 coordinates (X, Y) 562000, 3730500; 562100, 
3730500; 562100, 3730400; 562500, 3730400; 562500, 3730200; 562600, 
3730200; 562600, 3730100; 562700, 3730100; 562700, 3730200; 562800, 
3730200; 562800, 3730400; 563000, 3730400; 563000, 3730300; 563100, 
3730300; 563100, 3730200; 563200, 3730200; 563200, 3730400; 563300, 
3730400; 563300, 3730000; 563500, 3730000; 563500, 3730100; 563600, 
3730100; 563600, 3730200; 563700, 3730200; 563700, 3730300; 563800, 
3730300; 563800, 3730400; 564000, 3730400; 564000, 3730300; 564100, 
3730300; 564100, 3730200; 564200, 3730200; 564200, 3730000; 564100, 
3730000; 564100, 3729900; 564200, 3729900; 564200, 3729800; 564300, 
3729800; 564300, 3729600; 564500, 3729600; 564500, 3729700; 564700, 
3729700; 564700, 3729800; 564800, 3729800; 564800, 3730200; 565000, 
3730200; 565000, 3730500; 565200, 3730500; 565200, 3729700; 565300, 
3729700; 565300, 3729500; 565200, 3729500; 565200, 3729200; 565100, 
3729200; 565100, 3729100; 565200, 3729100; 565200, 3728900; 564900, 
3728900; 564900, 3729000; 564800, 3729000; 564800, 3729100; 564600, 
3729100; 564600, 3729000; 564400, 3729000; 564400, 3728900; 564500, 
3728900; 564500, 3728600; 564400, 3728600; 564400, 3728500; 563900, 
3728500; 563900, 3728400; 564000, 3728400; 564000, 3728100; 564200, 
3728100; 564200, 3727800; 563900, 3727800; 563900, 3727900; 563700, 
3727900; 563700, 3728000; 563600, 3728000; 563600, 3728200; 563500, 
3728200; 563500, 3728100; 563400, 3728100; 563400, 3728000; 563200, 
3728000; 563200, 3728300; 563100, 3728300; 563100, 3727700; 563200, 
3727700; 563200, 3727200; 563300, 3727200; 563300, 3726700; 563500, 
3726700; 563500, 3726600; 563700, 3726600; 563700, 3726300; 563400, 
3726300; 563400, 3726200; 563300, 3726200; 563300, 3726000; 563200, 
3726000; 563200, 3725800; 563100, 3725800; 563100, 3725700; then east 
to X-coordinate 563100 at the levee; then southward along the top of 
the levee past Y-coordinate 3723500 to X-coordinate 563300; then along 
UTM NAD27 coordinates (X, Y) 563300, 3723300; 563400, 3723300; 563400, 
3722500; 564200, 3722500; then north to Avenida Bermudas at X-
coordinate 564200; then northwest along Avenida Bermudas to Y-
coordinate 3724000; then north and eastward along UTM NAD27 coordinates 
(X, Y) 564700, 3724000; 564700, 3724100; 565100, 3724100; 565100, 
3724200; 565300, 3724200; 565300, 3724300; 565200, 3724300; 565200, 
3724500; 565300, 3724500; 565300, 3724900; 565200, 3724900; 565200, 
3725100; 565300, 3725100; 565300, 3725200; 565600, 3725200; 565600, 
3725100; 565900, 3725100; 565900, 3725300; 565800, 3725300; 565800, 
3725500; 565900, 3725500; 565900, 3725700; 565800, 3725700; 565800, 
3725900; 566000,

[[Page 8673]]

3725900; 566000, 3725800; 566200, 3725800; 566200, 3725500; 566400, 
3725500; 566400, 3725400; 566600, 3725400; 566600, 3725300; 566700, 
3725300; 566700, 3725200; 566600, 3725200; 566600, 3725000; 566800, 
3725000; 566800, 3724900; 567000, 3724900; 567000, 3724800; 567100, 
3724800; 567100, 3724700; then to a point 50 feet west of the Coachella 
Canal at Y-coordinate 3724700; then southward remaining 50 feet west of 
the Coachella Canal past Y-coordinate 3721800 to X-coordinate 567000; 
then southward along UTM NAD27 coordinates (X, Y) 567000, 3721600; 
567100, 3721600; 567100, 3721300; 567000, 3721300; 567000, 3720900; 
566400, 3720900; 566400, 3720100; 567400, 3720100; 567400, 3719300; 
568000, 3719300; 568000, 3717600; 568100, 3717600; 568100, 3717500; 
568300, 3717500; 568300, 3717400; 568500, 3717400; 568500, 3717300; 
568700, 3717300; 568700, 3717200; 568900, 3717200; 568900, 3717100; 
569100, 3717100; 569100, 3717000; 569300, 3717000; 569300, 3716900; 
569500, 3716900; 569500, 3716800; 569700, 3716800; 569700, 3716700; 
570200, 3716700; 570200, 3716600; 570400, 3716600; 570400, 3716500; 
570500, 3716500; 570500, 3716400; 570600, 3716400; 570600, 3716300; 
570700, 3716300; 570700, 3716100; 570800, 3716100; 570800, 3716000; 
571400, 3716000; 571400, 3715800; 571500, 3715800; 571500, 3715500; 
571600, 3715500; 571600, 3715300; 571700, 3715300; 571700, 3715200; 
572100, 3715200; 572100, 3715100; 572400, 3715100; 572400, 3714900; 
572500, 3714900; 572500, 3714800; 572800, 3714800; 572800, 3714400; 
573300, 3714400; 573300, 3712900; 574400, 3712900; 574400, 3712800; 
574500, 3712800; 574500, 3712500; 574600, 3712500; 574600, 3712400; 
574700, 3712400; 574700, 3711700; 574800, 3711700; 574800, 3711300; 
574700, 3711300; 574700, 3711100; 574800, 3711100; 574800, 3710900; 
574900, 3710900; 574900, 3710500; 575600, 3710500; 575600, 3710400; 
575800, 3710400; 575800, 3710300; 575900, 3710300; 575900, 3710200; 
576000, 3710200; 576000, 3710100; 576100, 3710100; 576100, 3709900; 
576200, 3709900; 576200, 3709800; 576300, 3709800; 576300, 3709600; 
576400, 3709600; 576400, 3708900; 576300, 3708900; 576300, 3708700; 
576200, 3708700; 576200, 3708600; 576100, 3708600; 576100, 3708500; 
576000, 3708500; 576000, 3708400; 575900, 3708400; 575900, 3708100; 
575300, 3708100; 575300, 3706600; 575400, 3706600; 575400, 3706700; 
576400, 3706700; 576400, 3706600; 576600, 3706600; 576600, 3706500; 
576800, 3706500; 576800, 3706400; 577000, 3706400; 577000, 3706300; 
577200, 3706300; 577200, 3706200; 577300, 3706200; 577300, 3706100; 
577400, 3706100; 577400, 3705800; 577500, 3705800; 577500, 3705500; 
577600, 3705500; 577600, 3705000; 577700, 3705000; 577700, 3704900; 
578000, 3704900; 578000, 3704800; 578100, 3704800; 578100, 3704700; 
578200, 3704700; 578200, 3704600; 578300, 3704600; 578300, 3704400; 
578400, 3704400; 578400, 3703100; 578300, 3703100; 578300, 3702800; 
578200, 3702800; 578200, 3702400; 578100, 3702400; 578100, 3702200; 
578000, 3702200; 578000, 3702100; 578700, 3702100; 578700, 3702000; 
578900, 3702000; 578900, 3701900; 579000, 3701900; 579000, 3701800; 
579100, 3701800; 579100, 3701700; 579200, 3701700; 579200, 3701300; 
579300, 3701300; 579300, 3701000; 579700, 3701000; 579700, 3700900; 
579800, 3700900; 579800, 3700700; 579900, 3700700; 579900, 3700000; 
580500, 3700000; 580500, 3699900; 580600, 3699900; 580600, 3699800; 
580700, 3699800; 580700, 3699700; 580800, 3699700; 580800, 3699600; 
580900, 3699600; 580900, 3698800; 580800, 3698800 to the Riverside-San 
Diego County line at X-coordinate 580800; then west along the Riverside 
County line to the point of beginning at X-coordinate 544400.

    Note: Map follows:

[[Page 8674]]


    Critical Habitat Unit 2: San Diego County, California. From USGS 
1:100,000 quadrangle maps Borrego Valley (1982) and El Cajon (1979), 
California. Lands in San Diego County within T9S, R4E, S1; T9S, R4E, 
S2SE; T9S, R4E, S11NE; T9S, R4E, S11SE; T9S, R4E, S12-S13; T9S, R4E, 
S14NE; T9S, R4E, S24; T9S, R4E, S25NW; T9S, R4E, S25NE; T9S, R4E, 
S25SE; T9S, R5E, S1-S36; T9S, R6E, S1-13; T9S, R6E, S14NW; T9S, R6E, 
S14NE; T9S, R6E, S15-S23; T9S, R6E, S24SW; T9S, R6E, S24SE; T9S, R6E, 
S25-S36; T9S, R7E, S1-S18; T9S, R7E, S19NE; T9S, R7E, S20NW; T9S, R7E, 
S20NE; T9S, R7E, S21-S27; T9S, R7E, S28NW; T9S, R7E, S28NE; T9S, R7E, 
S28SE; T9S, R7E, S31NW; T9S, R7E, S31SW; T9S, R7E, S33-S36; T9S, R8E, 
S1NE; T9S, R8E, S1SE; T9S, R8E, S1SW; T9S, R8E, S2NW; T9S, R8E, S2SW; 
T9S, R8E, S2SE; T9S, R8E, S3-S36; T10S, R5E, S1-S5; T10S, R5E, S8NW; 
T10S, R5E, S8NE; T10S, R5E, S9-S28; T10S, R5E, S33NE; T10S, R5E, S33NW; 
T10S, R5E, S33SE; T10S, R5E, S34-S36; T10S, R6E, S1-S4; T10S, R6E, 
S5NE; T10S, R6E, S6-S7; T10S, R6E, S9NE; T10S, R6E, S10-S14; T10S, R6E, 
S15NE; T10S, R6E, S18-S19; T10S, R6E, S23NE; T10S, R6E, S24NW; T10S, 
R6E, S24NE; T10S, R6E, S30NW; T10S, R6E, S30SW; T10S, R7E, S1-S4; T10S, 
R7E, S6NW; T10S, R7E, S6SW; T10S, R7E, S6SE; T10S, R7E, S7; T10S, R7E, 
S10NE; T10S, R7E, S10SE; T10S, R7E, S11-S12; T10S, R7E, S13NW; T10S, 
R7E, S13NE; T10S, R7E, S13SE; T10S, R7E, S14NW; T10S, R7E, S14NE; T10S, 
R7E, S18; T10S, R7E, S19NW; T10S, R7E, S19NE; T10S, R8E, S1-S18; T10S, 
R8E, S19NE; T10S, R8E, S20NE; T10S, R8E, S20NW; T10S, R8E, S20SE; T10S, 
R8E, S21-S23; T10S, R8E, S24NW; T10S, R8E, S24NE; T10S, R8E, S24SW; 
T10S, R8E, S26NW; T10S, R8E, S27NE; T10S, R8E, S28NW; T10S, R8E, S28NE; 
T11S, R5E, S1-S4; T11S, R5E, S5SE; T11S, R5E, S9-S14; T11S, R5E, S15NE; 
T11S, R5E, S15NW; T11S, R5E, S15SE; T11S, R5E, S22NE; T11S, R5E, S22SE; 
T11S, R5E, S23-S26; T11S, R5E, S27NE; T11S, R5E, S34-S36; T11S, R6E, 
S5NW; T11S, R6E, S5SW; T11S, R6E,

[[Page 8675]]

S6-S7; T11S, R6E, S18NW; T11S, R6E, S18SW; T11S, R6E, S19; T11S, R6E, 
S20NW; T11S, R6E, S20SW; T11S, R6E, S20SE; T11S, R6E, S28SW; T11S, R6E, 
S28SE; T11S, R6E, S29-S33; T11S, R6E, S34NW; T11S, R6E, S34SW; T11S, 
R6E, S34SE; T12S, R5E, S1-S3; T12S, R5E, S4NE; T12S, R5E, S4SE; T12S, 
R5E, S9NE; T12S, R5E, S9SE; T12S, R5E, S9SW; T12S, R5E, S10-S16; T12S, 
R5E, S17SE; T12S, R5E, S20NE; T12S, R5E, S20SE; T12S, R5E, S20SW; T12S, 
R5E, S21-S33; T12S, R5E, S34NE; T12S, R5E, S34NW; T12S, R5E, S35-S36; 
T12S, R6E, 1NW; T12S, R6E, S1SW; T12S, R6E, S1SE; T12S, R6E, S2-S36; 
T12S, R7E, S7-S8; T12S, R7E, S9SW; T12S, R7E, S13SE; T12S, R7E, S13SW; 
T12S, R7E, S14SW; T12S, R7E, S15-S36; T12S, R8E, S18SE; T12S, R8E, 
S18SW; T12S, R8E, S19; T12S, R8E, S20NW; T12S, R8E, S20SW; T12S, R8E, 
S20SE; T12S, R8E, S21SW; T12S, R8E, S21SE; T12S, R8E, S27SW; T12S, R8E, 
S28-S34; T12S, R8E, S35NW; T12S, R8E, S35SW; T13S, R5E, S1NW; T13S, 
R5E, S1NE; T13S, R5E, S1SE; T13S, R5E, S13SE; T13S, R5E, S13NE; T13S, 
R5E, S22SE; T13S, R5E, S23SW; T13S, R5E, S23SE; T13S, R5E, S24NE; T13S, 
R5E, S24SW; T13S, R5E, S24SE; T13S, R5E, S25-S27; T13S, R5E, S34NW; 
T13S, R5E, S34NE; T13S, R5E, S34SE; T13S, R5E, S35-S36; T13S, R6E, S1-
S6; T13S, R6E, S7NW; T13S, R6E, S7NE; T13S, R6E, S7SE; T13S, R6E, S8-
S36; T13S, R7E, S1-S36; T13S, R8E, S1-S36; T14S, R5E, S1-S2; T14S, R5E, 
S11-S13; T14S, R5E, S14NW; T14S, R5E, S14NE; T14S, R5E, S14SE; T14S, 
R5E, S23NE; T14S, R5E, S24NE; T14S, R5E, S24NW; T14S, R6E, S1-S30; 
T14S, R6E, S31NW; T14S, R6E, S31NE; T14S, R6E, S31SE; T14S, R6E, S32-
S36; T14S, R7E, S1NW; T14S, R7E, S1NE; T14S, R7E, S1SE; T14S, R7E, S2-
S9; T14S, R7E, S16NW; T14S, R7E, S16SE; T14S, R7E, S16SW; T14S, R7E, 
S17-S21; T14S, R7E, S22SW; T14S, R7E, S26SW; T14S, R7E, S27-S34; T14S, 
R7E, S35NW; T14S, R7E, S35SW; T14S, R8E, S1; T14S, R8E, S2NE; T14S, 
R8E, S2NW; T14S, R8E, S2SE; T14S, R8E, S3-S6; T14S, R8E, S8NW; T14S, 
R8E, S8NE; T14S, R8E, S9NW; T14S, R8E, S9NE; T14S, R8E, S12NE; T15S, 
R6E, S1-S4; T15S, R6E, S5NW; T15S, R6E, S5NE; T15S, R6E, S5SE; T15S, 
R6E, S9-S15; T15S, R6E, S16NW; T15S, R6E, S16NE; T15S, R6E, S22NE; 
T15S, R6E, S23-S24; T15S, R6E, S25NE; T15S, R6E, S25SE; T15S, R6E, 
S36NE; T15S, R7E, S1SW; T15S, R7E, S2-S11; T15S, R7E, S12NW; T15S, R7E, 
S12SW; T15S, R7E, S12SE; T15S, R7E, S13-S36; T15S, R8E, S10SE; T15S, 
R8E, S11SW; T15S, R8E, S11SE; T15S, R8E, S12NE; T15S, R8E, S12SW; T15S, 
R8E, S12SE; T15S, R8E, S13-S16; T15S, R8E, S17SE; T15S, R8E, S19-S36; 
T16S, R7E, S1-S6; T16S, R7E, S7NE; T16S, R7E, S8-S16; T16S, R7E, S17NW; 
T16S, R7E, S17NE; T16S, R7E, S17SE; T16S, R7E, S21-S27; T16S, R7E, 
S28NW; T16S, R7E, S28NE; T16S, R7E, S28SE; T16S, R7E, S33NE; T16S, R7E, 
S34-36; T16S, R8E, S1-S34; T16S, R8E, S35NW; T16S, R8E, S35SW; T16S, 
R8E, S35SE; T16S, R8E, S36SE; T17S, R7E, S1-S2; T17S, R7E, S3NE; T17S, 
R7E, S3NW; T17S, R7E, S3SE; T17S, R7E, S11-S14; T17S, R7E, S23NW; T17S, 
R7E, S23NE; T17S, R7E, S23SE; T17S, R7E, S24; T17S, R7E, S25NE; T17S, 
R8E, S1-S20; T17S, R8E, S21NW; T17S, R8E, S21NE; T17S, R8E, S22-S25; 
T17S, R8E, S26NW; T17S, R8E, S26NE; T17S, R8E, S26SE; T17S, R8E, S29NW; 
T17S, R8E, S30NW; T17S, R8E, S30NE; T17S, R8E, S36; T18S, R8E, S1NW; 
T18S, R8E, S1NE; T18S, R8E, S1SE. The following lands within the Valle 
de San Felipe Land Grant bounded by UTM NAD27 coordinates (X, Y): 
547000, 3664000; 548000, 3664000; 548000, 3663000; 552000, 3663000; 
552000, 3662000; 551000, 3662000; 551000, 3661000; 547000, 3661000; 
547000, 3664000.

    Note: Map follows:

[[Page 8676]]


    Critical Habitat Unit 3: Imperial County, California. From USGS 
1:100,000 quadrangle maps Borrego Valley (1982), El Cajon (1979), 
Salton Sea (1982), and El Centro (1982), California. Lands in Imperial 
County within T9S, R9E, S5SW; T9S, R9E, S6-S8; T9S, R9E, S9SW; T9S, 
R9E, S16NW; T9S, R9E, S16SW; T9S, R9E, S17-S20; T9S, R9E, S21NW; T9S, 
R9E, S21SW; T9S, R9E, S28NW; T9S, R9E, S28SW; T9S, R9E, S29-S32; T9S, 
R9E, S33NW; T9S, R9E, S33SE; T9S, R9E, S33SW; T10S, R9E, S3NW; T10S, 
R9E, S3SW; T10S, R9E, S4-S9; T10S, R9E, S10NW; T10S, R9E, S10SE; T10S, 
R9E, S10SW; T10S, R9E, S14-S18; T10S, R9E, S21NE; T10S, R9E, S21NW; 
T10S, R9E, S22NE; T10S, R9E, S22NW; T13S, R9E, S6SW; T13S, R9E, S7NW; 
T13S, R9E, S7SE; T13S, R9E, S7SW; T13S, R9E, S14SW; T13S, R9E, S15NW; 
T13S, R9E, S15SE; T13S, R9E, S15SW; T13S, R9E, S16-S23; T13S, R9E, 
S24SW; T13S, R9E, S25-S36; T13S, R10E, S29SW; T13S, R10E, S30-S32; 
T13S, R10E, S33SW; T14S, R9E, S1-S17; T14S, R9E, S18NE; T14S, R9E, 
S18SE; T14S, R9E, S19NE; T14S, R9E, S20-S28; T14S, R9E, S29NE; T14S, 
R9E, S29NW; T14S, R9E, S29SE; T14S, R9E, S32-S36; T14S, R10E, S4NW; 
T14S, R10E, S4SW; T14S, R10E, S5-S8; T14S, R10E, S9NW; T14S, R10E, 
S9SW; T14S, R10E, S16NW; T14S, R10E, S17-S19; T14S, R10E, S20NE; T14S, 
R10E, S20NW; T14S, R10E, S30NW; T14S, R10E, S30SW; T14S, R10E, S31NW; 
T14S, R10E, S31SW; T15S, R9E, S1-S5; T15S, R9E, S6NE; T15S, R9E, S7-
S36; T15S, R10E, S5SW; T15S, R10E, S6-S7; T15S, R10E, S8NW; T15S, R10E, 
S19; T15S, R10E, S20SW; T15S, R10E, S29NW; T15S, R10E, S29SW; T15S, 
R10E, S30-S33; T16.5S, R9.5E, S1NW; T16.5S, R9.5E, S1SE; T16.5S, R9.5E, 
S1SW; T16.5S, R9.5E, S2; T16.5S, R10E, S4SE; T16.5S, R10E, S4SW; 
T16.5S, R10E, S5SE; T16.5S, R10E, S5SW; T16.5S, R10E, S6SE; T16.5S, 
R10E, S6SW; T16S, R9E, S1-S14; T16S, R9E, S15NE; T16S, R9E,

[[Page 8677]]

S15NW; T16S, R9E, S15SE; T16S, R9E, S16NE; T16S, R9E, S16NW; T16S, R9E, 
S17NE; T16S, R9E, S17NW; T16S, R9E, S18NE; T16S, R9E, S19; T16S, R9E, 
S28SE; T16S, R9E, S28SW; T16S, R9E, S30NE; T16S, R9E, S30NW; T16S, R9E, 
S30SW; T16S, R9E, S31-S34; T16S, R9E, S35SW; T16S, R10E, S4-S7; T16S, 
R10E, S8NE; T16S, R10E, S8NW; T16S, R10E, S18NE; T16S, R10E, S18NW; 
T17S, R9E, S1-S36; T17S, R10E, S2-S10; T17S, R10E, S11NW; T17S, R10E, 
S11NE; T17S, R10E, S11SW; T17S, R10E, S13SW; T17S, R10E, S14NW; T17S, 
R10E, S14SW; T17S, R10E, S14SE; T17S, R10E, S15-S23; T17S, R10E, S24NW; 
T17S, R10E, S24SW; T17S, R10E, S25NW; T17S, R10E, S25SW; T17S, R10E, 
S26-S35; T17S, R10E, S36NW; T17S, R10E, S36SW; T18S, R9E, S1-S6; T18S, 
R9E, S7NE; T18S, R9E, S7SE; T18S, R9E, S7NW; T18S, R9E, S8-S11.

    Note: Map follows:


    Dated: January 12, 2001.
Kenneth L. Smith,
Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks.
[FR Doc. 01-1704 Filed 1-29-01; 11:24 am]