The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program (WSFR) is seeking public comment on a Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) regarding the Wyoming Game and Fish Department’s (WGFD) proposed disposal of Teton Wildlife Habitat Management Area (WHMA) in Teton County, Wyoming. Funding for the project administered by the WSFR Program constitutes a Federal action subject to the provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as amended.
The Teton Wildlife Habitat Management Area is located approximately 10 miles northeast of Jackson and provides quality winter range for elk and bison. There is currently no vehicular access to the WHMA, but it is accessible by foot from the National Elk Refuge which lies directly to the west and the National Forest which lies to the east, which makes it difficult to manage by WGFD. The Service has received notice from WGFD proposing the disposal of Teton WHMA.
The Teton WHMA property was purchased in 1965 by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service with WSFR Grant Funds for wildlife habitat purposes, and this use is also the intended use of the buyer, the United States Forest Service (USFS). This transfer will not result in cumulative loss of wildlife resources or public hunting on the property.
The Draft EA prepared by the Service and WGFD analyzes the environmental effects of the disposal and sale to USFS and provides another opportunity for all interested stakeholders to review and comment on the proposed disposal. In the Draft EA, the Service concluded that the proposed disposal would not have impacts to wetlands, floodplains, or farmland, would not affect historical and cultural resources, would not have any effect on threatened, endangered or candidate species, and would not have any effect on the vegetation in the area or on local fish and wildlife or their habitats since the property will be managed by USFS with the same practices as it was by WGFD.
Public comments will be accepted for a 30-day period which ends November 12, 2023. Copies of the Draft EA and Appendices, which include details of the proposed action and the alternatives considered, are available online by clicking on the title of the document at https://fws.gov/media/draft-environmental-assessment-ea-teton-wildlife-habitat-management-area-whma-disposal-0. Those without internet access may request copies by calling the Services’ Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program at 303-236-8165. Comments will be accepted until November 12, 2023, and can be sent by email to: Kayla Barrett at email@example.com or via mail to: Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, P.O. Box 25486, Denver, CO, 80225.
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