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Service Reopens Public Comment Period for Proposal to Designate Critical Habitat for Western Yellow-Billed Cuckoo

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) is reopening the public comment period for 60 days for the proposal to designate 546,335 acres of critical habitat for the western distinct population segment of the yellow-billed cuckoo (Coccyzus americanus) in 80 separate units in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Utah and Wyoming.

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Comments Accepted through January 12, 2015

DENVER – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) is reopening the public comment period for 60 days for the proposal to designate 546,335 acres of critical habitat for the western distinct population segment of the yellow-billed cuckoo (Coccyzus americanus) in 80 separate units in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Utah and Wyoming.
On August 14, 2014, the Service announced an initial 60-day comment period on the proposal that closed October 14, 2014. The Service is reopening the public comment period for an additional 60 days to ensure the public has adequate opportunity to submit comments and to ensure that any final decision reflects all of the best science and information available. The Service is also planning to hold a public hearing on the proposal and will announce the date and location when it is finalized.
The Service is seeking information concerning the western yellow-billed cuckoo’s biology and habitat, principal habitat elements and biological features of critical habitat, selection criteria for critical habitat units, and justification for exclusions from critical habitat. The Service also seeks information on the incremental economic effects of the proposed critical habitat designation. To access the proposed rules and a specific outline of information requested by the Service, please go to our webpage: http://www.fws.gov/sacramento/outreach/Public-Advisories/WesternYellow-BilledCuckoo/outreach_PA_Western-Yellow-Billed-Cuckoo.htm.
Comments on the proposed critical habitat rule will be accepted through January 12, 2015. Comments may be submitted online at the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov. The docket number for the proposed rule is FWS–R8–ES–2013-0011. Comments can also be sent by U.S. Mail or Hand Delivery:
Public Comments Processing, Attn:  FWS–ES–R8–2013–0011; Division of Policy and Directives Management;
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; U.S. Fish & Wildlife Headquarters, MS: BPHC, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803.
Members of the public who have already submitted comments during the first 60-day comment period do not need to resubmit their comments. Comments and information provided online or by mail to the Service during the first 60-day comment period are still valid.
The Service listed the western yellow-billed cuckoo as a threatened species on October 3, 2014 and the rule went into effect on November 3, 2014. A final rule to designate critical habitat is expected in 2015.
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