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In celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the Endangered Species Act, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service designed a series of commemorative posters featuring eight federally-listed species found across the United States. These eight listed species have been the focus of intense recovery efforts working with countless agencies, organizations and dedicated community members.
The Interim Consultation Framework (framework) offers a streamlined formal section 7 consultation process that provides take authorization for northern long-eared bat for federal projects that are completed by April 1, 2024, and consistent with the 4(d) rule. The framework applies to a wide variety of ongoing projects with a federal nexus (federal permit or funding), such as timber harvest, prescribed fire, and infrastructure projects. For projects where take is likely to occur that meet the requirements of the framework, agencies will fill out a template Biological Assessment form, and Field Offices will provide a completed template Biological Opinion and Incidental Take Statement in a timely manner.
The Interim Wind Guidance (and associated documents) provides a strategy that will allow companies to operate and monitor for northern long-eared bats in a manner where take is not reasonably certain to occur. The guidance includes a curtailment strategy (i.e., reduction in electricity generation) at lower wind speeds when bats are migrating.
The goal of the Interim Habitat Modification Guidance is to help private, state, tribal, and local project proponents determine if they are reasonably certain to take northern long-eared bats when conducting activities that result in habitat modification. If take is reasonably certain, proponents can decide if they want to develop a Habitat Conservation Plan for their activities and apply for an Incidental Take Permit that would provide take authorization under section 10 of the ESA. Because the northern long-eared bat is now extremely rare on the landscape, we anticipate take will not be reasonably certain for most projects.