[Federal Register: September 19, 2006 (Volume 71, Number 181)]
[Page 54838-54839]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Draft Recovery Plan for the Nosa Luta or Rota Bridled White-eye 
(Zosterops rotensis)

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of document availability for review and comment.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, announce the 
availability of the Draft Recovery Plan for the Nosa Luta or Rota 
Bridled White-eye (Zosterops rotensis), for public review and comment.

DATES: Comments on the draft recovery plan must be received on or 
before November 20, 2006.

ADDRESSES: Copies of the draft recovery plan are available by request 
from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Pacific Islands Fish and 
Wildlife Office, 300 Ala Moana Boulevard, Room 3-122, Box 50088, 
Honolulu, Hawaii 96850 (phone: 808/792-9400). Written comments and 
materials regarding this draft recovery plan should be addressed to the 
Field Supervisor at the above Honolulu address. An electronic copy of 
the draft recovery plan is also available at http://endangered.fws.gov/recovery/index.html#plans

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Fred Amidon, Fish and Wildlife 
Biologist, at the above Honolulu address.



    Restoring endangered or threatened animals and plants to the point 
where they are again secure, self-sustaining members of their 
ecosystems is a primary goal of our endangered species program. The 
Endangered Species Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) (ESA) requires the 
development of recovery plans for listed species unless such a plan 
would not promote the conservation of a particular species. Recovery 
plans help guide the recovery effort by describing actions considered 
necessary for the conservation of the species, establishing criteria 
for downlisting or delisting listed species, and estimating time and 
cost for implementing the measures needed for recovery.
    Section 4(f) of the ESA requires that public notice, and an 
opportunity for public review and comment, be provided during recovery 
plan development. We will consider all information presented during the 
public comment period prior to approval of each new or revised recovery 
plan. Substantive comments on the recovery needs of the species or 
other aspects of recovery plan development may result in changes to the 
recovery plan. Substantive comments regarding recovery plan 
implementation may not necessarily result in changes to the recovery 
plan, but will be forwarded to appropriate Federal or other entities so 
that they can take these comments into account during the course of 
implementing recovery actions. Individual responses to comments will 
not be provided.
    The Rota bridled white-eye, known as nosa Luta in Chamorro, is a 
bird endemic to the island of Rota in the Mariana archipelago and was 
federally listed as endangered in 2004 (January 22, 2004, 69 FR 3022). 
In 1999, the population was estimated to be approximately 1,000 
individuals, representing a 90 percent decline since 1982, and the 
species' core range consisted of approximately 628 acres (254 hectares) 
of forest above 490 feet (150 meters) elevation. Available information 
indicates that habitat loss and degradation and predation by introduced 
rats (Rattus spp.) and black drongos (Dicrurus macrocercus) are having 
some impact on the nosa Luta population. Due to its restricted range 
and small population size, the species is also highly susceptible to 
random catastrophic events such as typhoons and the accidental 
introduction of new predators such as the brown treesnake (Boiga 
irregularis), and avian diseases such as West Nile virus.
    The draft recovery plan for the nosa Luta focuses on the following 
actions: (1) Protecting and enhancing forests in the species' range; 
(2) determining the specific habitat requirements of the nosa Luta to 
manage areas for the species' conservation; (3) assessing the impact of 
predation by black drongos and rats, and controlling these species as 
appropriate; (4) preventing the

[[Page 54839]]

introduction of new predators and avian diseases; and (5) developing 
techniques to safeguard the species from extinction due to random 
catastrophic events.
    The immediate goals of the draft recovery plan are to stop further 
declines in the range and composition of the nosa Luta population, 
develop safeguards to prevent the species from going extinct, and 
restore the population to at least the abundance levels estimated in 
1982 (10,000 individuals). In addition to suggesting actions to address 
the immediate threats to the species, the draft recovery plan calls for 
research to determine the specific habitat requirements and life 
history parameters of the nosa Luta to inform long-term management 
decisions for the effective recovery of the species.

Public Comments Solicited

    We solicit written comments on the draft recovery plan described. 
All comments received by the date specified above will be considered 
prior to approval of this plan.
    Our practice is to make comments, including names and home 
addresses of respondents, available for public review during regular 
business hours. Individual respondents may request that we withhold 
their home addresses from the record, which we will honor to the extent 
allowable by law. There also may be circumstances in which we would 
withhold from the record a respondent's identity, as allowable by law. 
If you wish us to withhold your name and/or address, you must state 
this prominently at the beginning of your comment, but you should be 
aware that we may be required to disclose your name and address 
pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act. However, we will not 
consider anonymous comments. We will make all submissions from 
organizations or businesses, and from individuals identifying 
themselves as representatives or officials of organizations or 
businesses, available for public inspection in their entirety. Comments 
and materials received will be available for public inspection, by 
appointment, during normal business hours at the above address.


    The authority for this action is section 4(f) of the Endangered 
Species Act, 16 U.S.C. 1533 (f).

    Dated: June 6, 2006.
Carolyn A. Bohan,
Acting Regional Director, Region 1, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. E6-15510 Filed 9-18-06; 8:45 am]