[Federal Register: October 29, 2010 (Volume 75, Number 209)]
[Page 66779-66780]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

[FWS-R8-ES-2010-N199; 80230-1265-0000-S3]

Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge, Elko and White Pine Counties, 
NV; Comprehensive Conservation Plan and Environmental Assessment

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of Intent; request for comments.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), intend to 
prepare a Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP) and Environmental 
Assessment (EA) for the Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge, located in 
Elko and White Pine Counties of Nevada. We provide this notice in 
compliance with our CCP policy to advise other Federal and State 
agencies, Tribes, and the public of our intentions, and to obtain 
suggestions and information on the scope of issues to consider in the 
planning process.

DATES: To ensure consideration, we must receive your written comments 
by December 28, 2010.

ADDRESSES: Send your comments or requests for more information by any 
of the following methods.
     E-mail: fw8plancomments@fws.gov. Include ``Ruby 
Lake CCP'' in the subject line of the message.
     Fax: Attn: Mark Pelz, (916) 414-6497.
     U.S. Mail: Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge, 
HC 60, Box 860, Ruby Valley, Nevada 89833-9802.
     In-Person Drop-off: You may drop off comments 
during regular business hours; please call (775) 779-2237 for 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mark Pelz, Chief, Refuge Planning, at 
(916) 414-6500, or Guy Wagner, Refuge Manager, at (775) 779-2237. 
Further information may also be found at http: //www.fws.gov/rubylake/.



    With this notice, we initiate our process for developing a CCP for 
Ruby Lake NWR in Elko and White Pine Counties, NV. This notice complies 
with our CCP policy to (1) Advise other Federal and State agencies, 
Tribes, and the public of our intention to conduct detailed planning on 
this refuge and (2) obtain suggestions and information on the scope of 
issues to consider in the environmental document and during development 
of the CCP.


The CCP Process

    The National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966 (16 
U.S.C. 668dd-668ee) (Administration Act), as amended by the National 
Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, requires us to develop 
a CCP for each national wildlife refuge. The purpose for developing a 
CCP is to provide refuge managers with a 15-year plan for achieving 
refuge purposes and contributing toward the mission of the National 
Wildlife Refuge System, consistent with sound principles of fish and 
wildlife management, conservation, legal mandates, and our policies. In 
addition to outlining broad management direction on conserving wildlife 
and their habitats, CCPs identify wildlife-dependent recreational 
opportunities available to the public, including opportunities for 
hunting, fishing, wildlife observation and photography, and 
environmental education and interpretation. We will review and update 
the CCP at least every 15 years in accordance with the Administration 
    Each unit of the National Wildlife Refuge System was established 
for specific purposes. We use these purposes as the foundation for 
developing and prioritizing the management goals and objectives for 
each refuge within the National Wildlife Refuge System mission, and to 
determine how the public can use each refuge. The planning process is a 
way for us and the public to evaluate management goals, objectives, and 
strategies that will ensure the best possible approach to wildlife, 
plant, and habitat conservation, while providing for wildlife-dependent 
recreation opportunities that are compatible with each refuge's 
establishing purposes and

[[Page 66780]]

the mission of the National Wildlife Refuge System.
    Our CCP process provides opportunities for participation by Tribal, 
State, and local governments; agencies; organizations; and the public. 
We will be contacting identified stakeholders and individuals at this 
time for initial input. If you would like to meet with planning staff 
or would like to receive periodic updates, please contact us (see 
ADDRESSES section). At this time we encourage comments in the form of 
issues, concerns, ideas, and suggestions for the future management of 
Ruby Lake NWR.
    We will conduct the environmental review of this project in 
accordance with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy 
Act of 1969, as amended (NEPA) (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.); NEPA 
regulations (40 CFR parts 1500-1508); other appropriate Federal laws 
and regulations; and our policies and procedures for compliance with 
those laws and regulations.

Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge

    Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) was established in 1938 as 
a refuge and breeding ground for migratory birds and other wildlife 
(Executive Order 7923). Located along migration corridors serving both 
the Pacific and Central flyways, this refuge is a crossroads for birds 
migrating west along the Humboldt River to the Owens Valley, east to 
Utah's Great Salt Lake, northwest to the Klamath Basin, and south to 
the Colorado River Valley. Ruby Lake NWR supports the largest 
population of nesting canvasback ducks west of the Mississippi River 
outside Alaska, and is a vital waterfowl nesting area.
    More than 200 springs emanating from the base of the Ruby Mountains 
provide life-sustaining water to the 39,926-acre refuge. The marsh is 
surrounded by 22,926 acres of meadows, grasslands, alkali playa, and 
shrub-steppe uplands. Water elevations in some marsh units are 
controlled to provide nesting and feeding areas for waterfowl and other 
marsh bird species. Vegetation in the meadows and grasslands is managed 
to provide nesting cover and feeding areas for wildlife. Existing 
public uses include wildlife observation, photography, interpretation, 
environmental education, waterfowl hunting, and recreational fishing.

Scoping: Preliminary Issues, Concerns, and Opportunities

    We have identified preliminary issues, concerns, and opportunities 
that we may address in the CCP. These include wildlife management, 
habitat management, wildlife-dependent recreation, environmental 
education, and cultural resources. During public scoping, we may 
identify additional issues.

Public Meetings

    We will give the public an opportunity to provide input at a public 
meeting (or meetings). You may obtain the schedule from the refuge 
planner or refuge manager (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). You 
may also submit comments or request a meeting during the planning 
process by mail, e-mail, or fax (see ADDRESSES). There will be 
additional opportunities to provide public input once we have prepared 
a draft CCP.

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.

    Dated: October 22, 2010.
Alexandra Pitts,
Acting Regional Director, Pacific Southwest Region, Sacramento, 
[FR Doc. 2010-27349 Filed 10-28-10; 8:45 am]