[Federal Register: October 19, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 202)]
[Page 59301-59302]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Recovery Plan for Nosa Luta or Rota Bridled White-eye (Zosterops 

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of document availability.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, announce the 
availability of the Recovery Plan for the Nosa Luta or Rota Bridled 
White-eye (Zosterops rotensis). This species, which is found only on 
the island of Rota in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, 
was federally listed as endangered in 2004.

ADDRESSES: Copies of the 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). An electronic copy of the recovery 
plan is also available at http://endangered.fws.gov/recovery/index.html#plans.
 Printed copies of the recovery plan will be available 

for distribution in 4 to 6 weeks.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Fred Amidon, Fish and Wildlife 
Biologist, at the above Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office 



    Recovery of endangered or threatened animals and plants is a 
primary goal of the Endangered Species Act (Act) (16 U.S.C. 1531 et 
seq.) and our endangered species program. Recovery means improvement of 
the status of listed species to the point at which listing is no longer 
required under the criteria in section 4(a)(1) of the Act. Recovery 
plans describe actions considered necessary for the conservation of the 
species, establish criteria for downlisting or delisting listed 
species, and estimate time and cost for implementing the measures 
needed for recovery.
    The Act requires the development of recovery plans for endangered 
or threatened species unless such a plan would not promote the 
conservation of the species. Recovery plans help guide the recovery 
effort by describing actions considered necessary for the conservation 
of the species, and estimating time and cost for implementing the 
measures needed for recovery.
    Section 4(f) of the Act requires that public notice and an 
opportunity for public review and comment be provided during recovery 
plan development. In fulfillment of this requirement, the Draft 
Recovery Plan for the Nosa Luta or Rota Bridled White-eye (Zosterops 
rotensis) was made available for public comment from September 19 to 
November 20, 2006 (71 FR 54838). Information provided during the public 
comment period was considered in our preparation of this recovery plan, 
and is summarized in an appendix to the plan.
    The nosa Luta, or Rota bridled white-eye, is an endemic bird of the 
island of Rota in the Mariana archipelago and was federally listed as 
endangered in 2004 (69 FR 3022). In 1999, the population was estimated 
to be approximately 1,000 individuals 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 (Ratttus 
spp.) and black drongos (Dicrurus macrocercus) may be 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 like typhoons and the accidental introduction of 
new predators like the brown treesnake (Boiga irregularis), and avian 

[[Page 59302]]

like west Nile virus. Therefore, recovery actions in this plan focus on 
protecting and enhancing forests in the species' range; determining the 
specific habitat requirements of the species to better manage areas for 
the species' conservation; assessing the impact of black drongos and 
rats on nosa Luta, and controlling these species as appropriate; 
preventing the introduction of new predators and avian diseases; and 
developing techniques to safeguard the species from extinction due to 
random catastrophic events. Due to the limited information available 
about the species and its threats, this recovery plan focuses on ten 
years of the recovery process. As additional information is learned 
about the species and its threats, recovery strategies and measures 
should be reassessed to determine the steps needed for downlisting and 
then delisting the species.
    The primary objectives of this 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 
reverse population declines to population levels estimated in 1982 
(10,000 individuals). These objectives will be attained by conducting 
the following actions: (1) Reducing the decline of intact nosa Luta 
habitat to help reduce further population declines and range 
restrictions and increasing the amount of habitat available for 
sustaining an increasing nosa Luta population; (2) assessing the impact 
of black drongos and introduced rats on the nosa Luta population and 
controlling these species, as needed, to decrease their impacts on the 
nosa Luta; (3) preventing the brown treesnake and other threats, like 
West Nile virus, from becoming established on Rota to prevent further 
declines in the nosa Luta population; (4) evaluating the need and 
determining the requirements for establishing a second population of 
nosa Luta to prevent the species' extinction; and (5) establishing an 
outreach program to increase public support for conservation of the 
nosa Luta.

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

    Dated: September 7, 2007.
Renne Lohoefener,
Regional Director, Region 1, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. E7-20628 Filed 10-18-07; 8:45 am]