[Federal Register: August 26, 2009 (Volume 74, Number 164)]
[Proposed Rules]               
[Page 43092-43093]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 17

[FWS-R1-ES-2007-0004; MO 9221050083]

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 90-Day Finding on 
a Petition To List the Black-Footed Albatross (Phoebastria nigripes) as 
Threatened or Endangered

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of 90-day petition finding; reopening of the information 
solicitation period.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the 
reopening of the public information solicitation period on our October 
9, 2007, 90-day finding on a petition to list the black-footed 
albatross (Phoebastria nigripes) as threatened or endangered under the 
Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). This action will 
provide all interested parties with an additional opportunity to submit 
information and materials on the status of the black-footed albatross. 
Information previously submitted need not be resubmitted as it has 
already been incorporated into the public record and will be fully 
considered in the 12-month finding.

DATES: We are reopening the public information solicitation period and 
request that we receive information on or before September 25, 2009.

ADDRESSES: You may submit information by one of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 
Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
     U.S. mail or hand-delivery: Public Comments Processing, 
Attn: [FWS-R1-ES-2007-0004], Division of Policy and Directives 
Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, 
Suite 222, Arlington, VA 22203.
    You should be aware that we will post all comments on http://
www.regulations.gov. This generally means that we will post any 
personal information you provide us (see the Information Solicited 
section below for more information).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Gina Shultz, Deputy Field Supervisor, 
Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office, 300 Ala Moana Boulevard, Box 
50088, Room 3122, Honolulu, HI 96850 (telephone 808-792-9400; facsimile 
808-792-9581). If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf 
(TDD), please call the Federal Information Relay Service at 800-877-


Information Solicited

    We are soliciting information during this reopened information 
solicitation period on the status of the black-footed albatross. We 
published a 90-day finding on a petition to list the black-footed 
albatross as threatened or endangered in the Federal Register on 
October 9, 2007 (72 FR 57278). If you submitted information previously 
on the status of the black-footed albatross during the previous 
information solicitation period, please do not resubmit it. This 
information has been incorporated into the public record and will be 
fully considered in the preparation of the 12-month finding.
    You may submit your information and materials concerning the 90-day 
finding by one of the methods listed in the ADDRESSES section. Please 
be aware that if you submit information via http://www.regulations.gov 
your entire submission--including any personal identifying 
information--will be posted on the Web site. If your submission is made 
via hardcopy that includes personal identifying information, you may 
request at the top of your document that we withhold this information 
from public review. However, we cannot guarantee that we will be able 
to do so. We will also post all hardcopy submissions on http://
    Information and materials we receive, as well as supporting 
documentation we used in preparing the 90-day finding for the black-
footed albatross, will be available for public inspection on  http://
www.regulations.gov, or by appointment, during normal business hours, 
at the Service's Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office (see FOR 


    On October 9, 2007, we published a 90-day finding on a petition to 
list the black-footed albatross as threatened or endangered (72 FR 
57278). In that 90-day finding, we found that the petition presented 
substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that 
listing the black-footed albatross may be warranted. We also initiated 
a status review to determine if listing the species

[[Page 43093]]

is warranted, and announced a 60-day public information solicitation 
period on the petition finding and status review, which ended on 
December 10, 2007.
    We received two requests for an extension of the information 
solicitation period in order to allow agencies and interested persons 
the opportunity to provide additional information for our consideration 
during this status review. In particular, these requests were based on 
the anticipated publication of a formal status assessment of the black-
footed (and Laysan) albatross by the U.S. Geological Survey, Biological 
Resources Discipline (USGS-BRD). This status assessment is now 
available to the public for review (http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2009/5131/
). The USGS-BRD Status Assessment of Laysan and Black-footed 
Albatrosses provides a synthesis and review of all existing data and 
other information about the species, including an assessment of 
fishery-related mortality and statistical models of the population 
status and trajectory. This assessment, along with other information 
provided by the public and reviewers on the 90-day petition finding, 
will be an important source of information for the status review and 
12-month finding on the black-footed albatross.
    It is important to note that the standard for ``substantial 
information'' indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted 
for a 90-day finding is in contrast to the 12-month finding that 
determines whether a petitioned action is warranted. A 90-day finding 
is not a status assessment of the species and does not constitute a 
status review under the Act. Our final determination as to whether a 
petitioned action is warranted is not made until we have completed a 
thorough status review of the species, which is conducted following a 
positive 90-day finding. Because the Act's standards for 90-day and 12-
month findings are different, as described above, a positive 90-day 
finding does not mean that the 12-month finding also will be positive.


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

    Dated: August 17, 2009.
 Dan Ashe,
 Acting Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. E9-20604 Filed 8-25-09; 8:45 am]