Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
On March 5, 2012, notice was published in the
The Permit Holder is authorized to conduct long-term research on the demographics and movements of green, loggerhead, hawksbill, and Kemp's ridley sea turtles in the Key West National Wildlife Refuge and the Big Bend of Florida. The objectives of the research are to: (1) Obtain information on sea turtle abundance, size frequencies, and sex ratios; (2) determine the genetic origin of sea turtle populations in the region; (3) continue to monitor turtle foraging habits; (4) track prevalence of fibropapilomatosis in sea turtles; (5) track green sea turtle movements west of the Marquesas Keys; and (6) identify habitat preferences of hawksbill sea turtles in the Key West National Wildlife Refuge. Up to 160 green, 160 loggerhead, 75 hawksbill, and 66 Kemp's ridley sea turtles may be captured annually for flipper and passive integrated transponder tagging, blood and tissue sampling, morphometrics, photography, and weights. A subset of sea turtles may be lavaged and/or satellite tagged. In addition to captures, researchers may conduct vessel surveys to observe and count sea turtles in the area. The permit is valid for five years.
Issuance of this permit, as required by the ESA, 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 or threatened species, and (3) is consistent with the purposes and policies set forth in section 2 of the ESA.