[Date Prev][Date Next][Date Index]

GLIN==> US FWS acts on Silver Carp Final Rule



[Federal Register: July 10, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 131)]
[Rules and Regulations]              
[Page 37459-37469]
 From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr10jy07-12]                        

=======================================================================
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
Fish and Wildlife Service
50 CFR Part 16
RIN 1018-AT29

Injurious Wildlife Species; Silver Carp (Hypophthalmichthys
molitrix) and Largescale Silver Carp (Hypophthalmichthys harmandi)

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.
ACTION: Final rule.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service or we) adds all
forms of live silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix), gametes,
viable eggs, and hybrids; and all forms of live largescale silver carp
(Hypophthalmichthys harmandi), gametes, viable eggs, and hybrids to the
list of injurious fish, mollusks, and crustaceans under the Lacey Act.
The best available information indicates that this action is necessary
to protect the interests of human beings, and wildlife and wildlife
resources, from the purposeful or accidental introduction, and
subsequent establishment, of silver carp and largescale silver carp
populations in ecosystems of the United States. Live silver carp and
largescale silver carp, gametes, viable eggs, and hybrids can be

[[Page 37460]]

imported only by permit for scientific, medical, educational, or
zoological purposes, or without a permit by Federal agencies solely for
their own use; permits will also be required for the interstate
transportation of live silver or largescale silver carp, gametes,
viable eggs, or hybrids currently within the United States. Interstate
transportation permits may be issued for scientific, medical,
educational, or zoological purposes.

DATES: This rule is effective August 9, 2007.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kari Duncan, Chief, Branch of Invasive
Species at (703) 358-2464 or <A HREF="mailto:kari_duncan@fws.gov";>kari_duncan@fws.gov</A>.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    In October 2002, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service or we)
received a petition signed by 25 members of Congress representing the
Great Lakes region to add silver, bighead, and black carp to the list
of injurious wildlife under the Lacey Act (18 U.S.C. 42). A follow-up
letter to the original petition had seven additional Legislator
signatures that supported the petition.

Summary of Previous Actions

    The Service published a Federal Register notice of inquiry on
silver carp (68 FR 43482-43483, July 23, 2003), and provided a 60-day
public comment period. We received 31 comments in total, but 12 of
these did not address the issues raised in the notice of inquiry. We
considered the information provided in the 19 relevant comments.
    Most of the comments supported the addition of silver carp to the
list of injurious wildlife, but provided no additional information. One
commenter noted that silver carp have no commercial value, but was
concerned that listing would hinder control and management. One
commenter asked us to delay listing until a risk assessment could be
completed. Biological synopses and risk assessments were completed for
silver and largescale silver carp. A proposed rule to add all forms of
live silver and largescale silver carp to the list of injurious fishes
under the Lacey Act was published on September 5, 2006 (71 FR 52305);
the comment period on the proposed rule closed on November 6, 2006. We
received 97 comments on the proposed rule. In total, the Service
received 116 pertinent letters during the public comment periods. Most
of the 116 letters received urged the Service to list silver and
largescale silver carp as injurious wildlife, but provided no
additional information. Similar comments were grouped into issues;
these issues and our responses to each are presented below.

Comments Received on the Proposed Rule

    Issue: One commenter stated that there is currently no market for
silver carp; very few silver carp are in culture (for maintenance of
stocks) or use. However, there is great potential for silver carp use
in aquaculture within Arkansas and Mississippi by utilizing an enclosed
system that would prevent escape of silver carp. The potential for
silver carp use in the United States has not been fully realized.
    Response: This rule will prohibit the importation and interstate
transport of live silver carp, gametes, viable eggs, and hybrids, which
will in no way affect the use of silver carp in States where they
already exist.
    Issue: One aquaculture industry group stated that there is no
meaningful role of silver carp in cleaning ponds and tanks for southern
U.S. aquaculture producers and that there would be little or no
economic impact associated with this rule. However, they also noted
that the natural invasion of silver carp will continue into waters of
other States, whether the proposed rule is enacted or not. The comment
stated that, given the existing conditions and circumstances of silver
carp, listing these species will do little or nothing to address the
problems stated in the proposed rule. Listing would not address the
real problem of preventing the spread of naturally occurring
populations; States already have the authority to address these
problems, so Federal intervention does not seem necessary.
    Response: The Service agrees that this rulemaking will not address
the ecological impacts of silver carp already in the environment. This
rulemaking is intended to prevent or delay the introduction of silver
carp into waterbodies where they do not currently exist, which will
help protect native species. Many States have requested Federal
intervention because the States only have authority to regulate
possession within State boundaries.
    Issue: A few commenters stated that they did not understand why
nine questions were included in the proposed rule. These commenters
believe that asking those questions has delayed the rulemaking. In
addition, they expressed concern with the length of time it takes to
add species to the list of injurious wildlife.
    Response: Nine questions were included in the proposed rule in
order to ascertain if there were any additional data pertinent to the
analyses required by various laws and executive orders relating to the
Federal rulemaking process. Inclusion of these nine questions has in no
way delayed the process of adding silver and largescale silver carp to
the list of injurious wildlife.
    Issue: One commenter stated that the proposed rule contained
repetition of unnecessary facts and that many assumptions were made
without scientific research.
    Response: The Service has reviewed the proposed rule to reduce
repetition in the final rule. Research has been conducted on silver
carp impacts and due to the similarities between silver carp and
largescale silver carp, we feel that reasonable extrapolations of
potential impacts have been made.
    Issue: A few commenters stated that penalties for injurious
wildlife should be increased.
    Response: Penalties for violations of the Lacey Act are set by
Congress.

Peer Review

    We asked scientists who have knowledge of fisheries biology or
invasive species to provide peer review of the proposed rule during the
public comment period. The peer reviewers had a few technical comments
and suggestions; however, all concluded that the data and analyses used
in the proposed rule were appropriate and the conclusions drawn were
clear and concise. Additionally, peer reviewers provided additional
documentation of potential impacts to native species. This information
has been incorporated into the final rule.

Description of the Final Rule

    The regulations contained in 50 CFR part 16 implement the Lacey Act
(18 U.S.C. 42) as amended. Under the terms of the injurious wildlife
provisions of the Lacey Act, the Secretary of the Interior is
authorized to prohibit the importation and interstate transportation of
species designated by the Secretary as injurious. Injurious wildlife
are those species, offspring, and eggs that are injurious to wildlife
or wildlife resources, to human beings, or to the interests of
forestry, horticulture, or agriculture of the United States. Wild
mammals, wild birds, fish, mollusks, crustaceans, amphibians, and
reptiles are the only organisms that can be added to the injurious
wildlife list. The lists of injurious wildlife are at 50 CFR 16.11-16.15.
    By adding all forms of live silver carp and largescale silver carp,
including hybrids, to the list of injurious wildlife,

[[Page 37461]]

their importation into, or transportation between, States, the District
of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or any territory or
possession of the United States by any means whatsoever is prohibited,
except by permit for zoological, educational, medical, or scientific
purposes (in accordance with permit regulations at 50 CFR 16.22), or by
Federal agencies without a permit solely for their own use. Federal
agencies who wish to import silver carp or largescale silver carp for
their own use must file a written declaration with the District
Director of Customs and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Inspector at
the port of entry. No live silver carp or largescale silver carp,
progeny thereof, viable eggs, or hybrids imported or transported under
permit may be sold, donated, traded, loaned, or transferred to any
other person or institution unless such person or institution has a
permit issued by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The interstate
transportation of any live silver carp or largescale silver carp,
gametes, viable eggs, or hybrids currently held in the United States
for any purpose is prohibited without a permit. Any regulation
pertaining to the possession or use of silver carp and largescale silver
carp within States continues to be the responsibility of each State.

Biology

    The commonly named silver carp belongs to the family Cyprinidae,
with the species name of Hypophthalmichthys molitrix. Silver carp are
native to Asia (China and Eastern Siberia), from about 54 [deg]N
southward to 21 [deg]N. Silver carp are primarily phytoplanktivores,
but are highly opportunistic, eating phytoplankton, zooplankton,
bacteria, and detritus. Silver carp are well established throughout much
of the Mississippi River Basin, and its range is expanding in that basin.
    The commonly named largescale silver carp (or southern silver carp
or Vietnamese carp) also belongs to the family Cyprinidae, with the
species name of Hypophthalmichthys harmandi. Largescale silver carp are
native to fresh waters of northern Hainan Island, China, and the Red
(Hong Ha) River of northern Vietnam from subtropical to tropical (21-22
[deg]N). The species does not occur naturally on the Chinese mainland.
Largescale silver carp feed on phytoplankton and prefer slow-moving,
plankton-rich open waters. There is no indication that this species has
been imported into or introduced into the open waters of United States.
    For additional information on the biology, use, history and
pathways of introduction into the United States for silver and
largescale silver carp, please refer to the proposed rule published in
the Federal Register on September 5, 2006 (71 FR 52305).

Factors That Contribute to Injuriousness for Silver Carp

Introduction and Spread

    The major pathway for introduction of silver carp in the United
States was importation for biological control of plankton in
aquaculture ponds and sewage lagoons. The pathway that led to the
presence of this species in open waters of the United States was likely
escape from these facilities. Subsequent escapes and the mixture of
silver carp with other species that were stocked likely contributed to
the expansion of the species' range, along with natural reproduction.
    Other probable pathways that may aid the spread of existing
populations of silver carp include connected waterways, contamination
of pond-grown baitfishes with silver carp, ballast water release,
release or escape from livehaulers that support commercial fisheries,
or spread by commercial fishers themselves.
    Silver carp are difficult to handle and transport because of their
propensity to jump when disturbed. As a result, there has been very
little culture of silver carp in the United States since 1985, and they
are not being cultured commercially at this time. However, should
culture of silver carp resume, a potential pathway for introduction
would be escape or release from a facility or during the transport and
sale of live fish in retail markets.
    Silver carp are likely to be spread when juveniles are collected by
cast net for use as live baitfish. Silver carp juveniles are very
similar in appearance to shad, and anglers sometimes catch young silver
carp and use them as live bait. Release of live bait has been
identified as a source for more than 100 introductions of fishes beyond
their natural range in the United States. Although adult and market-
sized silver carp are fragile and do not survive collection and
transport well, fingerling silver carp are less susceptible to
mortality due to handling stress.
    Silver carp, caught as bycatch, may be sold as fillets or to live
fish markets. Another potential pathway for further introductions is
the intentional release of silver carp through animal rights activism
or prayer release (the ceremonial release of a fish in honor of the one
that will be eaten).
    Silver carp have survived, have become established in river
systems, and have been reproducing in natural waters of the United
States since at least 1995. Because silver carp can occupy lakes, there
is serious concern that this species will further expand its range
beyond riverine environments and into lake environments including the
Great Lakes. If introduced, it is highly likely that silver carp will
establish reproducing populations in other major river systems, such as
the Potomac/Chesapeake, Columbia, and Sacramento/San Joaquin Delta. In
their native range, juveniles and adults are also found in lakes,
reservoirs, and canals where they grow well, but probably cannot spawn
and recruit without access to an appropriate riverine habitat.

Hybrids

    Hybridization of silver carp with native fishes is not known to be
possible, but silver carp are known to hybridize and produce viable
offspring with both bighead carp (H. nobilis), a nonnative species also
present in the Mississippi River basin, and largescale silver carp, a
species not yet known to be in the United States. Bighead carp x silver
carp and the reciprocal cross are fertile. Bighead carp x silver carp
are common in parts of the United States. The presence of large numbers
of wild-spawned hybrids implies that bighead and silver carp often
spawn in the same place at the same time in United States waters.
Silver carp x bighead hybrids adversely impact food availability for
native species due to the size they attain and the amount of food they
eat. Hybrids with largescale silver carp would likely adversely affect
food availability for native species as well.
    Hybridization may also be possible with grass carp, but
hybridization with common carp (Cyprinus carpio) is unlikely because
the spawning locations and behaviors of the two genera are so different.

Potential Effects on Native Species

    Silver carps' food consumption rate is high, but widely variable.
Fry at the smallest size class consumed up to 140% of their body weight
daily; 63 mg fingerlings consumed just more than 30% and 70-166 mg
fingerlings consumed 63% of their body weight. Adult silver carp have
been shown to consume 8.8 kilograms (kg) of food per year, with 90% of
the consumption occurring during the three warmest months of the year.
    Silver carp are quite tolerant of broad water temperatures from 4
[deg]C to 40 [deg]C. Silver carp can grow quickly (20 to 30

[[Page 37462]]

kg in 5 to 8 years), and large adults can reach over 1.2 meters in
length and 50 kg in weight. Silver carp are difficult to age, but have
been reported to live 15-20+ years.
    The reproductive potential of silver carp is high and increases
with body size. It has been estimated that silver carp weighing 3.18 to
12.1 kg can produce 145,000-5,400,000 eggs. Silver carp mature anywhere
from 3-8 years, and males usually mature one year earlier than females.
The same female may spawn twice during one growing season. Silver carp
exhibit a prolonged spawning period, into late summer or early fall, in
the United States.
    Due to the large size, fast growth rate, high food consumption rate
and high reproductive potential of silver carp, competition for food
and habitat with native planktivorous fishes and with post-larvae and
early juveniles of most native fishes is likely high. Since nearly all
larvae and juvenile fishes are planktivorous and based on other
demonstrated impacts, it is highly likely that silver carp are
adversely affecting many native fishes in the Mississippi River Basin,
particularly in waters where food may become limited, though long-term
studies have not yet been conducted. Affected native species include
paddlefish (Polyodon spathula), bigmouth buffalo (Ictiobus
cyprinellus), gizzard shad (Dorosoma cepedianum), emerald shiner
(Notropis atherinoides), and threadfin shad (Dorosoma petenens). It is
highly likely silver carp would adversely affect fishes in the Great
Lakes basin or other watersheds, if they establish.
    Paddlefish, native to the Mississippi River Basin and Gulf of
Mexico river drainages from east Texas to Alabama, is a large river
fish that has declined in abundance in recent years because of
overharvest and habitat alteration. Like the silver carp, paddlefish
uses plankton as its primary food source, so silver carp or hybrids
would directly compete with paddlefish for food throughout most of the
paddlefish's range. Other fishes, such as buffalos or shads, use both
plankton and aquatic invertebrates as food. While these fishes are
currently more common than paddlefish, they may be at risk if silver
carp, silver x largescale silver carp hybrids, or silver x bighead
hybrids establish and reduce plankton. Gizzard shad are a primary
forage base for predacious fishes and important to the ecology of
Midwestern rivers; thus, the likely competition with silver carp in
these waters is cause for concern.
    Because silver carp are likely to negatively affect important
planktivorous forage fishes such as the gizzard shad and emerald
shiner, scientists have indicated that fishes and birds that prey on
these species would likely also be negatively affected. Adult silver
carp are too large to be preyed on by almost any native predator. Young
silver carp have likely been incorporated into the diets of piscivorous
birds and fishes to some degree, but the extent of this predation is
not known. Ecosystem balance is likely to be modified if silver carp
populations become large enough to dominate other planktivorous fish
species. The most likely negative effect would be an alteration of fish
community structure through competition for food.
    Silver carp have been shown to have major effects on nutrient
cycling and have had adverse effects on primary productivity, which
could alter food webs and ultimately alter nutrient and energy cycling
in aquatic communities. There is evidence of nutrient overloading in
waters where silver carp have been introduced. Excrement from silver
carp has been found to increase levels of certain nutrients, some which
cannot be consumed by other animals in the digested form or may be
harmful, which has led to a net decrease in food resources available in
several studies. Recent studies on the effects of silver carp on toxin-
producing blue-green algae indicate that certain species of blue-green
algae are often controlled by silver carp, but that other species are
often enhanced, particularly those like Microcystis aeruginosa that
have a mucosal covering that inhibits digestion by silver carp. These
organisms can pass alive through the digestive tract and, in the
process, acquire nutrients that can later be used for growth and cell
division. Additionally, M. aeruginosa has been shown to produce more
toxins in the presence of filter feeding fishes, especially silver
carp. Once established, these fish are likely to cause shifts in the
food web and compete with other zooplanktivorous fishes and fish larvae
for food. Changes in the community structure towards smaller size
plankton may have negative effects on fishes native to the United
States that subsist on larger zooplankton.
    Adverse effects of silver carp on some threatened and endangered
freshwater mussels and fishes are likely to be moderate to high. There
are currently 116 fishes and 70 mussels on the Federal List of
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. Because silver carp have the same
habitat requirements as approximately 40 fishes and 25 mussels
currently on the endangered or threatened species list, these listed
species will likely be impacted by competition for food and habitat by
the introduction and establishment of silver carp.
    Habitat requirements, springs and small streams, of the remaining
listed fishes and mussels would probably preclude any detectable
effects as it is unlikely that silver carp could survive in such small
bodies of water.
    Adverse effects of established populations of silver carp on
endangered and threatened fishes would most likely be through direct
competition for food resources, particularly phytoplankton and, to a
lesser extent, zooplankton, in the water column during the larval
stage. Potential for direct predation and injury of drifting fertilized
eggs and larvae of native fishes also exists. The fact that silver carp
can become extremely abundant and reach a very large size (> 1 m in
length) in rivers, lakes, and reservoirs increases the probability of a
negative impact on aquatic ecosystems they invade as high densities of
silver carp decrease food availability for native species. Mussels are
also filter feeders but live partly or totally buried in the substrate;
their association with the benthic environment means that they would be
less likely to be affected by filter-feeding silver carp. Nevertheless,
changes in the fish community structure caused by silver carp are
likely to have adverse effects on abundance and availability of host
fishes required for mussel reproduction, which may result in a decline
of native mussels.

Habitat Degradation

    There is low risk of silver carp causing direct habitat degradation
or destruction, although the presence of silver carp is sometimes
associated with decreased water clarity, which may also impact benthic
chemistry and community structure. The effect of these fishes on
nutrients, sediment re-suspension (which can stimulate plankton
growth), and decreasing dissolved oxygen varies. Excrement from silver
carp, which can equal their body weight in 10 days, has organically
enriched lake bottoms and altered the benthic macroinvertebrate
community structure.
    However, due to the impacts listed above, it is highly likely that
silver carp would have adverse effects on designated critical habitats
of threatened and endangered species. There are currently 60 species of
fishes and 18 mussels with designated critical habitat. Of those, at
least 26 inhabit lakes or reaches of streams large enough to support
silver carp. Therefore, dense populations of silver carp are likely to
affect the critical habitats upon which

[[Page 37463]]

the threatened and endangered species depend.

Potential Pathogens

    Many species of parasites and bacterial diseases occur in silver
carp. The only viral disease agent of silver carp found in the
literature is Rhabdovirus carpio, the causative agent for spring
viraemia of carp (SVC), a systemic, acute, and highly contagious
infection that is known to cause mortality in native fishes. Silver
carp are susceptible to many diseases caused by parasitic protozoans
and trematodes, and several crustacean parasites, such as anchor worm
(Lernaea bhadraensis), have also been reported from silver carp.
    Although there have been studies of disease-causing agents of
silver carp, none have investigated the transfer of these pathogens
from silver carp to native fishes of the United States. However, two
parasites known to infect silver carp are a threat to native North
American fishes, including cyprinids: The gill-damaging Lernaea
cyprinacea, known as anchorworm (this parasite is also known to affect
salmonids and eels), and Bothriocephalus acheilognathi, known as Asian
carp tapeworm. The Asian carp tapeworm, initially introduced into U.S.
waters from grass carp, has infected native threatened and endangered
fishes (including the yaqui chub (Gila purpurea), beautiful shiner,
(Cyprinella formosa), yaqui topminnow (Poeciliopsis occidentalis
sonoriensis), colorado pikeminnow (Ptychocheilus lucius), and humpback
chub (G. cypha)) and fishes of concern such as the roundtail chub (G.
robusta), a candidate for Federal listing as a threatened or endangered
fish and listed as endangered by Colorado, in five States. When
infected baitfish were released into Lake Mead, the tapeworm was spread
to two endangered fishes, virgin spinedace (Lepidomeda mollispinis) and
woundfin minnow (Plagopterus argentissimus) in Utah and Nevada.
Approximately 90% of large juvenile and adult humpback chubs in the
Little Colorado River are infected with this cestode. The Asian carp
tapeworm has been reported from more than 40 other cyprinid fishes and
fishes of other orders. Silver carp are hosts of this parasite, but
suffer minimal adverse effects from it. As hosts of this tapeworm,
silver carp have the potential to spread it to native fishes, beyond
the five States where it has already been found (Arizona, Colorado,
Nevada, New Mexico, and Utah). This is a parasite that erodes mucus
membranes and intestinal tissues, often leading to death of the host.
The most probable pathway of introduction was by the release of
infected baitfishes. As the introduced range of silver carp grows in
U.S. waters, silver carp will likely spread the parasite and a number
of native fishes, particularly, but not limited to, cyprinids, percids,
and centrarchids, will likely become hosts of the Asian carp tapeworm.
    Some disease-causing agents harbored by silver carp pose health
risks to humans. The psychotropic pathogen Listeria monocytogenes has
been found in market and fish farm samples of silver carp. Clostridium
botulinum was found in 1.1% of fresh and smoked samples of silver carp
from the Mazandaran Province in Iran. The toxigenic fungi Aspergillus
flavus, Alternaria, Penicillium, and Fusarium were found from silver
carp and from pond water in which they were raised at a fish farm in
northern Iran. In addition, live Salmonella spp. can be found in silver
carp for at least 14 days after transfer to clean water, and silver
carp, therefore, should be considered as a potential carrier for
Salmonella (S. typhimumium).

Impacts to Humans

    Silver carp in the United States cause substantial impacts to the
health and welfare of human beings who use waterways infested with
silver carp. There are numerous reports of injuries to humans and
damage to boats and boating equipment because of the jumping habits of
silver carp in the vicinity of moving motorized watercraft. Some
reported injuries include cuts from fins, black eyes, broken bones,
back injuries, and concussions. Silver carp also cause property damage
including broken radios, depth finders, fishing equipment, and
antennae. Some vessels have been retrofitted with a Plexiglas pilot's
cab as protection against jumping silver carp.

Factors That Reduce or Remove Injuriousness for Silver Carp

Detection and Response

    If silver carp were introduced or spread into new U.S. waters, it
is unlikely that the introduction would be discovered until the numbers
were high enough to impact wildlife and wildlife resources. Widespread
surveys of waterways are not conducted to establish species' presence
lists. Delay in discovery would limit the ability and effectiveness to
rapidly respond to the introduction and prevent establishment of new
populations. It is unlikely that silver carp could be eradicated from
U.S. waterways unless they are found in unconnected waterbodies.

Potential Control

    The ability to control spread of established populations depends on
their access to open waterways and riverine habitat to spawn. Barriers
may help control the spread of silver carp from the Mississippi River
basin into the Great Lakes or other waterbodies, but barriers could
also negatively affect migratory native fishes. There are still several
pathways by which silver carp from established populations in the
Mississippi River Basin might be moved to new waterbodies, such as the
Potomac River or Columbia River, and become established.
    Due to the extensive established range of silver carp in the
Mississippi River Basin, conventional control methods are not feasible
to reduce established populations. Massive fishing efforts utilizing
netting and electrofishing may be effective in reducing populations,
but many non-target fish species would also be killed. Justifying the
expense of such efforts would require a large commercial demand, which
does not currently exist, nor is likely given the jumping behavior of
silver carp that makes fishing difficult. Selective removal of silver
carp is possible given their location in the water column, but water
trawling could also remove other non-target fish such as paddlefish.
    The large and growing range of silver carp in U.S. waterways makes
chemical control of established populations highly unlikely, both
physically and fiscally. Use of chemical treatments, such as rotenone,
would be expensive, only locally effective, and would negatively affect
all fishes and invertebrates, not just the target carp. At present,
there is no method known to substantially reduce established
populations of silver carp. Eradication is not possible with presently
available technology.

Recovery of Disturbed Sites

    Because the ability to eradicate this species is low, there is
little likelihood for rehabilitation or recovery of ecosystems
disturbed by this species. Additionally infested waterways allow
connections to unpopulated sites. Utilizing sterile silver carp would
do little to reduce or remove injuriousness as the present range of
establishment in the Mississippi River Basin is too extensive for this
option to reduce current silver carp populations in this area. The use
of daughterless fish technology (introducing sterile males to produce
unviable eggs) may reduce populations, but this would take many

[[Page 37464]]

years before it would reduce numbers of fish where they currently
exist. Research is being conducted on the use of pheromones to control
carp, but it is years from demonstrating effectiveness in natural
waters and mass production. These technologies might be useful to
prevent establishment of silver carp in new areas.

Potential Pathogens

    Silver carp are host to many parasites and bacterial diseases that
are or could be a threat to native North American fishes. If silver
carp transfer pathogens to native fish, the ability and effectiveness
to control these transfers would be very low because silver carp and
native fishes share the same habitat.

Potential Ecological Benefits for Introduction

    The ability of silver carp to effectively filter particles and
reliance on phytoplankton for much of its diet led to research into
their effectiveness as a biological control agent for phytoplankton in
wastewater systems and other ponds. There is conflicting data
concerning the benefit of using silver carp to control excess
nutrients. Regardless of their effect on increasing or decreasing
phytoplankton and zooplankton abundance, studies have consistently
shown that filter feeding by silver carp shifts the species composition
of these communities to smaller species. Silver carp have been observed
to cause nuisance algal blooms through a trophic cascade. Scientists
believe that the removal of larger zooplankton and phytoplankton by
foraging silver carp may result in stimulating growth of smaller species.
Conclusion
    In summary, the Service finds all forms of live silver carp,
including gametes, viable eggs and hybrids, to be injurious to wildlife
and wildlife resources of the United States and to the interests of
human beings because:
    ? Silver carp are highly likely to spread from their current
established range to new waterbodies in the United States;
    ? Silver carp are highly likely to compete with native species,
including threatened and endangered species, for food and habitat;
    ? Silver carp have the potential to carry pathogens and
transfer them to native fish;
    ? Silver carp are likely to develop dense populations that
will likely affect critical habitat for threatened and endangered
species and could further imperil other native fishes and mussels;
    ? Silver carp are negatively impacting humans;
    ? It would be difficult to eradicate or reduce large populations
of silver carp, or recover ecosystems disturbed by the species; and
    ? There are no potential ecological benefits for U.S. waters
from the introduction of silver carp.

Factors That Contribute to Injuriousness for Largescale Silver Carp

Potential Introduction and Spread

    To our knowledge, the largescale silver carp has not been imported
into the United States. Within its native range, largescale silver carp
occur in subtropical to tropical climates, which exist in parts of the
United States. Therefore, should pure largescale silver carp be
introduced to U.S. waters, its potential range would likely include
subtropical waters such as those present in southern Florida, southern
Texas, and Hawaii.
    The growth rate of largescale silver carp is greater than that of
silver carp. The reproductive capability is expected to be similar to
that of silver carp, though largescale silver carp reach sexual
maturity at a younger age than silver carp so they will spawn earlier.
    In culture situations, silver carp has hybridized with largescale
silver carp. The hybrids did not grow as quickly as largescale silver
carp but exceeded the growth rate of silver carp. Largescale silver
carp x silver carp hybrids were introduced in Kazakhstan where they
became established. The climate of Kazakhstan is temperate; thus,
largescale silver carp x silver carp hybrids are more cold-tolerant
than pure largescale silver carp. The faster growth rate of these
hybrids than pure silver carp and the increased palatability of
largescale silver carp compared to silver carp may conceivably
stimulate interest in culturing either the hybrids or pure largescale
silver carp in the United States. Because hybrids can tolerate
temperate climates, they have the potential to be cultured in many
southern States and would have a wider potential range where they could
establish in the United States.
    Escape from containment, as has happened with silver carp, would
provide a pathway for release of largescale silver carp into natural
waters of the United States. Should this fish or its hybrids be
released into natural waters, connected waterways would become a
secondary pathway for spread. Because of the morphological similarity
between this species and silver carp, stock contamination of silver
carp by largescale silver carp is possible if imported from regions
with populations of H. harmandi. Another possible introduction pathway,
should largescale silver carp or their hybrids be imported for culture,
would be sale of live individuals in food fish markets.
    Likelihood of spread of largescale silver carp, should they be
introduced, would be high in subtropical and tropical river systems of
the United States. Hybrid largescale silver carp x silver carp,
however, would have high potential to live in much of the temperate
United States. Because largescale silver carp can occupy and reproduce
in reservoirs, they could also live in lakes. The same is likely true
for hybrids. Young largescale silver carp or any hybrids captured by
anglers for use as live bait would be a pathway that could lead to
numerous future introductions of these species.

Hybrids

    Hybridization with native fishes is not believed to be possible,
but largescale silver carp are known to hybridize and to produce viable
offspring with silver carp and possibly bighead carp, both of which are
present in U.S. waters. Largescale silver x silver carp hybrids are
tolerant of a temperate climate (ca. 42-46[deg] N). (45[deg] N is a
latitude that parallels the border between New York State and Ontario,
Canada). Therefore, these hybrids would likely be capable of surviving
and probably establishing throughout much of the United States where
suitable waters exist. Largescale silver carp grow faster than silver
carp but hybrids do not grow as quickly as pure largescale silver carp.
It is highly likely that any largescale silver carp hybrids would
directly compete with native species for food and habitat.

Potential Effects on Native Species

    Largescale silver carp consume primarily planktonic food sources.
It is unknown if largescale silver carp feed more heavily on
phytoplankton than zooplankton, but their hybrids with silver carp
would likely show a preference for phytoplankton. Some adults may weigh
20-30 kg. The rapid growth and high fat content of this fish has made
it the most cultured species for food in Vietnam. Largescale silver
carp and hybrids are highly likely to compete for food with other
planktivorous native fishes and with post-larvae and early juveniles of
most native fishes should they become established in the United States.
    Fishes most likely to be affected are those species whose diet is
predominantly plankton including paddlefish (Polyodon spathula), native

[[Page 37465]]

to the Mississippi River Basin and Gulf of Mexico river drainages from
east Texas to Alabama, buffalos (Ictiobus spp.), or shads (Dorosoma
spp.). Given that these fish may already be competing with bighead and
silver carps in some areas, the presence of largescale silver carp
would increase food competition and increase the likelihood of negative
impacts to native species.
    Potential for direct predation and injury of drifting fertilized
eggs and larvae of fishes exists. Mussels are also filter feeders but
live partly or totally buried in the substrate; they would be less
likely to be affected by water column filter-feeding largescale silver
carp. Nevertheless, changes in the fish community structure caused by
largescale silver carp would likely have adverse effects on abundance
and availability of host fishes required for mussel reproduction.
    There are other possible, but less likely, effects that may cascade
through any aquatic ecosystem with an established population of
largescale silver carp. Nutrient levels are a concern because there is
evidence of overloading of nutrients in waters into which silver carp
have been introduced, and the same may apply to largescale silver carp
or their hybrids.
    Competition for habitat between largescale silver carp and native
species is likely high, especially in large rivers, lakes, and
reservoirs. Because they are planktivorous, the potential of largescale
silver and any hybrids to cause habitat degradation or destruction is
low as is direct predation on native mammals, birds, amphibians,
reptiles, mollusks or other live, non-aquatic animals.
    Additional adverse impacts on native wildlife, wildlife resources,
and ecosystem balance are likely few, except for fishes. Ecosystem
balance would likely be modified if populations of largescale silver carp
or any hybrids become large enough to dominate planktivorous fish species.
    Because largescale silver carp may survive and become established
and compete with native fishes, there is no acceptable escape or
release threshold for largescale silver carp or their hybrids.
    Adverse effects of largescale silver carp on selected threatened
and endangered freshwater mussels and fishes would be expected to be
moderate to high. There are currently 116 fishes and 70 mussels on the
Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. Because largescale
silver carp have the same habitat requirements as approximately 40
fishes and 25 mussels currently on the endangered or threatened species
list, these listed species in tropical or subtropical areas will likely
be impacted by the introductions of largescale silver carp through
competition for food and habitat. However, the habitat requirements,
springs and small streams, of the remaining listed fishes and mussels
would probably preclude any detectable effects as it is unlikely that
largescale silver carp or their hybrids would survive in such small
bodies of water.
    It is likely that largescale silver carp and highly likely that
their hybrids with silver carp would have adverse effects on designated
critical habitats of threatened and endangered species. There are
currently 60 species of fishes and 18 mussels with designated critical
habitat. At least 26 fishes and mussels with critical habitat inhabit
lakes or reaches of streams large enough to support hybrids of
largescale silver carp and silver carp. Largescale silver carp and
their hybrids have the potential to alter food webs and ultimately
alter nutrient and energy cycling in aquatic communities. The most
likely effect would be an alteration of fish community structure
through competition for food. Fishes and mussels that are determined to
be candidates for listing under the Endangered Species Act would
likewise be at risk.
    Native species may be placed in danger of extinction as a result of
the introduction or establishment of largescale silver carp if pure
stock became established in subtropical or tropical waters in the
United States. However, there is a higher risk for negative impacts to
native fishes from largescale silver carp hybrids. Large populations of
largescale silver carp or hybrids would likely alter native fish
community structures, ultimately resulting in decline of native mussels
since many rely on native host fishes for reproduction. The fact that
largescale silver carp have the potential to become abundant and reach
a very large size (> 1 m in length) in rivers, lakes, and reservoirs
increases the probability of a negative impact on aquatic ecosystems
should largescale silver carp be introduced and become established.

Potential Pathogens

    The potential for largescale silver carp to transfer pathogens is
largely unknown. No detailed studies of disease-causing agents of
largescale silver carp have been found, but at least three trematode
parasites (Dactylogyrus harmandi, D. hypophthalmichthys, D.
chenthushenae) are known to infect largescale silver carp. Bighead,
silver, grass, and black carps are known to host the Asian carp
tapeworm (Bothriocephalus acheilognathi), but it is unknown whether
largescale silver x silver carp host this species. Since largescale
silver carp are very similar to silver carp, they likely can host the
Asian carp tapeworm and infected fish, if introduced to U.S. waters,
could spread it to native fishes.

Potential Impacts to Humans

    The potential impact on the health and welfare of humans from
largescale silver carp or any hybrids is unknown. Because largescale
silver carp remain deep in the water column during daylight hours and
swim toward the surface at night to feed on plankton, they may be less
prone to jumping than silver carp in response to sounds of boat engines
during daytime. However, if largescale silver x carp hybrids display
the jumping behavior of pure silver carp, their potential to injure
humans could be considerable.

Factors That Reduce or Remove Injuriousness for Largescale Silver Carp

Detection and Response

    If largescale silver carp were introduced into U.S. waters, it is
unlikely that the introduction would be discovered until the numbers
were high enough to impact wildlife and wildlife resources. Widespread
surveys of waterways are not conducted to establish species' presence
lists. Delay in discovery would limit the ability and effectiveness to
rapidly respond to the introduction and prevent establishment.

Potential Control

    If largescale silver carp were to escape and become established in
natural waters, management of established populations would be highly
unlikely both physically and fiscally. Some control might be possible
with massive fishing efforts using nets, but this is unlikely to stem
range expansion. There would have to be substantial commercial demand
to justify the expense of such efforts.
    Chemicals or selective removal may be used to manage populations in
localized areas. However, selective removal of largescale silver carp
would be difficult because they remain in deeper waters during daylight
hours when such removal efforts would probably occur. Pheromones may be
a viable option to limit spread; this possibility is under investigation
for silver carp, and may have applicability to largescale silver carp.
    However, research into this control method is in early stages.

[[Page 37466]]

    Because no evidence exists that largescale silver carp have been
imported or released into U.S. waters, triploidy or induced sterility
could potentially reduce injuriousness. However, these processes are
costly, time-consuming, and not 100% effective so there is potential
for triploid largescale silver carp to cause harm if they were released.
    It would be difficult to control the spread of largescale silver
carp to new locations except, perhaps, by use of electric, acoustic,
physical and other types of barriers. At present, there is no method
known to substantially reduce populations of introduced fishes in U.S.
waterways. It is highly unlikely that largescale silver carp could be
eradicated from U.S. waterways, should they be introduced, unless they
are found in unconnected waterbodies.

Recovery of Disturbed Sites

    Although there is no evidence that this species has been introduced
or targeted for introduction into the United States, the lack of
available methods to detect, eradicate or control introduced
populations indicates that should largescale silver carp be introduced,
rehabilitation or recovery of ecosystems disturbed by this species
would be highly unlikely.

Potential Pathogens

    The potential for largescale silver carp or any hybrids to infect
native fishes with pathogens is largely unknown. Should such transfers
prove viable, the ability and effectiveness to control the spread of
pathogens to native fishes would be low.

Potential Ecological Benefits for Introduction

    There are no potential ecological benefits for introduction of
largescale silver carp or any hybrids in natural waters of the United
States.
Conclusion
    In summary, the Service finds all forms of live largescale silver
carp, including gametes, viable eggs and hybrids, to be injurious to
the wildlife and wildlife resources of the United States and to the
interests of human beings because:
    ? Largescale silver carp are likely to escape or be released
into the wild if imported into the United States;
    ? Largescale silver carp are highly likely to survive,
become established, and spread in tropical or subtropical areas of the
United States if they escape or are released;
    ? Largescale silver carp would likely carry pathogens that
could be transferred to native fish;
    ? Largescale silver carp and hybrids are likely to compete
with native species, including threatened and endangered species, for
food and habitat;
    ? Largescale silver carp could develop dense populations that would
likely affect critical habitat for threatened and endangered species and
are highly likely to negatively impact native fishes and mussels;
    ? Largescale silver carp have been shown to hybridize with
silver carp, a nonnative species already established in the United States,
and would likely have a larger range than pure largescale silver carp;
    ? Largescale silver carp hybrids with silver carp may
display jumping behavior that could injure humans;
    ? If largescale silver carp were introduced into the United
States, it would be extremely difficult to prevent their spread and to
control populations in natural waters;
    ? It would be difficult to eradicate or reduce large
populations of largescale silver carp and to recover ecosystems
disturbed by the species; and
    ? There are no potential ecological benefits from the
introduction of largescale silver carp for U.S. waters.

Required Determinations

Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.)

    This rule contains potential information collection activity for
FWS Form 3-200-42, Import/Acquisition/Transport of Injurious Wildlife.
Completion of this form would be necessary to apply for a permit to
import, or transport across State lines, any live silver or largescale
silver carp, gametes, viable eggs, or hybrids for scientific, medical,
educational, or zoological purposes. The Service already has approval
from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to collect information
for this special use permit under OMB control number 1018-0093. This
approval expires July 31, 2007. The Service may not conduct or sponsor,
and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information
unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

Regulatory Planning and Review

    (a) In accordance with the criteria in Executive Order 12866, OMB
has designated this rule as a significant regulatory action.
    This rule will not have an annual economic effect of $100 million
or more or adversely affect an economic sector, productivity, jobs, the
environment, or other units of the government. A brief assessment to
clarify the costs and benefits associated with this rule follows.
Costs Incurred
Silver Carp
    We expect this rule to have minimal costs. Silver carp are not
cultured in the United States, nor do we believe that they are imported
or exported. Currently, there are some commercial fisheries for silver
carp in the Mississippi, Missouri, and Illinois rivers. Usually,
commercial fishermen are catching silver carp as bycatch, which can
account for up to 50 percent of the catch. Silver carp are not
favorable because of their jumping habits and because they are less
desirable by the consumer. In Missouri, many of the fishermen do not
primarily target Asian carp (bighead and silver carp) because the price
received is low ($0.10-$0.15 per pound). Instead, they fish for bighead
and silver carp when other species or opportunities are unavailable.
Many fishermen do not distinguish between bighead carp and silver carp.
    Data for the silver carp fishery are limited. According to public
comments received, small commercial fisheries for silver carp exist in
Illinois, Iowa, and Kentucky. Table 1 shows commercial fishery landings
and value in Iowa and Illinois in 2003. Compared to the total
commercial harvest and value, Asian carp represented 11 percent of
landings and 6 percent of value in 2003. Because Illinois does not
distinguish between bighead carp and silver carp in its annual report,
we are unable to determine the magnitude of silver carp landings for
the entire area. For Iowa, silver carp represented less than 1 percent
of total landings. In 2005, silver carp represented less than 1 percent
of commercial landings in Kentucky and less than one-tenth of
commercial landings in Louisiana (public comments, J. Gassett 25 Oct
2006 and J. Roussel 6 Nov 2006).
    The majority of the silver carp catch is sold as round weight. In
Illinois, fishermen can sell silver carp as long as they are not
transported live once the fish are taken off the water. No impacts are
expected to the silver carp market because they are not delivered live.

[[Page 37467]]

                    Table 1.--2003 Commercial Fishery Landings and Value in Iowa and Illinois
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                   Illinois \1\     Iowa \2,3\         Total
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total Commercial Harvest (lbs)..................................       6,385,473       2,242,997       8,628,470
    Asian Carp*.................................................         900,497          15,774         916,271
    Silver Carp.................................................  ..............           3,828           3,828
Total Commercial Value ($)......................................      $1,334,467        $496,765      $1,831,232
    Asian Carp*.................................................         $99,055          $1,735        $100,790
    Silver Carp.................................................  ..............            $421            $421
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\*\ Asian carp includes bighead carp and silver carp. The value for Asian carp and silver carp in Iowa is based
  on the average $0.11/lb received, which is the same as Illinois.
\1\ Illinois Department of Natural Resources. 2005. 2003 Commercial Catch Report. Brighton, Illinois.
\2\ Personal communication, Gene Jones, Iowa Department of Natural Resources.
\3\ Iowa Department of Natural Resources. 2003. Fisheries Management Section 2003 Completion Reports. Des
  Moines, Iowa.

    The market for live silver carp in U.S. markets is unknown and no
public comments received reported a U.S. market for live silver carp.
It is possible that silver carp are inadvertently shipped along with
live bighead carp. However, most live haulers will not haul live silver
carp because the fish do not transport well. Furthermore, the consumer
prefers bighead carp to silver carp. Because only sales of live silver
carp would be regulated by this rulemaking, we do not expect any
impacts to commercial fishermen unless they are transporting live
silver carp across State lines for processing. While the exact impact
is unknown, we expect it to be minimal.
Largescale Silver Carp
    There is no known use for largescale silver carp in the United
States or import or export of the species into or from the United
States. We do not know of any future plans to use largescale silver
carp in the United States. During the public comment period, no
comments reported largescale silver carp being used. Therefore, we do
not expect the rule to add largescale silver carp to the list of
injurious wildlife to have any costs.
Benefits Accrued
Silver Carp
    Within several waters of the Midwest, silver carp comprise a
percentage of the commercial catch as bycatch (non-target species).
This may be negatively impacting revenue for commercial fishermen because
silver carp are not as valuable as the native species that are targeted.
    Furthermore, it is possible that silver carp populations will be
delayed or not become established in new watersheds (Columbia Basin,
Chesapeake Basin, and Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta) with similar
attributes as the Mississippi River Basin as a result of this
rulemaking. Silver carp are likely to compete with native fish for
food, causing declines in native fishes in the United States,
particularly those that rely heavily on plankton as a food resource.
    Thus, this rule will protect native fish, and the recreational and
commercial fisheries associated with native fish. In terms of
recreational fisheries, benefits would accrue due to (1) consumer
surplus generated from fishing native fish and (2) fishing-related
expenditures such as food, lodging, and equipment. In terms of
commercial fisheries, benefits would accrue due to the revenue from
fishing native fish, which are more valuable than silver carp. The
timeline for when these benefits would accrue depends on the potential
spread and impacts of silver carp. The extent of benefits to
recreational and commercial fisheries is unknown.
Largescale Silver Carp
    There have been no reports that largescale silver carp are in the
United States. However, native fish populations are likely to decline
if largescale silver carp were to establish populations in the United
States. With this rule, we reduce the risk of the introduction and
establishment of largescale silver carp (or any hybrids) in U.S.
watersheds. Thus, this rule protects native fish and the recreational
and commercial fisheries associated with native fish. In terms of
recreational fisheries, benefits would accrue due to the continued (1)
consumer surplus generated from fishing native fish and (2) fishing-
related expenditures such as food, lodging, and equipment. In terms of
commercial fisheries, benefits would accrue due to the continued
revenue from fishing native fish. The extent of benefits to
recreational and commercial fisheries is unknown because it depends on
the introduction and subsequent establishment of largescale silver carp
populations in the United States.
    (b) This rule will not create inconsistencies with other Federal
agencies' actions. This rule pertains only to regulations promulgated
by the Service under the Lacey Act. No other agencies are involved in
these regulations.
    (c) This rule will not materially affect entitlements, grants, user
fees, loan programs, or the rights and obligations of their recipients.
This rule does not affect entitlement programs. This rule is aimed at
regulating the importation and movement of nonindigenous species that
cause or have the potential to cause significant economic and other
impacts on natural resources that are the trust responsibility of the
Federal Government.
    (d) OMB has determined that this rule raises novel legal or policy
issues.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (as amended by the Small
Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) of 1996),
whenever a Federal agency publishes a notice of rulemaking for any
proposed or final rule, it must prepare and make available for public
comment a regulatory flexibility analysis that describes the effect of
the rule on small entities (i.e., small businesses, small
organizations, and small government jurisdictions) (5 U.S.C. 601 et
seq.). However, no regulatory flexibility analysis is required if the
head of an agency certifies that the rule would not have a significant
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Thus, for a
regulatory flexibility analysis to be required, impacts must exceed a
threshold for ``significant impact'' and a threshold for a
``substantial number of small entities.'' See 5 U.S.C. 605(b). SBREFA
amended the Regulatory Flexibility Act to require Federal agencies to
provide a statement of the factual basis for certifying that a rule
would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of
small entities.
    This rulemaking may impact a small number of fishermen selling live
silver carp. The number of fishermen targeting silver carp is unknown.
Because the

[[Page 37468]]

market for live silver carp is also unknown, we are unable to estimate
the degree of impact of this rulemaking. We expect this rulemaking to
have a minimal effect on commercial fishermen selling live silver carp
because many live haulers do not transport live silver carp. We do not
expect this rulemaking to affect aquaculture because silver carp,
largescale silver carp, or any hybrids are not being cultured in the
United States at this time.
    Many small businesses within the retail trade industry (such as
hotels, gas stations, taxidermy shops, bait and tackle shops, etc.) may
benefit from continued recreational fishing without impacts from silver
carp, largescale silver carp, or any hybrids. Furthermore, small
businesses associated with commercial fishing (fishermen, wholesalers,
and retailers) will also benefit from continued commercial fishing
without impacts from silver carp, largescale silver carp, or any
hybrids. We do not know the extent to which these small businesses will
continue to benefit. However, we expect this benefit to be distributed
across various watersheds, and so we do not expect that the rule will
have a significant economic effect (benefit) on a substantial number of
small entities in any region or nationally.
    Therefore, we certify that this rule will not have a significant
economic effect on a substantial number of small entities as defined
under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.). An initial
or final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis is not required. Accordingly,
a Small Entity Compliance Guide is not required. For the reason
described below, no individual small industry within the United States
will be significantly affected if silver carp or largescale silver carp
importation is prohibited.

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act

    The rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804(2), the Small
Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act. This rule:
    (a) Does not have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million
or more. Silver carp is in limited commercial trade in the United
States and primarily as fillets; the largescale silver carp is not
known to be imported or present in the United States. Silver carp are
likely to negatively affect many native fishery resources if they
continue to spread in the United States. The largescale silver carp
could devastate many native fishery resources if it is introduced to
U.S. waterways. This rulemaking will protect the environment from the
introduction and spread of nonnative species and will indirectly work
to sustain the economic benefits enjoyed by numerous small
establishments connected with recreational and commercial fishing.
    (b) Will not cause a major increase in costs or prices for
consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government
agencies, or geographic regions.
    (c) Does not have significant adverse effects on competition,
employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or the ability of
U.S.-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    In accordance with the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (2 U.S.C. 1501
et seq.), this rule does not impose an unfunded mandate on State,
local, or tribal governments or the private sector of more than $100
million per year. The rule would not prohibit intrastate transport or
any use of silver carp or largescale silver carp within State
boundaries. Any regulations concerning the use of silver carp or
largescale silver carp within individual States will be the
responsibility of each State. The rule does not have a significant or
unique effect on State, local, or tribal governments or the private
sector. A statement containing the information required by the Unfunded
Mandates Reform Act is not required.

Takings

    In accordance with Executive Order 12630, the rule does not have
significant takings implications. A takings implication assessment is
not required. This rule would not impose significant requirements or
limitations on private property use.

Federalism

    In accordance with Executive Order 13132, the rule does not have
significant Federalism effects. A Federalism assessment is not
required. This rule would not have substantial direct effects on
States, in the relationship between the Federal government and the
States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the
various levels of government. Therefore, in accordance with Executive
Order 13132, we determine that this rule does not have sufficient
Federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a Federalism
Assessment.

Civil Justice Reform

    In accordance with Executive Order 12988, the Office of the
Solicitor has determined that the rule does not unduly burden the
judicial system and meets the requirements of sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2)
of the Executive Order. The rule has been reviewed to eliminate
drafting errors and ambiguity, was written to minimize litigation,
provides a clear legal standard for affected conduct rather than a
general standard, and promotes simplification and burden reduction.

National Environmental Policy Act

    We have prepared environmental assessments (EAs) in conjunction
with this rulemaking, and have determined that this rulemaking is not a
major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human
environment within the meaning of section 102(2)(C) of the National
Environmental Policy Act (NEPA of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.)). No
comments on the draft environmental assessments were received. For
copies of the final EAs, contact the individual identified above in the
section FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT, or access the documents at
<A HREF="http://www.fws.gov/contaminants/ANS/ANSInjurious.cfm";>http://www.fws.gov/contaminants/ANS/ANSInjurious.cfm</A>.
    Adding silver carp and largescale silver carp to the list of
injurious wildlife is intended to prevent their further introduction
and establishment into natural waters of the United States in order to
protect native fishes, the survival and welfare of wildlife and
wildlife resources, and the health and welfare of humans. Not listing
silver carp as injurious may allow for an expansion to States where
they are not already found, thus increasing the risk of their escape
and establishment in new areas due to accidental release and, perhaps,
intentional release. Their establishment is negatively impacting native
fish, wildlife, and humans. Silver carp are established throughout much
of the Mississippi River Basin. Releases of silver carp into natural
waters of the United States are likely to occur again, and the species
is likely to become established in additional U.S. waterways,
threatening native fish populations, wildlife, and wildlife resources
dependent on phytoplankton, zooplankton, bacteria, and detritus, and
impacting human health.
    Largescale silver carp are not known to be in the United States,
but if introduced to natural waters, they would likely impact the
welfare and survival of native fish and wildlife, as well as the health
and welfare of humans. In addition, largescale silver carp are visually
similar to silver carp and can readily hybridize with silver carp, so
they would be difficult to distinguish from silver carp.

[[Page 37469]]

Government-to-Government Relationship With Tribes

    In accordance with the President's memorandum of April 29, 1994,
``Government-to-Government Relations with Native American Tribal
Governments'' (59 FR 22951), Executive Order 13175, and 512 DM 2, we
have evaluated potential effects on Federally recognized Indian tribes
and have determined that there are no potential effects. This rule
involves the importation and interstate movement of all forms of live
silver carp, largescale silver carp, gametes, viable eggs, and hybrids.
We are unaware of trade in these species by Tribes.

Effects on Energy

    On May 18, 2001, the President issued Executive Order 13211 on
regulations that significantly affect energy supply, distribution, and
use. Executive Order 13211 requires agencies to prepare Statements of
Energy Effects when undertaking certain actions. This rule is not
expected to affect energy supplies, distribution, and use. Therefore,
this action is a not a significant energy action, and no Statement of
Energy Effects is required.

References Cited

    A complete list of all references used in this rulemaking is
available upon request from the Branch of Invasive Species (see the FOR
FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section).

List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 16

    Fish, Imports, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements,
Transportation, Wildlife.

? For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service amends part 16, subchapter B of Chapter I, Title 50 of the Code
of Federal Regulations, as set forth below.

PART 16--[AMENDED]

? 1. The authority citation for part 16 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 18 U.S.C. 42.

? 2. Amend Sec.  16.13 as follows:
? a. By removing the word ``and'' at the end of paragraph (a)(2)(iii);
? b. By removing the period at the end of paragraph (a)(2)(iv)(BB) and
adding in its place ``; and'' ; and
? c. By adding a new paragraph (a)(2)(v) to read as set forth below.

Sec.  16.13  Importation of live or dead fish, mollusks, and
crustaceans, or their eggs.

    (a) * * *
    (2) * * *
    (v) Any live fish, gametes, viable eggs, or hybrids of the species
silver carp, Hypophthalmichthys molitrix, and largescale silver carp,
Hypophthalmichthys harmandi.
* * * * *

    Dated: May 18, 2007.
Todd Willens,
Acting Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks.
[FR Doc. E7-13371 Filed 7-9-07; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-55-P

------------------------------------------

==========================================
Alex J. Sagady & Associates        http://www.sagady.com

Environmental Enforcement, Permit/Technical Review, Public Policy, 
Expert Witness Review and Litigation Investigation on Air, Water and 
Waste/Community Environmental and Resource Protection
Prospectus at:  http://www.sagady.com/sagady.pdf 

657 Spartan Avenue,  East Lansing, MI  48823  
(517) 332-6971; (517) 332-8987 (fax); ajs@sagady.com
==========================================  

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
glin-announce is hosted by the Great Lakes Information Network (GLIN):
http://www.great-lakes.net

To subscribe: http://www.glin.net/forms/glin-announce_form.html

To post a message: http://www.glin.net/forms/glin-announce_post.html

To search the archive: http://www.glin.net/lists/glin-announce/

All views and opinions presented above are solely those of the author or
attributed source and do not necessarily reflect those of GLIN or its
management.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *