[Federal Register: April 30, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 82)]
[Page 21283-21284]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Draft Safe Harbor Agreement and Application for an Enhancement of 
Survival Permit for the Attwater's Prairie Chicken, Northern Aplomado 
Falcon, Whooping Crane, and Black Lace Cactus for Activities on Private 
Lands in All or Portions of Aransas, Austin, Colorado, Galveston, 
Goliad, Refugio, and Victoria Counties, TX (Grazing Lands Conservation 

AGENCY: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability; receipt of application.


SUMMARY: The Coastal Prairie Coalition, Grazing Lands Conservation 
Initiative (GLCI) (Applicant) has applied to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service (Service) for an enhancement of survival permit pursuant to 
section 10(a)(1)(A) of the Endangered Species Act (Act) of 1973, as 
amended. The requested permit, which is for a period of 99 years, 
includes a draft Safe Harbor Agreement (Agreement) for the endangered 
Attwater's prairie chicken (Tympanuchus cupido attwateri), the 
endangered Northern aplomado falcon (Falco femoralis septentrionalis), 
the endangered Whooping crane (Grus Americana), and the endangered 
black lace cactus (Echinocereus reichenbachii var. albertii) in all or 
portions of Aransas, Austin, Colorado, Galveston, Goliad, Refugio, and 
Victoria counties, Texas. We invite public comment.

DATES: To ensure consideration, written comments must be received on or 
before May 30, 2007.

ADDRESSES: Persons wishing to review the application may obtain a copy 
by writing to the Regional Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 
P.O. Box 1306, Room 4102, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87103. Persons 
wishing to review the draft Agreement or other related documents may 
obtain a copy by written or telephone request to the Field Supervisor, 
Corpus Christi Ecological Services Field Office, c/o Texas A&M 
University at Corpus Christi, 6300 Ocean Drive, Unit 5837, Corpus 
Christi, Texas 78412-5837, (361) 994-9005. The documents will also be 
available for public inspection, by appointment only, during normal 
business hours (8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) at the Service's Corpus Christi 
office. Comments concerning the draft Agreement or other related 
documents should be submitted in writing to the Field Supervisor at the 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Corpus Christi Ecological Services 
Field Office, c/o Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi, 6300 Ocean 
Drive, Unit 5837, Corpus Christi, Texas 78412-5837. Please refer to 
permit number TE-151746-0 when submitting comments. All comments 
received, including names and addresses, will become a part of the 
official administrative record and may be made available to the public.

Public Availability of Comments

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

Wildlife Service, Corpus Christi Ecological Services Field Office, c/o 
Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi, 6300 Ocean Drive, Unit 5837, 
Corpus Christi, Texas 78412-5837 (361-994-9005; Fax 361-994-8262, or 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Applicant has applied to the Service for 
a section 10(a)(1)(A) enhancement of survival permit for the endangered 
Attwater's prairie chicken, the endangered Northern aplomado falcon, 
the endangered Whooping crane, and the endangered black lace cactus in 
all or portions of Aransas, Austin, Colorado, Galveston, Goliad, 
Refugio, and Victoria counties, Texas for a period of 99 years.


    The Applicant plans to implement conservation measures designed to 
promote the recovery of covered species on enrolled private lands 
located in the counties listed above. The conservation measures will 
improve and maintain healthy productive grasslands, reduce brush 
canopy, modify plant composition, promote growth of or enhance the 
detection and/or palatability of desired foods, increase prey base, 
facilitate the accumulation of fine fuels for prescription burning, 
provide additional habitat, provide upland freshwater supplies, and aid 
in dispersal of covered species among various protected habitats, 
providing a measure of insurance against losses due to demographic or 
genetic factors and catastrophic events. The Agreement is expected to 
provide a net conservation benefit for the Attwater's prairie chicken, 
Northern aplomado falcon, Whooping crane, and black lace cactus. Due to 
the programmatic nature of this Agreement, baseline conditions will be 
determined at the time of enrollment. Baseline conditions for most 
properties enrolled under the Agreement are anticipated to be zero. 
Where participating properties are determined to have an environmental 
baseline greater than zero, these areas shall be described in the 
Certificate of Inclusion (CI) and Prairie Management Agreement, with 
detailed descriptions and/or maps showing the locations of existing 
habitat or populations attached to the CI and Prairie Management 
    The Agreement will provide certainty to the Applicant relative to 
future property-use restrictions in the event that any of the covered 
species should be taken on their land as a result of implementation of 
the proposed conservation measures.
    Under a Safe Harbor Agreement, participating property owners 
voluntarily undertake management activities on their property to 
enhance, restore, or maintain habitat benefiting species listed under 
the Act. Safe Harbor Agreements encourage private and other non-Federal 
property owners to implement conservation efforts for listed species by 
assuring property owners they will not be subject to increased property 
use restrictions if

[[Page 21284]]

their efforts attract listed species to their property or increase the 
numbers or distribution of listed species already on their property.
    Section 9 of the Act prohibits take of threatened or endangered 
species. However, the Service, under limited circumstances, may issue 
permits to take threatened and endangered wildlife species incidental 
to, and not the purpose of, otherwise lawful activities.

Christopher T. Jones,
Acting Regional Director, Southwest Region, Albuquerque, New Mexico.
[FR Doc. E7-8164 Filed 4-27-07; 8:45 am]