[Federal Register Volume 75, Number 84 (Monday, May 3, 2010)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 23151-23152]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2010-10282]



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Rules and Regulations
                                                Federal Register
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Federal Register / Vol. 75, No. 84 / Monday, May 3, 2010 / Rules and 
Regulations

[[Page 23151]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

7 CFR Parts 360 and 361

[Docket No. APHIS-2008-0097]


Noxious Weeds; Old World Climbing Fern and Maidenhair Creeper

AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Affirmation of interim rule as final rule.

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SUMMARY: We are adopting as a final rule, without change, an interim 
rule that amended the noxious weed regulations by adding Old World 
climbing fern (Lygodium microphyllum (Cavanilles) R. Brown) and 
maidenhair creeper (Lygodium flexuosum (Linnaeus) Swartz) to the list 
of terrestrial noxious weeds. This action is necessary to prevent the 
artificial spread of these noxious weeds within and into the United 
States.

DATES: Effective on May 3, 2010, we are adopting as a final rule the 
interim rule published at 74 FR 53397-53400 on October 19, 2009.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dr. Alan V. Tasker, Noxious Weeds 
Program Coordinator, Emergency and Domestic Programs, PPQ, APHIS, 4700 
River Road Unit 26, Riverdale, MD 20737-1236, (301) 734-5225; or Ms. 
Dorothy Wayson, Regulatory Coordination Specialist, Regulatory 
Coordination and Compliance, Permits, Registrations, Imports, and 
Manuals, PPQ, APHIS, 4700 River Road Unit 52, Riverdale, MD 20737-1236, 
(301) 734-0772.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    Under the authority of the Plant Protection Act (PPA, 7 U.S.C. 7701 
et seq.), the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) 
administers the noxious weeds regulations in 7 CFR part 360, which 
prohibit or restrict the importation and interstate movement of those 
plants that are designated as noxious weeds in Sec.  360.200. The PPA 
defines ``noxious weed'' as ``any plant or plant product that can 
directly or indirectly injure or cause damage to crops (including 
nursery stock or plant products), livestock, poultry, or other 
interests of agriculture, irrigation, navigation, and the natural 
resources of the United States, the public health, or the 
environment.''
    Under the authority of the Federal Seed Act of 1939, as amended (7 
U.S.C. 1551 et seq.), the U.S. Department of Agriculture regulates the 
importation and interstate movement of certain agricultural and 
vegetable seeds and screenings. Title III of that Act, ``Foreign 
Commerce,'' requires shipments of imported agricultural and vegetable 
seeds to be labeled correctly and to be tested for the presence of the 
seeds of certain noxious weeds as a condition of entry into the United 
States. APHIS' regulations implementing the provisions of title III of 
the Federal Seed Act are found in 7 CFR part 361. A list of noxious 
weed seeds is contained in Sec.  361.6. Paragraph (a)(1) of Sec.  361.6 
lists species of noxious weed seeds with no tolerances applicable to 
their introduction into the United States.
    In an interim rule\1\ effective and published in the Federal 
Register on October 19, 2009 (74 CFR 53397-53400, Docket No. APHIS-
2008-0097), we amended the regulations by adding Old World climbing 
fern (Lygodium microphyllum (Cavanilles) R. Brown) and maidenhair 
creeper (Lygodium flexuosum (Linnaeus) Swartz) to the list of 
terrestrial noxious weeds in Sec.  360.200(c) and to the list of 
noxious weed seeds with no tolerances applicable to their introduction 
in Sec.  361.6(a)(1). In that interim rule, we also made the weed risk 
assessment (WRA) and the Federal decision document available for public 
review and comment.
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    \1\ To view the interim rule, the supporting documents, and the 
comments we received, go to (http://www.regulations.gov/fdmspublic/component/main?main=DocketDetail&d=APHIS-2008-0097).
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    We solicited comments concerning the interim rule, WRA, and the 
Federal decision document for 60 days ending December 18, 2009. We 
received three comments, two from private citizens and one from a State 
Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, by that date. All of 
the commenters supported the addition of both Old World Climbing Fern 
(L. microphyllum) and Maidenhair Creeper (L. flexuosum) to the list of 
Federal Noxious weeds.
    One of the commenters asked that we consider adding other species 
within the Schizaeaceae family to the list of Federal noxious weeds. 
Specifically, the commenter was concerned that other species in the 
Schizaeaceae family are weedy and/or invasive, because L. microphyllum 
and L. flexuosum have been reported to interbreed with closely related 
species. A link to a reference on the Internet was provided by the 
commenter to try to illustrate that behavior.
    In our assessment of L. microphyllum, L. flexuosum, and L. 
japonicum we did not encounter any evidence that these species are 
capable of hybridizing with any other species. The study that the 
commenter referred to examines the reproductive biology of L. 
microphyllum and L. japonicum and provides evidence that L. 
microphyllum is capable of intergametophytic crossing. 
Intergametophytic crossing refers to two different gametophytes of the 
same species crossing with each other; it does not refer to crossing of 
two different species, which concerned the commenter. Two other species 
of Lygodium were once reported to hybridize, but there is no immediate 
indication that these or any other members of the Lygodiaceae or 
Schizaeaceae families are weeds. APHIS will continue to explore the 
literature to determine whether any additional Lygodiaceae or 
Schizaeaceae warrant regulation.
    Therefore, for the reasons given in the interim rule and in this 
document, we are adopting the interim rule as a final.
    This action also affirms the information contained in the interim 
rule concerning Executive Order 12866 and the Regulatory Flexibility 
Act, Executive Orders 12372 and 12988, and the Paperwork Reduction Act.
    Further, for this action, the Office of Management and Budget has 
waived its review under Executive Order 12866.

[[Page 23152]]

List of Subjects

7 CFR Part 360

    Imports, Plants (Agriculture), Quarantine, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements, Transportation, Weeds.

7 CFR Part 361

    Agricultural commodities, Imports, Labeling, Quarantine, Reporting 
and recordkeeping requirements, Seeds, Vegetables, Weeds.

PART 360--NOXIOUS WEED REGULATIONS

PART 361--IMPORTATION OF SEED AND SCREENINGS UNDER THE FEDERAL SEED 
ACT

0
Accordingly, we are adopting as a final rule, without change, the 
interim rule that amended 7 CFR parts 360 and 361 and that was 
published at 74 FR 53397-53400 on October 19, 2009.
    Done in Washington, DC, this 27\th\ day of April 2010.

Kevin Shea
Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
[FR Doc. 2010-10282 Filed 4-30-10; 8:45 am]
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