Proposed Designation of Critical Habitat for Eleutherodactylus cooki (guajón or Puerto Rican demon) Peer Review Plan
About the Document
Title: Proposed Designation of Critical Habitat for Eleutherodactylus cooki (guajón or Puerto Rican demon)
Purpose: On October 5, 2006, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service published a proposed rule designating critical habitat for the threatened guajón (Eleutherodactylus cooki), a frog endemic to Puerto Rico (71 FR 58953). The Service is proposing the designation of approximately 217.2 acres (ac) (88 hectares (ha)) in the municipalities of Humacao, Las Piedras, Maunabo, Patillas, and Yabucoa, Puerto Rico, as critical habitat.
About the Peer Review Process
Type of Review: Influential
Date of Peer Review: Peer review occurred between October 5, 2006 and December 5, 2006.
Estimated Dissemination Date of the Final Rulemaking Document: October 1, 2007.
Process: The Service submitted letters requesting peer review of the proposed rule to eight independent scientific reviewers with knowledge and expertise with the guajón and its habitat. The Service also made formal requests for peer review to the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources and the U.S. Forest Service. We welcomed input on any aspect of the proposed rule, but were particularly interested in comments on the background, primary constituent elements, methods, criteria, and unit descriptions sections.
Two of the ten peer reviewers were able to review the proposed rule and provide comments. The Service will use the information received from the peer review, as appropriate, in the final designation of critical habitat for the guajón.
About Public Participation
Public comments on the proposed rule were sought with a Federal Register announcement published on October 5, 2006. The Service distributed the press release of this announcement to interested parties and the media. This comment period ended December 4, 2006.
A second comment period will open for 30 days following the announcement of the availability of the economic analysis in the Federal Register. This comment period is expected in May 2007 and will include the proposed rule as well.
The Service will publish a notice in the Federal Register regarding the decision on the designation of critical habitat for the guajón, including a summary of the results of the peer review. This peer review plan is made available on this website to allow the public to monitor our compliance with the Offices of Management and Budget’s Final Information Quality Bulletin for Peer Review.
Jorge E. Saliva, Ph.D., U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Boquerón Field Office, 787-851-7297, extension 224.