AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.
ACTION: Final rule.
SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), are issuing
this final rule to comply with court orders that reinstate the
regulatory protections under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as
amended (ESA), for the gray wolf (Canis lupus) in Wyoming and the
western Great Lakes. Pursuant to the U.S. District Court for the
District of Columbia court order dated September 23, 2014, this rule
reinstates the April 2, 2009 (74 FR 15123), final rule regulating the
gray wolf in the State of Wyoming as a nonessential experimental
population. Gray wolves in Montana, Idaho, the eastern third of
Washington and Oregon, and north-central Utah retain their delisted
status and are not impacted by this final rule. In addition, pursuant
to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia court order
dated December 19, 2014, this rule reinstates the March 9, 1978 (43 FR
9607), final rule as it relates to gray wolves in the western Great
Lakes including endangered status for gray wolves in all of Wisconsin
and Michigan, the eastern half of North Dakota and South Dakota, the
northern half of Iowa, the northern portions of Illinois and Indiana,
and the northwestern portion of Ohio; threatened status for gray wolves
in Minnesota; critical habitat for gray wolves in Minnesota and
Michigan; and the rule promulgated under section 4(d) of the ESA for
gray wolves in Minnesota.
DATES: This action is effective February 20, 2015. The September 23,
2014, court order reinstated the April 2, 2009, final rule designating
the gray wolf in Wyoming as a nonessential experimental population
immediately upon its filing. The court order regarding wolves in the
western Great Lakes had legal effect immediately upon its filing on
December 19, 2014. The Director has further determined, pursuant to 5
U.S.C. 553(d), that the Service has good cause to make this rule
effective upon publication.
ADDRESSES: This final rule is available:
Electronically at http://www.regulations.gov in Docket No.
From U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Mountain-Prairie
Region Office, Ecological Services Division, 134 Union Blvd., Lakewood,
CO 80228; telephone 303-236-7400; or
From U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Midwest Region
Office, 5600 American Blvd. West, Suite 990, Bloomington, MN 55437;
Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may
call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 800-877-8339.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For information on wolves in Wyoming,
contact Mike Jimenez, Northern Rocky Mountains Gray Wolf Recovery
Coordinator, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, P.O. Box 8135, Missoula,
MT 59807; by telephone 307-330-5631. For information on wolves in the
western Great Lakes, contact Laura Ragan, Regional Listing Coordinator,
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 5600 American Blvd. West, Suite 990,
Bloomington, MN 55437; by telephone 612-713-5350. Individuals who are
hearing-impaired or speech-impaired may call the Federal Relay Service
at 800-877-8337 for TTY assistance.