[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 50 (Thursday, March 14, 2013)]
[Pages 16287-16288]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-05900]



Fish and Wildlife Service

[FWS-R3-R-2012-N260; FXRS1265030000-134-FF03R06000]

Great Lakes Islands Refuges, MI and WI; Final Comprehensive 
Conservation Plan and Finding of No Significant Impact for 
Environmental Assessment

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the 
availability of a final comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and 
finding of no significant impact (FONSI) for the environmental 
assessment (EA) for islands that are part of the National Wildlife 
Refuge System in Lakes Huron, Michigan, and Superior. The CCP includes 
Gravel Island, Green Bay, Harbor Island, Huron, and Michigan Islands 
National Wildlife Refuges (Great Lakes Islands Refuges). In this final 
CCP, we describe how we intend to manage the refuges for the next 15 

ADDRESSES: You will find the final CCP and the EA/FONSI on the planning 
Web site at http://www.fws.gov/midwest/planning/GreatLakesIslands/index.html. A limited number of hard copies and CD-ROMs are available. 
You may request one by any of the following methods:
     Email: r3planning@fws.gov. Include ``Great Lakes Islands 
Final CCP'' in the subject line of the message.
     U.S. Mail: Conservation Planning, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, 5600 American Blvd. West, Suite 990, Bloomington, MN 55437.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Gary Muehlenhardt, 612-713-5477.



    With this notice, we continue the CCP process for the Great Lakes 
Islands Refuges, which we began by publishing a notice of intent in the 
Federal Register (73 FR 76677) on December 17, 2008. The Great Lakes 
Islands Refuges are comprised of Gravel Island and Green Bay National 
Wildlife Refuges, Door County, Wisconsin; Harbor Island National 
Wildlife Refuge, Chippewa County, Michigan; Huron National Wildlife 
Refuge, Marquette County, Michigan; and Michigan Islands National 
Wildlife Refuge, Arenac, Alpena, and Charlevoix Counties, Michigan.
    For more about the initial process and the history of these 
refuges, see that notice. We released the draft CCP and EA to the 
public, announcing and requesting comments in a notice of availability 
(77 FR 51552) on August 24, 2012. The 30-day comment period ended on 
September 24, 2012. A summary of public comments and the agency 
responses is included in the final CCP.


    The National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966, as 
amended by the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997 
(16 U.S.C.

[[Page 16288]]

668dd-668ee) (Administration Act), requires us to develop a CCP for 
each national wildlife refuge. The purpose in developing a CCP is to 
provide refuge managers with a 15-year strategy for achieving refuge 
purposes and contributing toward the mission of the National Wildlife 
Refuge System (NWRS), consistent with sound principles of fish and 
wildlife management, conservation, legal mandates, and Service 
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 Act.
    Each unit of the NWRS 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 NWRS 
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 and objectives 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 the mission of the NWRS.

Additional Information

    The final CCP may be found at http://www.fws.gov/midwest/planning/GreatLakesIslands/index.html. The final CCP includes detailed 
information about the planning process, the refuges, issues, and 
management alternative selected. The Web site also includes an EA and 
FONSI, prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy 
Act (NEPA) (43 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.). The EA/FONSI includes discussion 
of three alternative refuge management options. The Service's selected 
alternative is reflected in the final CCP. The selected alternative 
would provide for the growth of the island refuges by up to 14,133 
additional acres, and more opportunities for compatible recreational 
use. A detailed description of objectives and actions included in this 
selected alternative is found in chapter 4 of the final CCP.

Christopher P. Jensen,
Acting Regional Director, Midwest Region, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
[FR Doc. 2013-05900 Filed 3-13-13; 8:45 am]