[Federal Register: September 5, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 171)]
[Page 50975-50976]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Notice: Receipt of Application for an Incidental Take Permit; 
Request for Comments

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.


SUMMARY: The City of Adrian (Applicant) has applied to the U.S. Fish 
and Wildlife Service (Service) for an incidental take permit (ITP) 
pursuant to section 10(a)(1)(B) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, 
as amended (Act). The proposed duration of the permit is 30 years. The 
Applicant has prepared a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) to address 
potential impacts to the federally endangered Topeka shiner (Notropis 
    This notice, provided pursuant to section 10(a)(1)(B) of the Act, 
advises the public and other agencies of the availability of the HCP 
for review and comment.
    The Service has made a preliminary determination that the HCP and 
permit application are eligible for categorical exclusion under the 
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). The basis for this 
determination is contained in an Environmental Action Statement and 
low-effect screening form, which are also available for public review.

DATES: Written data or comments must be received on or before October 
5, 2007.

ADDRESSES: Send written comments to Tony Sullins, Field Supervisor, 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Twin Cities Field Office, 4101 East 
80th Street, Bloomington, MN 55425. Fax number: 612-725-3609.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Phil Delphey (612) 725-3548, 
extension 206.


Availability of Documents

    Individuals requesting copies of the applications and proposed HCP 
should contact the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service by telephone at (612) 
725-3548 or by letter (see ADDRESSES). Copies of the proposed HCP also 
are available for public inspection during regular business hours at 
the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bloomington Field Office, 4101 East 
80th Street, Bloomington, MN, or at the Service's Regional Web site at: 
http://www.fws.gov/midwest/Endangered/permits/hcp/index.html. All 

comments received become part of the official public record. Requests 
for such comments will be handled in accordance with the Freedom of 
Information Act and the Council on Environmental Quality's NEPA 
regulations [40 CFR 1506.6(f)]. Our practice is to make comments, 
including names and home addresses of respondents, available for public 
review during regular business hours. Individual respondents may 
request that we withhold their home address from the record, which we 
will honor to the extent allowable by law. If a respondent wishes us to 
withhold his/her name and/or address, this must be stated prominently 
at the beginning of the comment.


    Section 9 of the Act and its implementing Federal regulations 
prohibit the take of animal species listed as endangered or threatened. 
The definition of take under the Act includes the following activities: 
To harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or 
collect, or attempt to engage in such conduct (16 U.S.C. 1538). The 
Service has principal trust responsibility for the conservation and 
protection of threatened and endangered species under the ESA. Section 
10 of the ESA, 16 U.S.C. 1539, establishes a program whereby persons 
seeking to pursue activities that otherwise could give rise to 
liability for unlawful ``take'' of federally-protected species may 
receive an ITP, which protects them from such liability. To obtain an 
ITP, the applicant must submit an HCP and the taking must be incidental 
to, and not the purpose of, an otherwise lawful activity. Id. 
Sec. Sec.  1539(a)(1)(B), 1539(a)(2)(A). Once the Service has 
determined that the applicant has satisfied these and other statutory 
criteria, it may issue the ITP.
    The Applicant operates a municipal well field and is proposing to 
increase the annual consumption of groundwater at the well field from 
50 million to 60.5 million gallons per year. The increase in the annual 
consumption of groundwater at the Adrian well field has the potential 
to impact water levels and stream flow in an unnamed stream that 
borders the well field to the south. The Topeka

[[Page 50976]]

shiner (Notropis topeka), which is listed as endangered under the 
Endangered Species Act, inhabits the tributary stream. Proposed 
operations of the well field may cause take of Topeka shiners in the 
stream. The maximum pumping rate for the well field will remain 
unchanged. Therefore, anticipated impacts to stream flow and water 
levels in the tributary are expected to be minor.
    The purposes of the HCP are to minimize incidental take, to 
mitigate the effects of any such take to the maximum extent 
practicable, and to avoid any appreciable reduction in the likelihood 
of the survival and recovery of this species in the wild. Topeka 
shiners rely on pools in the main channel of streams and off channel 
pools (e.g., oxbows). Therefore, the proposed mitigation strategy for 
the project is creation of new pool habitat in a stream reach inhabited 
by Topeka shiners. The Applicant proposes to follow the general design 
of similar pools constructed by the Service in Iowa at one of two 
proposed mitigation sites and to monitor the constructed habitat to 
ensure that it contains the physical habitat features essential to the 
conservation of Topeka shiners. The creation of new pool habitat, along 
with the proposed monitoring program, is intended to accomplish the 
following biological goals of the HCP: (1) Ensure that the current 
range of Topeka shiners in Minnesota is not diminished; and, (2) 
facilitate the ability of the existing Topeka shiners to increase their 
population stability and/or abundance within its current range.


    The Service will evaluate the permit application, the HCP, and the 
comments submitted thereon to determine whether the application meets 
the requirements of section 10(a)(1)(B) of the Endangered Species Act 
of 1973, as amended. If the requirements are met, the Service will 
issue an incidental take permit to the Applicant for take of Topeka 
shiners incidental to the otherwise lawful activities of the project. 
The Service will not make a final decision until after the end of the 
30-day comment period and will fully consider all comments received 
during the comment period.


    This document is published under the authority of the Endangered 
Species Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.).

    Dated: August 29, 2007.
Tony Sullins,
Field Supervisor.
[FR Doc. E7-17520 Filed 9-4-07; 8:45 am]