[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 190 (Tuesday, October 1, 2013)]
[Page 60306]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-23733]



Fish and Wildlife Service

[FWS-R3-R-2012-N120; FXRS1265030000-134-FF03R06000]

Big Muddy National Fish and Wildlife Refuge, Authorized Within 
the Twenty Counties That Lie Along the Missouri River From Kansas City 
to St. Louis, MO; Draft Environmental Assessment and Comprehensive 
Conservation Plan

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability; request for comments.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the 
availability of a draft environmental assessment (EA) and comprehensive 
conservation plan (CCP) for Big Muddy National Fish and Wildlife Refuge 
(Refuge, NFWR) for public review and comment. In this draft EA/CCP we 
describe how we propose to manage the refuge for the next 15 years.

DATES: To ensure consideration, we must receive your written comments 
by October 31, 2013. We will hold several open house-style meetings 
during the comment period to receive comments and provide information 
on the draft plan. In addition, we will use special mailings, newspaper 
articles, internet postings, and other media announcements to inform 
people of opportunities for input.

ADDRESSES: Send your comments or requests for more information by any 
one of the following methods:
     Email: r3planning@fws.gov. Include ``Big Muddy Draft EA/
CCP'' in the subject line of the message.
     Fax: Attention: Refuge Manager, 573-876-1839.
     U.S. Mail: Attention: Refuge Manager Tom Bell, Big Muddy 
National Fish and Wildlife Refuge, 4200 New Haven Road, Columbia, MO 
     In-Person Drop Off: You may drop off comments during 
regular business hours at the above address.
    You will find the draft EA/CCP, as well as information about the 
planning process and a summary of the CCP, on the planning Web site: 




    With this notice, we continue the CCP process for Big Muddy 
National Fish and Wildlife Refuge, which we began by publishing a 
notice of intent in the Federal Register (72 FR 27587) on May 16, 2007. 
For more about the initial process and the history of this refuge, see 
that notice.


    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. 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 draft EA/CCP, which includes detailed information about the 
planning process, refuge, issues, and management alternatives 
considered and proposed, may be found at http://www.fws.gov/midwest/planning/bigmuddyccp/index.html.

Public Involvement

    We will give the public an opportunity to provide input at a public 
meeting. You can obtain the schedule from the address or Web site 
listed in this notice (see ADDRESSES). You may also submit comments 
anytime during the comment period.

Public Availability of Comments

    Before including your address, phone number, email 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.

Thomas O. Melius,
Regional Director, Midwest Region, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 2013-23733 Filed 9-30-13; 8:45 am]