[Federal Register: October 9, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 194)]
[Page 57346-57347]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants: Draft Post-
Delisting Monitoring Plan for the Virginia Northern Flying Squirrel 
(Glaucomys sabrinus fuscus)

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of Availability of Draft Post-delisting Monitoring Plan; 
Request for Comments.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the 
availability of the draft post-delisting monitoring plan (draft PDM 
Plan) for the Virginia northern flying squirrel (Glaucomys sabrinus 
fuscus), currently referred to as the West Virginia northern flying 
squirrel (WVNFS). The Endangered Species Act (ESA) requires that the 
Service implement a system, in cooperation with the States, to monitor 
effectively, for at least 5 years, the status of all species that have 
been recovered and no longer need protection of the ESA. The WVNFS has 
been proposed to be removed from the Federal List of Threatened and 
Endangered Wildlife and Plants (delisted) due to recovery.

DATES: Comments from all interested parties on the WVNFS draft PDM Plan 
must be received on or before November 8, 2007.

ADDRESSES: The draft PDM Plan may be downloaded from our Web site at 
http://www.fws.gov/northeast/endangered/. To request a copy of the 

draft PDM Plan, write to our West Virginia Field Office; U.S. Fish and 
Wildlife Service, 694 Beverly Pike, Elkins, West Virginia 26241; or 
call 304-636-6586 to receive a copy. You may also send an electronic 
mail request to laura_hill@fws.gov. Specify whether you want to 
receive a hard copy by U.S. mail or an electronic copy by electronic 
    Send your comments by any of the following methods. See ``Viewing 
Documents'' and ``Public Comments Solicited'' under SUPPLEMENTARY 
INFORMATION for important information.
     Mail: WVNFS Draft PDM Plan Comments, U.S. Fish and 
Wildlife Service, West Virginia Field Office, 694 Beverly Pike, Elkins, 
West Virginia 26241.
     Hand Delivery/Courier: Same address as above.
     Electronic mail: laura_hill@fws.gov. Include ``WVNFS 
Draft PDM Plan Comments'' in the subject line of the message.
     Facsimile: 304-636-7824. Include ``WVNFS Draft PDM Plan 
Comments'' in the subject line.
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 

Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Direct all questions or requests for 
additional information about the draft PDM Plan to Laura Hill (see 
ADDRESSES). Individuals who are hearing impaired or speech impaired may 
call the Federal Relay Service at 1-800-877-8337 for TTY assistance, 24 
hours a day 7 days a week.



    We published the proposed rule to remove the WVNFS, due to 
recovery, from the Federal List of Threatened and endangered Wildlife 
on December 19, 2006 with a 120-day comment period that closed on April 
23, 2007. Recovery actions have resulted in reduction in the threats, 
which has led to: (1) A significant increase in the number of known 
WVNFS capture sites: (2) multiple generation reproduction; (3) the 
proven resiliency of the squirrels; and (4) the vast improvement and 
continued expansion of suitable habitat.

[[Page 57347]]

We are currently reviewing the comments received on the proposed rule 
and preparing responses as appropriate.
    Section 4(g)(1) of the ESA requires that we implement a system, in 
cooperation with the States, to effectively monitor, for not less than 
5 years, the status of all species that have been recovered and 
delisted. Additionally, we are to make prompt use of the emergency 
listing authority under section 4(b)(7) of the ESA if the recovered 
species is presented with significant risk to its well being. In order 
to meet the ESA's monitoring requirement, and to facilitate the 
efficient collection of data, we have designed a plan to detect changes 
in the status of the WVNFS.
    The WVNFS draft PDM Plan was developed in cooperation with the 
State resources agencies of West Virginia and Virginia and Virginia and 
the U.S. Forest Service. Our West Virginia Field Office (WVFO) will 
have the lead agency responsibility for this monitoring effort, and 
will coordinate all phases of implementation of the plan and ensure 
that monitoring requirements outlined within the plan are accomplished. 
The draft PDM Plan proposes to conduct monitoring annually for at least 
10 years. The primary focus will be on WVNFS habitat and implementation 
of plans or agreements to protect and manage habitat. Distribution and 
persistency throughout its range will also be monitored.

Viewing Documents

    The supporting documents for the draft PDM Plan is available for 
inspection, by appointment, during normal business hours at our WVFO 
(see ADDRESSES). The comments and materials we receive on the 
monitoring plan during the comment period will be available for public 
inspection by appointment during normal business hours at the WVFO, 
304-636-6586. Please call to make arrangements to view documents.

Public Comments Solicited

    We request comments on the WVNFS draft PDM Plan. All comments 
received by the date specified above will be considered during 
preparation of the final PDM Plan. We will take into consideration the 
relevant comments, suggestions, or objections that we receive by the 
comment due date indicated above in the DATES section. These comments, 
suggestions, or objections, and any additional information received, 
may lead us to adopt a final PDM Plan that differs from this draft PDM 
Plan. Comments merely stating support or opposition to the draft PDM 
Plan without providing supporting data are not as helpful.

Public Availability of Comments

    Before including your address, phone number, electronic mail 
address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you 
should be aware that your entire document--including your personal 
identifying information--may be publicly available at any time. While 
you can ask us in your comments to withhold your personal identifying 
information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be 
able to do so.

    Authority: The authority for this action is the Endangered 
Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.).

    Dated: September 14, 2007.
Thomas J. Healy,
Acting Regional Director, Region 5, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 07-4940 Filed 10-5-07; 8:45 am]