As fish-eating birds, cormorant predation of fish occurs not only at aquaculture facilities, but also in private recreational ponds and large aquatic ecosystems. Another State agency noted that the renewal of subpermittee authority would be conditional on timely and accurate reporting, and recommended that steps be taken to ensure data collection is timely, accurate, and complete by all persons authorized to take cormorants (offering a comparison to the Resident Canada Goose Nest and Egg Depredation Order under 50 CFR 21.50 (OMB Control No. Atlantic and Mississippi Flyways double-crested cormorant management plan. One State agency also noted a concern for how Flyways would fund and provide resources for additional monitoring and reporting of cormorant populations and lethal take, as much of their funding comes from State budgets. To adequately track take under any new depredation order, whether that order be the vacated orders, or those analyzed in the DEIS, the Service needs to develop a mechanism that allows take to be tracked in real time, such as the Canada Goose Registration database (50 CFR 21.50). States and Tribes may designate subpermittees who must operate under the conditions of the permit. Therefore, from October 2003 through May 2016, the Service authorized the take of cormorants pursuant to the two depredation orders (which covered certain States), through the issuance of depredation permits for activities in States not addressed in the two depredation orders, and through the issuance of scientific collecting permits (50 CFR 21.23). In accordance with E.O. A detailed description of the nonlethal methods (i.e., active hazing, passive hazing, habitat management, and changes in management practices) you have and/or will implement and how activities will address one or more of the issues specified above in this paragraph (1); c. The requested annual take of double-crested cormorants by life-stage, including eggs and nests; d. A description of long-term plans to eliminate or significantly reduce continued need to take double-crested cormorants; e. A statement indicating that the State or Tribe will inform and brief all employees and subpermittees of the requirements of these regulations and permit conditions; f. A list of all subpermittees who may conduct activities under the Special Double-Crested Cormorant Permit, including their names, addresses, and telephone numbers; and. Commenters further stated that the size of some hatcheries makes other methods difficult or too expensive to implement. The Service will not identify specific training requirements necessary to become a subpermittee. As the Federal regulatory wildlife agency, the U.S. Therefore, this action is not a significant energy action. Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA; 5 U.S.C. Step 4. Please reference OMB Control Number 1018-0175 in the subject line of your comments. As cormorant abundance increases, and even at current levels, the issuance of individual depredation permits to address conflicts is becoming increasingly time-consuming and lengthy in some cases. The .gov means it’s official. FWS-HQ-MB-2019-0103. If a State or Tribe must enter private property to access State and Tribal lands or waters where take is approved in their permit, the State or Tribe must obtain authorization from the private property owner, and require that the private property owner or occupant provide free and unrestricted access. Runge, M.C., J.R. Sauer, M.L. One individual commented with concern that States may take the majority of the allocated take within a cormorant subpopulation's allowable take threshold within the PTL. In May 2016, these depredation orders were vacated by the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. documents in the last year, by the Homeland Security Department Contact the USFWS Migratory Bird permitting office at (413) 253-8200 or visit the USFWS websitettp://www.fws.gov/permits/overview/overview.html to at h rviewe the requirements for kepinge waterfowl and non-waterfowl game birds. 703-712), as amended, which implements conventions with Great Britain (for Canada), Mexico, Japan, and Russia. Send your completed application forms to your Regional Migratory Bird Permit Office. 1503 & 1507. Entities requested that the Service provide an outline of a cormorant population monitoring regime as a foundation for current consideration by stakeholders and as the basis for stakeholder meetings with the Service following the publication of the record of decision. (7) The name and telephone number of the individual in your agency who will oversee the double-crested cormorant management activities authorized under the permit. To apply for a new master banding permit, a completed bird banding permit application form must be submitted to the BBL Permits Office. (2) When may a State or Tribe conduct management and control activities? Those States and Tribes interested in obtaining the new permit would likely have staff and resources in place with dedicated duties falling within the scope of conflicts associated with cormorants. This error was propagated in estimating PTL. The need to ensure adequate monitoring and reporting to manage take while considering the limited State resources was cited by some State agencies as well. However, levels of take for each population could differ based on their current abundances, population biology, and population-specific management objectives. Yet another State agency also requested that the Service provide States seeking permits with a guide or Best Management Practices on nonlethal methods of resource protection. It is in these situations where the Service anticipates lethal removal of cormorants would be warranted. This table of contents is a navigational tool, processed from the As we gain experience with this program, the Service could consider permits of longer duration, but additional NEPA analyses may be required for any additional rulemaking procedures or amendments. Pacific Flyway Plan: A framework for the management of double-crested cormorant depredation on fish resources in the Pacific Flyway. USGS. 8. Ziolkowski, Jr., K.L. The Service reserves the authority to immediately suspend or revoke any permit if the Service finds that the terms and conditions set forth in the permit have not been adhered to, as specified in 50 CFR 13.27 and 13.28. The Department of the Interior's policy is, whenever possible, to afford the public an opportunity to participate in the rulemaking process. Regarding the comment suggesting that some landowners may unlawfully take cormorants if they do not receive authorization to do so from the Service, we recognize that this activity may occur, but we can neither prevent unlawful activity nor predict where and when unlawful activity would occur in such cases. The reversal did not result in any errors in estimating PTL. (4) Designation of Subpermittees: States and Tribes may designate subpermittees who must operate under the conditions of the permit. You may also use birds you possess under an educational permit to foster juveniles. Actions may occur only when cormorants are committing or are about to commit depredations at Tribal- and State-owned or operated aquaculture facilities (including hatcheries); to alleviate impacts to health and human safety; reduce impacts to threatened and endangered species (as listed under the ESA or identified in State- or Tribal-specific legislation as threatened or endangered) or those listed as Species of Greatest Conservation Need in State Wildlife Action Plans; and to prevent damage to State- or Tribal-owned property and assets. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) located within the Department of the Interior, issues permits under various wildlife laws and treaties, including the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. The new permit coupled with the continued use of individual depredation permits for commercial aquaculture producers would provide the accountability and flexibility to manage cormorants while ensuring populations are managed sustainably and take is authorized in an equitable fashion across multiple conflicts. Federal agencies may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. This permit would provide State and Tribal fish and wildlife agencies flexibility within predefined guidelines to address conflicts caused by cormorants within their jurisdictions. Zimmerman, G.S., B.A. Find this particular information collection by selecting “Currently under 30-day Review—Open for Public Comments” or by using the search function. The authority to take double-crested cormorants conferred by the permit is given to the State or Tribal fish and wildlife agency, and those agencies may designate permittees that the Service approves on the application for the permit. The median amount of allowable take resulting from the analysis was 166,800 cormorants annually. documents in the last year, by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration documents in the last year, 992 It protects over 1,000 species of migratory birds across the United States and makes it illegal to take, possess, import, export, transport, sell, purchase, barter or offer for sale, purchase or barter, any migratory bird (or part of one), or a migratory bird nest or egg, without a valid permit. One State agency requested that the Service provide States seeking permits with a guide or Best Management Practices on nonlethal methods of resource protection. This repetition of headings to form internal navigation links Another State agency recommended that the Service develop and provide States with sampling protocols to assist with collecting and analyzing fish population data where cormorant control activities occur. Relevant information about this document from Regulations.gov provides additional context. More information and documentation can be found in our NOAA Fisheries Log Number NWR-2013-9562. Permittees are expected to continue working with Wildlife Services for review of management plans and remaining current on best practices. WS provides technical assistance, or information and guidance, to callers with migratory bird conflicts. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) establishes a new permit for State and federally recognized Tribal (hereafter “Tribe” or “Tribal”) fish and wildlife agencies for the management of double-crested cormorants (Phalacrocorax auritus; hereafter “cormorants”). It is not an official legal edition of the Federal Thus, we are certifying that this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small business entities. The Service retains overall authority for the take of double-crested cormorants to ensure that levels of take are consistent with management objectives. 1501 et seq. Agency Response to General Comments Concerns: Individual permits would still be available to address some depredation activities. Supplementary Documents: The Environmental Protection Agency will announce the availability of the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) associated with this rulemaking action. The Service's purpose and need for this action, however, is to provide the flexibility for a State or Tribe to address spatial and temporal complexity of conflicts. Available at: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/​resource/​document/​consultation-remand-operation-federal-columbia-river-power-system. 2012. This page requires Javascript. USFWS. Any State or federally recognized Tribal fish and wildlife agency wishing to obtain a permit must submit an application (FWS Form 3-200-90) to the appropriate Regional Director (see § 13.11(b) of this subchapter) containing the general information and certification required by § 13.12(a) of this subchapter plus the following information: (1) A description of your State's or Tribe's double-crested cormorant conflicts, including physical location(s) and type of conflict specified in paragraph (a) of this section; (2) A detailed description of the nonlethal methods (i.e., active hazing, passive hazing, habitat management, and changes in management practices) you have and/or will implement and how take activities will address one or more of the issues specified in paragraph (a) of this section; (3) The requested annual take of double-crested cormorants by life-stage, including eggs and nests; (4) A description of long-term plans to eliminate or significantly reduce continued need to take double-crested cormorants; (5) A statement indicating that the State or Tribe will inform and brief all employees and subpermittees of the requirements of these regulations and permit conditions; (6) A list of all subpermittees who may conduct activities under the special double-crested cormorant permit, including their names, addresses, and telephone numbers; and. This amount was well below the allowable level resulting from the take analyses included in the EA (82 FR 52936-52937, November 15, 2017). 2. The Service added specific permit conditions for piping plover (Charadrius melodus), interior least tern (Sterna antillarum), and wood stork (Mycteria americana): (1) A buffer zone for wood storks for all activities; (2) a buffer zone for these three birds when discharging firearms; and (3) a buffer zone for these three birds for egg oiling, CO2 asphyxiation, egg destruction, or nest destruction. Under the vacated aquaculture depredation order, aquaculture facilities were required to annually report lethal cormorant control activities. Lastly, the Mississippi and Pacific Flyway Councils also commented that Federal financial support may be needed to manage reporting and monitoring and the ability to administer a cormorant depredation program. Open for Comment, Economic Sanctions & Foreign Assets Control, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Addressing the Threat Posed by Applications and Other Software Developed or Controlled by Chinese Companies. Allocation and Scope of Authorized Take: Several commenters submitted questions pertaining to how the Service would manage overall allocation of authorized take of cormorants. This report will include, but not be limited to: (1) Updated cormorant population status and trends; (2) reported lethal take of Start Printed Page 85548cormorants nationally and by cormorant population; (3) updated PTL analyses based on new or more current population information; (4) the state of the conflicts described in the scope of the rule and an assessment of the need for continued management, as reported by requests for depredation permits (both individually and programmatically by participating States and Tribes); and (5) a conflict-management decision and justification for either continued management or a proposed new management approach, if appropriate and needed. Although the USDA WS program is not a regulatory program, we have a role in some regulatory processes. However, prior to applying for permits to take cormorants, individuals and entities experiencing conflicts with cormorants should attempt nonlethal techniques (e.g., hazing, habitat modification) to alleviate the conflict. Please reference OMB Control Number 1018-0175 in the subject line of your comments. In accordance with Executive Order 13175, “Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments,” and the Department of the Interior's manual at 512 DM 2, we have considered the possible effects of this rule on federally recognized Indian Tribes. The conflicts with these Start Printed Page 85540managed fisheries are increasingly causing concerns with State and Tribal fish and wildlife agencies, particularly those involved with providing recreational fishing opportunities. This form is required for first-time applicants only. attach photocopies of any relevant federal permits you possess or have applied for. 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