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A northern-long-eared bat with suspected White Nose Syndrome. Photo by Steve Taylor, University of Illinois.

Service reopens comment period on proposal to list the northern long-eared bat as endangered

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is reopening the public comment period on a proposal to list the northern long-eared bat as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).  Comments will be accepted through Dec. 18, 2014.   The Service is reopening the comment period to alert the public to additional information provided by state conservation agencies within the range of the species. The Service will consider this information, and all information received previously, while determining whether the northern long-eared bat warrants listing under the Endangered Species Act.  Reopening of the comment period will allow the public to provide comments on the proposed rule in light of that additional information.  A final decision on the proposal is due on April 2, 2015.

You may submit comments by one of the following methods:

  1. Electronically:  Go to the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.  In the Search box, enter Docket No. FWS–R5–ES–2011–0024, which is the docket number for this  rulemaking.  You may submit a comment by clicking on “Comment Now!”  Please ensure that  you have found the correct rulemaking before submitting your comment.
  2. By hard copy:  Submit by U.S. mail or hand-delivery to:  Public Comments Processing, Attn:  FWS–R5–ES–2011–0024; Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and  Wildlife Service, MS: BPHC; 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803.

All comments will be posted on http://www.regulations.gov.  This generally means we will post any personal information you provide us. If you previously submitted comments or information on the Oct. 2, 2013, proposed rule (78 FR 61046), please do not resubmit them.  We have incorporated them into the public record, and we will consider them fully in our final determination.

To view the information provided by state agencies and other information about the northern long-eared bat, go to http://www.fws.gov/midwest/endangered/mammals/nlba/index.html

In October 2013, the Service proposed to list the northern long-eared bat as an endangered species throughout its range, which includes 38 states and the District of Columbia.  The Service cited the species’ sharp decline due to impacts of a disease, white-nose syndrome, a disease that affects cave-hibernating bats.  On June 3, 2014, the Service announced a six-month extension of the final determination to list the northern long-eared bat as an endangered species and reopened the comment period for 60 days.

Contact

Georgia Parham, USFWS Midwest
812-334-4261 x 1203
Georgia_Parham@fws.gov

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. For more information on our work and the people who can make it happen, visit fws.gov. Connect with the Service on Facebook, follow our tweets, watch the YouTube Channel and download photos from Flickr.

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