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Marine Mammals; File No. 774-1847-01

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.


Notice; receipt of application for amendment.


Notice is hereby given that NMFS Southwest Fisheries Science Center, Antarctic Marine Living Resources Program (Rennie Holt, Ph.D., Principal Investigator), 8604 La Jolla Shores Drive, La Jolla, CA 92037, has requested an amendment to scientific research Permit No. 774-1847.


Written, telefaxed, or e-mail comments must be received on or before February 22, 2007.


The amendment request and related documents are available for review upon written request or by appointment in the following office(s):

Permits, Conservation and Education Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13705, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone (301)713-2289; fax (301)427-2521; and

Southwest Region, NMFS, 501 West Ocean Blvd., Suite 4200, Long Beach, CA 90802-4213; phone (562)980-4001; fax (562)980-4018.

Written comments or requests for a public hearing on this request should be submitted to the Chief, Permits, Conservation and Education Division, F/PR1, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13705, Silver Spring, MD 20910. Those individuals requesting a hearing should set forth the specific reasons why a hearing on this particular amendment request would be appropriate.

Comments may also be submitted by facsimile at (301)427-2521, provided the facsimile is confirmed by hard copy submitted by mail and postmarked no later than the closing date of the comment period.

Comments may also be submitted by e-mail. The mailbox address for providing e-mail comments is Include in the subject line of the e-mail comment the following document identifier: File No. 774-1847-01.

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Kate Swails or Tammy Adams, (301)713-2289.

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The subject amendment to Permit No. 774-1847, issued on September 11, 2006 (71 FR 53423) is requested under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), and the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216).

Permit No. 774-1847 authorizes the permit holder to continue a long-term ecosystem monitoring program of pinniped species in the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica. The applicant is authorized to take up to 710 Antarctic fur seals and 20 leopard seals annually. The animals are captured, measured, weighed, tagged, blood sampled, and have time-depth recorders, VHF transmitters, and platform terminal transmitters attached. A subset of fur seals are given an enema, have a tooth extracted, milk sampled, and are part of a doubly-labeled water study on energetics. A subset of leopard seals are blubber and muscle sampled. The permit authorizes the research-related mortality of up to three Antarctic fur seals (one adult and two pups) and one leopard seal annually.

The permit holder requests authorization to increase research-related mortality to eight Antarctic fur seals (3 adults and 5 pups) and two leopard seals annually. Permit conditions are such that research must be stopped when the mortality level is reached. The requested amendment is intended to allow the continuation of the long-term monitoring studies in the event of greater than anticipated levels of research-related mortality.

Concurrent with the publication of this notice in the Federal Register, NMFS is forwarding copies of this application to the Marine Mammal Commission and its Committee of Scientific Advisors.

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Dated: January 17, 2007.

P. Michael Payne,

Chief, Permits, Conservation and Education Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.

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[FR Doc. E7-944 Filed 1-23-07; 8:45 am]