Federal officials are reopening the public comment period on a proposal to protect the bistate sage grouse along the California-Nevada border as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced today.
The proposal includes a special rule that would provide increased flexibility for land management practices that are intended to benefit the sage grouse. The additional 30-day comment period was announced in the Federal Register on Tuesday.
The extra comment period is necessary because the service received new information regarding population trends. Additionally, interagency funding commitments were recently announced for various conservation efforts associated with the bistate action plan. Comments previously submitted need not be resubmitted, as they will be fully considered. The final listing decision will be published on or before April 28, 2015.
The new information and the proposed listing and special 4(d) rule, as well as other information about the Bistate DPS of greater sage grouse, are available at www.fws.gov/nevada/, www.regulations.gov, or through the Nevada Fish and Wildlife Office at 861-6300.
Scientific information regarding these proposals will be accepted until 11:59 p.m., on Sept. 4, and may be submitted by one of the following methods:
■ Electronically, via the Federal eRulemaking Portal, at http://www.regulations.gov. In the Search box, enter FWS-R8-ES-2013-0072, which is the docket number for the rulemaking. Then, in the search panel on the left side of the screen, under the Document Type heading, click on the Proposed Rules link to locate this document. You may submit a comment by clicking on “Comment Now.”
■ Hard copy, via U.S. mail or hand delivery, to: Public Comments Processing, Attn: FWS-R8-ES-2013-0072; Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, MS 2042–PDM; Arlington, VA 22203.