Notice; issuance of permit.
Notice is hereby given that a permit has been issued to Paul E. Nachtigall, Ph.D., Marine Mammal Research Program Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology, P.O. Box 1106, Kailua, Hawaii 96734, to conduct scientific research on cetaceans stranded or in rehabilitation facilities in the U.S.
The permit and related documents are available for review upon written request or by appointment in the following offices: See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Amy Sloan or Kristy Beard, (301) 427-8401.
On May 16, 2011, notice was published in the Federal Register (76 FR 28422) that a request for a permit to conduct research on stranded cetaceans had been submitted by the above-named applicant. The requested permit has been issued under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216), the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), and the regulations governing the taking, importing, and exporting of endangered and threatened species (50 CFR parts 222-226).
The permit authorizes the permit holder to conduct auditory measurements and recordings of stranded and rehabilitating cetaceans to provide insight into the nature of strandings including those that may be caused by man-made sounds. The research techniques may also be used as a medical diagnostic tool to determine the hearing capabilities of stranded cetaceans that may aid in decisions regarding release to the wild. Researchers are authorized to use evoked auditory potential recordings with non-invasive suction cup sensors on up to 15 individuals each of certain species of cetaceans and make passive recordings of the sounds produced by the animals using hydrophones. Research will occur in waters or on beaches in the U.S. and in rehabilitation facilities in the U.S. The permit is valid for five years from the date of issuance.
In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), a final determination has been made that the activity proposed is categorically excluded from the requirement to prepare an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement.
As required by the ESA, issuance of this permit was based on a finding that such permit: (1) Was applied for in good faith; (2) will not operate to the disadvantage of such endangered species; and (3) is consistent with the purposes and policies set forth in section 2 of the ESA.
Documents may be reviewed in the following locations:
Permits, Conservation and Education Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13705, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone (301) 427-8401; fax (301) 713-0376;
Pacific Islands Region, NMFS, 1601 Kapiolani Blvd., Room 1110, Honolulu, HI 96814-4700; phone (808) 944-2200; fax (808) 973-2941;
Southwest Region, NMFS, 501 West Ocean Blvd., Suite 4200, Long Beach, CA 90802-4213; phone (562) 980-4001; fax (562) 980-4018;
Northwest Region, NMFS, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., BIN C15700, Bldg. 1, Seattle, WA 98115-0700; phone (206) 526-6150; fax (206) 526-6426;
Alaska Region, NMFS, P.O. Box 21668, Juneau, AK 99802-1668; phone (907) 586-7221; fax (907) 586-7249;
Southeast Region, NMFS, 263 13th Avenue South, Saint Petersburg, Florida 33701; phone (727) 824-5312; fax (727) 824-5309; and
Northeast Region, NMFS, 55 Great Republic Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930; phone (978) 281-9328; fax (978) 281-9394.
Dated: February 29, 2012.
P. Michael Payne,
Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2012-5428 Filed 3-5-12; 8:45 am]
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