[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 209 (Tuesday, October 29, 2013)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 64637-64690]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-24103]



[[Page 64637]]

Vol. 78

Tuesday,

No. 209

October 29, 2013

Part III





Department of the Interior





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Fish and Wildlife Service





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50 CFR Part 17





Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Determination of 
Endangered Species Status for 15 Species on Hawaii Island; Final Rule

Federal Register / Vol. 78 , No. 209 / Tuesday, October 29, 2013 / 
Rules and Regulations

[[Page 64638]]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 17

[Docket No. FWS-R1-ES-2012-0070; 4500030113]
RIN 1018-AY09


Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Determination of 
Endangered Species Status for 15 Species on Hawaii Island

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), determine 
endangered species status under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 
(Act), as amended, for 15 species on the island of Hawaii. In addition, 
we are recognizing a taxonomic change for one Hawaiian plant currently 
listed as an endangered species and revising the List of Endangered and 
Threatened Plants accordingly. The effect of this regulation is to 
conserve these species under the Act.

DATES: This rule is effective on November 29, 2013.

ADDRESSES: This final rule is available on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov and http://www.fws.gov/pacificislands. Comments and 
materials received, as well as supporting documentation used in 
preparing this final rule, are available for public inspection, by 
appointment, during normal business hours, at U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office, 300 Ala Moana 
Boulevard, Room 3-122, Honolulu, HI 96850; by telephone at 808-792-
9400; or by facsimile at 808-792-9581.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Loyal Mehrhoff, Field Supervisor, U.S. 
Fish and Wildlife Service, Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office, 
300 Ala Moana Boulevard, Room 3-122, Honolulu, HI 96850; by telephone 
at 808-792-9400; or by facsimile at 808-792-9581. If you use a 
telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call the Federal 
Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 800-877-8339.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Executive Summary

    Why we need to publish a rule. This is a final rule to list 15 
species (13 plants, 1 insect (picture-wing fly), and 1 crustacean 
(anchialine pool shrimp)) from the island of Hawaii, in the State of 
Hawaii, as endangered species. In addition, in this final rule, we also 
recognize a taxonomic change for one endangered plant species, and 
revise the List of Endangered and Threatened Plants accordingly.
    The basis for our action. Under the Act, we determine that a 
species is an endangered or threatened species based on any of five 
factors: (A) The present or threatened destruction, modification, or 
curtailment of its habitat or range; (B) overutilization for 
commercial, recreational, scientific, or educational purposes; (C) 
disease or predation; (D) the inadequacy of existing regulatory 
mechanisms; or (E) other natural or manmade factors affecting its 
continued existence. We have determined that the 15 Hawaii Island 
species are currently in danger of extinction throughout all their 
ranges as the result of ongoing threats that include the destruction 
and modification of habitat from nonnative feral ungulates (e.g., pigs, 
goats); competition with nonnative plant and animal species; 
agricultural and urban development; wildfire, erosion, drought, and 
hurricanes; climate change; predation and herbivory; the inadequacy of 
existing regulatory mechanisms; human dumping of nonnative fish and 
trash; small numbers of individuals and populations; hybridization; the 
lack of reproduction in the wild; loss of host plants; and competition 
with nonnative tipulid flies (large crane flies). We fully considered 
comments from the public, including comments we received during a 
public hearing, and comments we received from peer reviewers, on the 
proposed rule.
    Peer reviewers support our methods. We obtained opinions from 11 
knowledgeable individuals with scientific expertise to review our 
technical assumptions, to review our analysis, and to determine whether 
or not we used the best available information. Nine (2 plant reviewers, 
2 picture-wing fly reviewers, and 5 of the 7 anchialine pool shrimp 
reviewers) of these 11 peer reviewers generally concurred with our 
methods and provided additional information, clarifications, and 
suggestions to improve this final rule. One shrimp peer reviewer 
recommended further surveys for the anchialine pool shrimp, and a 
second shrimp reviewer commented that we should proceed with caution 
regarding listing the shrimp due to the lack of biological information. 
A response to all peer review comments is provided elsewhere in this 
final rule.
    The final critical habitat designation for Bidens micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla, Isodendrion pyrifolium, and Mezoneuron kavaiense, as 
proposed in the Federal Register (77 FR 63928; October 17, 2012), is 
still under development and undergoing agency review. It will publish 
in the near future in the Federal Register under Docket No. FWS-R1-ES-
2013-0028.

Previous Federal Actions

    Federal actions for these species prior to October 17, 2012, are 
outlined in our proposed rule (77 FR 63928), which was published on 
that date. Publication of the proposed rule opened a 60-day comment 
period, which closed on December 17, 2012. In addition, we published a 
public notice of the proposed rule on October 20, 2012, in the local 
Honolulu Star Advertiser, West Hawaii Today, and the Hawaii Tribune 
Herald newspapers. On April 30, 2013, we published in the Federal 
Register a document (78 FR 25243) that made available and requested 
public comments on the draft economic analysis for the October 17, 
2012, proposed critical habitat designation (77 FR 63928); announced a 
public information meeting and hearing to be held in Kailua-Kona, 
Hawaii Island, on May 15, 2013; and reopened the comment period on the 
October 17, 2012, proposed rule for an additional 30 days. This second 
comment period closed on May 30, 2013. In total, we accepted public 
comments on the October 17, 2012, proposed rule for 90 days.

Background

Hawaii Island Species Addressed in This Final Rule

    The table below (Table 1) provides the scientific name, common 
name, and listing status for the species that are the subjects of this 
final rule.

[[Page 64639]]



                         Table 1--The Hawaii Island Species Addressed in This Final Rule
                           [Note that many of the species share the same common name]
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         Scientific name                       Common name(s)                          Listing status
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Plants:
    Bidens hillebrandiana ssp.     kookoolau.............................  Endangered.
     hillebrandiana.
    Bidens micrantha ssp.          kookoolau.............................  Endangered.
     ctenophylla.
    Cyanea marksii...............  haha..................................  Endangered.
    Cyanea tritomantha...........  aku...................................  Endangered.
    Cyrtandra nanawaleensis......  haiwale...............................  Endangered.
    Cyrtandra wagneri............  haiwale...............................  Endangered.
    Mezoneuron kavaiense           uhiuhi................................  Endangered--Listed in 1986.
     (taxonomic change accepted)
     (Formerly listed as
     Caesalpinia kavaiense).
    Phyllostegia floribunda......  NCN \1\...............................  Endangered.
    Pittosporum hawaiiense.......  hoawa, haawa..........................  Endangered.
    Platydesma remyi.............  NCN...................................  Endangered.
    Pritchardia lanigera.........  loulu.................................  Endangered.
    Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei  NCN...................................  Endangered.
    Schiedea hawaiiensis.........  NCN...................................  Endangered.
    Stenogyne cranwelliae........  NCN...................................  Endangered.
Animals:
    Drosophila digressa..........  picture-wing fly......................  Endangered.
    Vetericaris chaceorum........  anchialine pool shrimp................  Endangered
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ NCN = no common name.

Taxonomic Change Since Listing for One Plant Species
    We listed Mezoneuron kavaiense as an endangered species in 1986 (51 
FR 24672; July 8, 1986), based on the taxonomic treatment of Hillebrand 
(1888, pp. 110-111). Following the reduction of Mezoneuron to 
Caesalpinia by Hattink (1974, p. 5), Geesink et al. (1990, pp. 646-647) 
changed the name to Caesalpinia kavaiensis. In 1989, the List of 
Endangered and Threatened Plants (List) was revised to identify the 
listed entity as Caesalpinia kavaiense, although the specific epithet 
was misspelled in the List (at that time the correct spelling for this 
entity was Caesalpinia kavaiensis). Recent phylogenetic studies support 
separation of Mezoneuron from Caesalpinia (Bruneau et al. 2008, p. 
710). The recognized scientific name for this species is Mezoneuron 
kavaiense (Wagner et al. 2012, p. 37). The range of the species between 
the time of listing and now has not changed. Therefore, we recognize 
the listed species as Mezoneuron kavaiense. We are amending the List to 
reflect this taxonomic change, but this amendment does not in any way 
change the listed entity or its protections under the Act (16 U.S.C. 
1531 et seq.).

An Ecosystem-Based Approach to Listing 15 Species on Hawaii Island

    On the island of Hawaii, as on most of the Hawaiian Islands, native 
species that occur in the same habitat types (ecosystems) depend on 
many of the same biological features and the successful functioning of 
that ecosystem to survive. We have therefore organized the species 
addressed in this final rule by common ecosystem. Although the listing 
determination for each species is analyzed separately, we have 
organized the individual analysis for each species within the context 
of the broader ecosystem in which it occurs to avoid redundancy. In 
addition, native species that share ecosystems often face a suite of 
common factors that may be a threat to them, and ameliorating or 
eliminating these threats for each individual species often requires 
the exact same management actions in the exact same areas. Effective 
management of these threats often requires implementation of 
conservation actions at the ecosystem scale to enhance or restore 
critical ecological processes and provide for long-term viability of 
those species in their native environment. Thus, by taking this 
approach, we hope not only to organize this final rule efficiently, but 
also to more effectively focus conservation management efforts on the 
common threats that occur across these ecosystems. Those efforts would 
facilitate restoration of ecosystem functionality for the recovery of 
each species, and provide conservation benefits for associated native 
species, thereby potentially precluding the need to list other species 
under the Act that occur in these shared ecosystems. In addition, this 
approach is in accord with the primary stated purpose of the Act (see 
section 2(b)): ``to provide a means whereby the ecosystems upon which 
endangered species and threatened species depend may be conserved.''
    We are listing the plants Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. 
hillebrandiana, Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, Cyanea marksii, 
Cyanea tritomantha, Cyrtandra nanawaleensis, Cyrtandra wagneri, 
Phyllostegia floribunda, Pittosporum hawaiiense, Platydesma remyi, 
Pritchardia lanigera, Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei, Schidea 
hawaiiensis, and Stenogyne cranwelliae; and the animals Drosophila 
digressa and Vetericaris chaceorum, from Hawaii Island as endangered 
species. These 15 species (13 plants, 1 anchialine pool shrimp, and 1 
picture-wing fly) are found in 10 ecosystem types: anchialine pool, 
coastal, lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, montane 
mesic, montane wet, dry cliff, and wet cliff (Table 2).

                 Table 2--The 15 Hawaii Island Species and the Ecosystems Upon Which They Depend
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                                                                          Species
                Ecosystem                -----------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                     Plants                             Animals
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Anchialine Pool.........................  ...........................  Vetericaris chaceorum.

[[Page 64640]]

 
Coastal.................................  Bidens hillebrandiana ssp.
                                           hillebrandiana.
Lowland Dry.............................  Bidens micrantha ssp.
                                           ctenophylla.
Lowland Mesic...........................  Pittosporum hawaiiense.....  Drosophila digressa.
                                          Pritchardia lanigera.......
Lowland Wet.............................  Cyanea marksii.............
                                          Cyanea tritomantha.........
                                          Cyrtandra nanawaleensis....
                                          Cyrtandra wagneri..........
                                          Phyllostegia floribunda....
                                          Platydesma remyi...........
                                          Pritchardia lanigera.......
Montane Dry.............................  Schiedea hawaiiensis.......
Montane Mesic...........................  Phyllostegia floribunda....  Drosophila digressa.
                                          Pittosporum hawaiiense.....
Montane Wet.............................  Cyanea marksii.............  Drosophila digressa.
                                          Cyanea tritomantha.........
                                          Phyllostegia floribunda....
                                          Pittosporum hawaiiense.....
                                          Platydesma remyi...........
                                          Pritchardia lanigera.......
                                          Schiedea diffusa ssp.
                                           macraei.
                                          Stenogyne cranwelliae......
Dry Cliff...............................  Bidens hillebrandiana ssp.
                                           hillebrandiana.
Wet Cliff...............................  Cyanea tritomantha.........
                                          Pritchardia lanigera.......
                                          Stenogyne cranwelliae......
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For each species, we identified and evaluated those factors that 
adversely impact the species and that may be common to all of the 
species at the ecosystem level. For example, the degradation of habitat 
by nonnative ungulates is considered a threat to all 15 species, and is 
likely a threat to many, if not most or all, of the native species 
within a given ecosystem. We consider such a threat factor to be an 
``ecosystem-level threat,'' as each individual species within that 
ecosystem faces a threat that is essentially identical in terms of the 
nature of the impact, its severity, its timing, and its scope. Beyond 
ecosystem-level threats, we further identified and evaluated threat 
factors that may be unique to certain species and that do not apply to 
all species under consideration within the same ecosystem. For example, 
the threat of predation by nonnative wasps is unique to the picture-
wing fly Drosophila digressa, and is not applicable to any of the other 
14 species. We have identified such threat factors, which apply only to 
certain species within the ecosystems addressed here, as ``species-
specific threats.''
    Please refer to the proposed rule (77 FR 63928; October 17, 2012) 
for a description of the island of Hawaii and associated map, and for a 
description of the 10 ecosystems on Hawaii Island that support the 15 
species. We have made minor revisions to our description of the 
anchialine pool ecosystem described in the proposed rule (77 FR 63928; 
October 17, 2012); therefore, we have included the revised version in 
its entirety in this final rule (see Hawaii Island Ecosystems, below).

Hawaii Island Ecosystems

    There are 12 different ecosystems (anchialine pool, coastal, 
lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, montane mesic, 
montane wet, subalpine, alpine, dry cliff, and wet cliff) recognized on 
the island of Hawaii. The 15 species addressed in this final rule occur 
in 10 of these 12 ecosystems (none of the 15 species are reported in 
subalpine and alpine ecosystems). The 10 Hawaii Island ecosystems that 
support the 15 species are described in the proposed rule (77 FR 63928; 
October 17, 2012), with the exception of a revised description of the 
anchialine pool ecosystem below; see Table 2 (above) for a list of the 
species that occur in each ecosystem type.
Anchialine Pools
    Anchialine pools are land-locked bodies of water that have indirect 
underground connections to the sea, contain varying levels of salinity, 
and show tidal fluctuations in water level. Anchialine pool habitats 
can be distinguished from similar systems (i.e., tidal pools) in that 
they are land-locked with no surface connections to water sources 
either saline or fresh, but have subterranean hydrologic connections to 
both fresh and ocean water where water flows through cracks and 
crevices, and remain tidally influenced (Holthuis 1973, p. 3; Stock 
1986, p. 91). Anchialine habitats are ecologically distinct and unique, 
and while widely distributed throughout the world, they only occur in 
the United States in the Hawaiian Islands (Brock 2004, pp. i, 2, and 
12). In Hawaii, the anchialine pool ecosystem has been reported from 
Oahu, Molokai, Maui, Kahoolawe, and Hawaii Island. In the Hawaiian 
Islands, there are estimated to be 600 to 700 anchialine pools, with 
the majority occurring on the island of Hawaii (Brock 2004, p. i). Over 
80 percent of the State's anchialine pools are found on the island of 
Hawaii, with a total of approximately 520 to 560 pools distributed over 
130 sites along all but the island's northernmost and steeper 
northeastern shorelines. Characteristic animal species include 
crustaceans (e.g., shrimps, prawns, amphipods, isopods, etc.), several 
fish species, mollusks, and other invertebrates adapted to the pools' 
surface and subterranean habitats (Brock 2004, p. i; The Nature 
Conservancy (TNC) 2009, pp. 1-3). Generally, vegetation within the 
anchialine pools consists of various types of algal forms (blue-green, 
green, red, and golden-brown). The majority of Hawaii's anchialine 
pools occur in bare or

[[Page 64641]]

sparsely vegetated lava fields, although some pools occur in areas with 
various groundcover, shrub, and tree species (Chai et al. 1989, pp. 2-
24; Brock 2004, p. 35). The anchialine pool shrimp in this final rule, 
Vetericaris chaceorum, occurs in this ecosystem (Kensley and Williams 
1986, pp. 417-437).

Description of the 15 Species

    Below is a brief description of each of the 15 species, presented 
in alphabetical order by genus. Plants are presented first, followed by 
animals.

Plants

    In order to avoid confusion regarding the number of locations of 
each species (a location does not necessarily represent a viable 
population, as in some cases there may only be one or a very few 
representatives of the species present), we use the word ``occurrence'' 
instead of ``population.'' Each occurrence is composed only of wild 
(i.e., not propagated and outplanted) individuals.
    Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana (kookoolau), a perennial 
herb in the sunflower family (Asteraceae), occurs only on the island of 
Hawaii (Ganders and Nagata 1999, pp. 275-276). Historically, B. 
hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana was known from two locations along 
the windward Kohala coastline, in the coastal and dry cliff ecosystems, 
often along rocks just above the ocean (Degener and Wiebke 1926, in 
litt.; Flynn 1988, in litt.). Currently, there are two known 
occurrences of B. hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana totaling 40 or 
fewer individuals along the windward Kohala coast, in the coastal and 
dry cliff ecosystems. There are 30 individuals on the Pololu seacliffs, 
and 5 to 10 individuals on the seacliffs between Pololu and Honokane 
Nui (Perlman 1998, in litt.; Perlman 2006, in litt.). Biologists 
speculate that this species may total as many as 100 individuals with 
further surveys of potential habitat along the Kohala coast (Mitchell 
et al. 2005b; PEPP 2006, p. 3).
    Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla (kookoolau), a perennial herb in 
the sunflower family (Asteraceae), occurs only on the island of Hawaii 
(Ganders and Nagata 1999, pp. 271, 273). Historically, B. micrantha 
ssp. ctenophylla was known from the north Kona district, in the lowland 
dry ecosystem (HBMP 2010b). Currently, this subspecies is restricted to 
an area of less than 10 square miles (sq mi) (26 square kilometers (sq 
km)) on the leeward slopes of Hualalai volcano, in the lowland dry 
ecosystem in 6 occurrences totaling fewer than 1,000 individuals. The 
largest occurrence is found off Hina Lani Road with over 475 
individuals widely dispersed throughout the area (Zimpfer 2011, in 
litt.). Another occurrence at Kealakehe was reported to have been 
abundant and common in 1992, but by 2010 had declined to low numbers 
(Whister 2007, pp. 1-18; Bio 2008, in litt.; HBMP 2010b; Whister 2008, 
pp. 1-11). In addition, there are three naturally occurring individuals 
in Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park (NHP) (Beavers 2010, in 
litt.), and three occurrences within close proximity to each other to 
the northeast of the park: Five individuals in an exclosure at 
Puuwaawaa Wildlife Sanctuary (HBMP 2010b); a few scattered individuals 
at Kaupulehu; and a few individuals on private land at Palani Ranch 
(Whistler 2007, pp. 1-18; Whistler 2008, pp. 1-11). Bidens micrantha 
ssp. ctenophylla has also been outplanted within Kaloko-Honokohau NHP 
(49 individuals), Koaia Tree Sanctuary (1 individual), and Puuwaawaa (5 
individuals) (Boston 2008, in litt.; HBMP 2010b; Billings 2012, in 
litt.).
    Cyanea marksii (haha), a shrub in the bellflower family 
(Campanulaceae), is found only on the island of Hawaii. Historically, 
C. marksii was known from the Kona district, in the lowland wet and 
montane wet ecosystems (Lammers 1999, p. 457; HBMP 2010e). Currently, 
there are 27 individuals distributed among 3 occurrences in south Kona, 
in the lowland wet and montane wet ecosystems (PEPP 2007, p. 61). There 
is an adult and 20 to 30 juveniles (each approximately 1 inch (in) 
(2.54 centimeters (cm) tall)) in a lava tube in the Kona unit of the 
Hakalau National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) (PEPP 2007, p. 61), 3 adult 
individuals and 6 seedlings in the Kaohe pit crater in the South Kona 
FR (Perry 2012, in litt.), and 25 individuals on private land in south 
Kona (PEPP 2007, p. 61; Bio 2011, pers. comm.). Fruit has been 
collected from the individuals on private land, and 11 plants have been 
successfully propagated at the Volcano Rare Plant Facility (VRPF) (PEPP 
2007, p. 61; Bio 2011, pers. comm.).
    Cyanea tritomantha (aku), a palmlike shrub in the bellflower family 
(Campanulaceae), is known only from the island of Hawaii (Pratt and 
Abbott 1997, p. 13; Lammers 2004, p. 89). Historically, this species 
was known from the windward slopes of Mauna Kea, Mauna Loa, Kilauea, 
and the Kohala Mountains, in the lowland wet, montane wet, and wet 
cliff ecosystems (Pratt and Abbott 1997, p. 13). Currently, there are 
16 occurrences of Cyanea tritomantha totaling fewer than 400 
individuals in the lowland wet, montane wet, and wet cliff ecosystems: 
10 occurrences (totaling fewer than 240 individuals) in the Kohala 
Mountains (Perlman 1993, in litt.; Perlman 1995a, in litt.; Perlman and 
Wood 1996, pp. 1-14; HBMP 2010f; PEPP 2010, p. 60); 2 occurrences 
(totaling fewer than 75 individuals) in the Laupahoehoe Natural Area 
Reserve (NAR) (HBMP 2010f; Bio 2011, pers. comm.); 1 occurrence (20 
adults and 30 juveniles) at Puu Makaala NAR (Perlman and Bio 2008, in 
litt.; Agorastos 2010, in litt.; HBMP 2010f; Bio 2011, pers. comm.); 1 
occurrence with 10 to 20 individuals off Tom's Trail in the Upper 
Waiakea Forest Reserve FR (Perlman and Bio 2008, in litt.; Perry 2012, 
in litt.); and 2 occurrences (totaling fewer than 11 individuals) in 
Olaa Tract in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park HVNP (Pratt 2007a, in 
litt.; Pratt 2008a, in litt.; Orlando 2012, in litt.). In 2003, over 75 
individuals were outplanted in HVNP's Olaa Tract and Small Tract; 
however, by 2010, less than one third of these individuals remained 
(Pratt 2011a, in litt.). In addition, a few individuals have been 
outplanted at Puu Makaala NAR and Upper Waiakea FR (Hawaii Department 
of Land and Natural Resources (HDLNR) 2006; Belfield 2007, in litt.; 
Agorastos 2010, in litt.). Cyanea tritomantha produces few seeds, and 
their viability tends to be low (Moriyasu 2009, in litt.)
    Cyrtandra nanawaleensis (haiwale), a shrub or small tree in the 
African violet family (Gesneriaceae), is known only from the island of 
Hawaii (Wagner and Herbst 2003, p. 29; Wagner et al. 2005a--Flora of 
the Hawaiian Islands database). Historically, C. nanawaleensis was 
known only from the Nanawale FR and the adjacent Malama Ki FR in the 
Puna district, in the lowland wet ecosystem (St. John 1987, p. 500; 
Wagner et al. 1988, in litt.; HBMP 2010g; Pratt 2011b, in litt.). 
Currently, C. nanawaleensis is known from 5 occurrences with 
approximately 160 individuals in the lowland wet ecosystem: 2 
occurrences in Malama Ki FR totaling 70 individuals (Lau 2011, pers. 
comm.); 1 occurrence in Keauohana FR (with 56 individuals) (Magnacca 
2011a, in litt.); 2 occurrences in the Halepuaa section of Nanawale FR 
(one with 28 mature and 65 immature plants at 200 feet (ft) (61 meters 
(m)) elevation, and a second occurrence with 9 mature and 57 immature 
plants at 270 ft (82 m)) (Johansen 2012, in litt.; Kobsa 2012, in 
litt.; Perry 2012, in litt.); and 1 occurrence with an unknown number 
of individuals on private lands in lower Puna (Perry 2012, in litt.). A 
total of

[[Page 64642]]

approximately 56 individuals have been outplanted in Halepuaa and 
Keauhana (Perry 2012, in litt.).
    Cyrtandra wagneri (haiwale), a shrub or small tree in the African 
violet family (Gesneriaceae), occurs only on the island of Hawaii 
(Lorence and Perlman 2007, p. 357). Historically, C. wagneri was known 
from a few individuals along the steep banks of the Kaiwilahilahi 
Stream in the Laupahoehoe NAR, in the lowland wet ecosystem (Perlman et 
al. 1998, in litt.). In 2002, there were 2 known occurrences totaling 
fewer than 175 individuals in the Laupahoehoe NAR: One occurrence 
(totaling 150 individuals (50 adults and 100 juveniles)) along the 
steep banks of the Kilau Stream (Lorence et al. 2002, in litt.; Perlman 
and Perry 2003, in litt.; Lorence and Perlman 2007, p. 359), and a 
second occurrence (with approximately 10 sterile individuals) along the 
slopes of the Kaiwilahilahi stream banks (Lorence and Perlman 2007, p. 
359). Currently, there are no individuals remaining at Kaiwilahilahi 
Stream, and the individuals at Kilau Stream appear to be hybridizing 
with the endangered Cyrtandra tintinnabula. Biologists have identified 
only eight individuals at Kilau Stream that express the true phenotype 
of Cyrtandra wagneri, and only three of these individuals are 
reproducing successfully (PEPP 2010, p. 102; Bio 2011, pers. comm.).
    Phyllostegia floribunda (NCN), a perennial herb in the mint family 
(Lamiaceae), is found only on the island of Hawaii (Wagner 1999, p. 
268; Wagner et al. 1999b, p. 815). Historically, P. floribunda was 
reported in the lowland wet, montane mesic, and montane wet ecosystems 
at scattered sites along the slopes of the Kohala Mountains; southeast 
through Hamakua, Laupahoehoe NAR, Waiakea FR, and Upper Waiakea FR; and 
southward into Hilo, HVNP, and Puna. One report exists of the species 
occurring from north Kona and a few occurrences in south Kona (Cuddihy 
et al. 1982, in litt.; Wagner et al. 2005b--Flora of the Hawaiian 
Islands database; Perlman et al. 2008, in litt.; HBMP 2010h; Bishop 
Museum 2011--Herbarium Database). Currently, there are 12 known 
occurrences of P. floribunda totaling fewer than 100 individuals, in 
the lowland wet, montane mesic, and montane wet ecosystems (Bruegmann 
1998, in litt.; Giffin 2009, in litt.; HBMP 2010h): 2 occurrences 
within HVNP, at Kamoamoa (1 individual) (HBMP 2010h) and near Napau 
Crater (4 individuals) (Pratt 2005, in litt.; Pratt 2007b, in litt.; 
HBMP 2010h); 1 occurrence behind the Volcano solid waste transfer 
station (10 to 50 individuals) (Flynn 1984, in litt.; Perlman and Wood 
1993--Hawaii Plant Conservation Maps database; Pratt 2007b, in litt.; 
HBMP 2010h); 1 occurrence (with an unknown number individuals) in the 
Wao Kele O Puna NAR (HBMP 2010h); 1 occurrence with 20 individuals in a 
fenced exclosure in the Upper Waiakea FR (Perry 2012, in litt.); at 
least 1 occurrence each (with a few individuals each) in the Puu 
Makaala NAR, Waiakea FR, and TNC's Kona Hema Preserve (PR) (Perry 2006, 
in litt.; Perlman 2007, in litt.; Giffin 2009, in litt.; PEPP 2008, pp. 
106-107; Perlman et al. 2008, in litt.; Pratt 2008a, in litt.; Pratt 
2008b, in litt.; Agorastos 2010, in litt.); 2 occurrences (each with an 
unknown number of individuals) from the South Kona FR; 1 occurrence 
(one individual) in the Kipahoehoe NAR; and 1 occurrence (with an 
unknown number of individuals) in the Lapauhoehoe NAR (Moriyasu 2009, 
in litt.; HBMP 2010h; Agorastos 2010, in litt.). Since 2003, over 400 
individuals have been outplanted at HVNP, Waiakea FR, Puu Makaala NAR, 
Honomalino in TNC's Kona Hema PR, and Kipahoehoe NAR (Bruegmann 2006, 
in litt.; HDLNR 2006, p. 38; Tangalin 2006, in litt.; Belfield 2007, in 
litt.; Pratt 2007b, in litt.; VRPF 2008, in litt.; VRPF 2010, in litt.; 
Bio 2008, in litt.; Agorastos 2010, in litt.). However, for reasons 
unknown, approximately 90 percent of the outplantings experience high 
seedling mortality (Pratt 2007b, in litt.; Van DeMark et al. 2010, pp. 
24-43).
    Pittosporum hawaiiense (hoawa, haawa), a small tree in the 
pittosporum family (Pittosporaceae), is known only from the island of 
Hawaii (Wagner et al. 1999c, p. 1,044). Historically, P. hawaiiense was 
known from the leeward side of the island, from the Kohala Mountains 
south to Kau, in the lowland mesic, montane mesic, and montane wet 
ecosystems (Wagner et al. 1999c, p. 1,044). Currently, there are 14 
known occurrences totaling fewer than 175 individuals, from HVNP to Puu 
O Umi NAR, and south Kona, in the lowland mesic, montane mesic, and 
montane wet ecosystems: 1 occurrence in Puu O Umi NAR (several 
scattered individuals) (Perlman 1995b, in litt.); 1 occurrence (with a 
least one individual) in TNC's Kona Hema PR (Oppenheimer et al. 1998, 
in litt.); 1 occurrence with 50 to 100 individuals at Kukuiopae in the 
South Kona FR (Perlman and Perry 2002, in litt.; Perry 2012, in litt.); 
1 occurrence (with a few individuals) in the Manuka NAR (Perry 2011, in 
litt.); 8 occurrences (totaling fewer than 58 individuals) scattered 
within the Kahuku unit of HVNP; 1 occurrence in the Olaa FR (at least 
one individual), just adjacent to the Olaa Tract in HVNP; and 1 
occurrence (with fewer than 6 individuals) at the Volcano solid waste 
transfer station (Wood and Perlman 1991, in litt.; McDaniel 2011a, in 
litt.; McDaniel 2011b, in litt.; Pratt 2011d, in litt.). Biologists 
have observed very low regeneration in these occurrences, which is 
believed to be caused, in part, by rat predation on the seeds (Bio 
2011, pers. comm.).
    Platydesma remyi (NCN), a shrub or shrubby tree in the rue family 
(Rutaceae), occurs only on the island of Hawaii (Stone et al. 1999, p. 
1210; USFWS 2010, pp. 4-66--4-67, A-11, A-74). Historically, P. remyi 
was known from a few scattered individuals on the windward slopes of 
the Kohala Mountains and several small populations on the windward 
slopes of Mauna Kea, in the lowland wet and montane wet ecosystems 
(Stone et al. 1999, p. 1210; HBMP 2010i). Currently, P. remyi is known 
from 8 occurrences totaling fewer than 40 individuals, all of which are 
found in the Laupahoehoe NAR or in closely surrounding areas, in the 
lowland wet and montane wet ecosystems: Along the banks of 
Kaiwilahilahi Stream in the Laupahoehoe NAR (unknown number of 
individuals) (Perlman and Perry 2001, in litt.; Bio 2008, in litt.; 
HBMP 2010i); near the Spencer Hunter Trail in the Laupahoehoe NAR 
(fewer than 17 individuals) (PEPP 2010, p. 102); in the central part of 
the Laupahoehoe NAR (5 to 6 scattered individuals) (HBMP 2010i); near 
Kilau (1 to 3 individuals) and Pahale (1 to 3 individuals) Streams in 
Laupahoehoe NAR; in the southeastern region of Laupahoehoe NAR (1 
individual); in the Hakalau unit of the Hakalau NWR (1 individual) 
(USFWS 2010, p. 4-74--4-75); and in the Humuula region of the Hilo FR 
(2 individuals) (Bruegmann 1998, in litt.; Bio 2008, in litt.; PEPP 
2008, p. 107; HBMP 2010i). According to field biologists, this species 
appears to be declining with no regeneration believed to be caused, in 
part, by rat predation on the seeds (Bio 2011, pers. comm.). In 2009, 
29 individuals of P. remyi were outplanted in Laupahoehoe NAR (Bio 
2008, in litt.). Their current status is unknown.
    Pritchardia lanigera (loulu), a medium-sized tree in the palm 
family (Arecaceae), is found only on the island of Hawaii (Read and 
Hodel 1999, p. 1,371; Hodel 2007, pp. 10, 24-25). Historically, P. 
lanigera was known from the Kohala Mountains, Hamakua district, 
windward slopes of Mauna Kea,

[[Page 64643]]

and southern slopes of Mauna Loa, in the lowland mesic, lowland wet, 
montane wet, and wet cliff ecosystems (Read and Hodel 1999, p. 1,371; 
HBMP 2010c). Currently, P. lanigera is known from 8 occurrences 
totaling fewer than 230 individuals scattered along the windward side 
of the Kohala Mountains, Kau FR, and TNC Kau Preserve, in the lowland 
mesic, lowland wet, montane wet, and wet cliff ecosystems. 
Approximately 100 to 200 individuals are scattered over 1 sq mi (3 sq 
km) in Waimanu Valley and surrounding areas (Wood 1995, in litt.; 
Perlman and Wood 1996, p. 6; Wood 1998, in litt.; Perlman et al. 2004, 
in litt.; HBMP 2010c). There are at least five individuals in the back 
rim of Alakahi Gulch in Waipio Valley (HBMP 2010c), and five 
individuals in the Kau FR (Perry 2013, in litt.) According to field 
biologists, pollination rates appear to be low for this species, and 
the absence of seedlings and juveniles at known locations suggests that 
regeneration is not occurring, which they believe to be caused, in 
part, by beetle, rat, and pig predation on the fruits, seeds, and 
seedlings (Bio 2011, pers. comm.; Crysdale 2013, pers. comm.).
    Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei (NCN), a perennial climbing herb in 
the pink family (Caryophyllaceae), is reported only from the island of 
Hawaii (Wagner et al. 2005c--Flowering Plants of the Hawaiian Islands 
database; Wagner et al. 2005d, p. 106). Historically, S. diffusa ssp. 
macraei was known from the Kohala Mountains, the windward slopes of 
Mauna Loa, and the Olaa Tract of HVNP, in the montane wet ecosystem 
(Perlman et al. 2001, in litt.; Wagner et al. 2005d, p. 106; HBMP 
2010j). Currently, there is one individual of S. diffusa ssp. macraei 
on the slopes of Eke in the Kohala Mountains, in the montane wet 
ecosystem (Wagner et al. 2005d, p. 106; Bio 2011, pers. comm.).
    Schiedea hawaiiensis (NCN), a perennial herb or subshrub in the 
pink family (Caryophyllaceae), is known only from the island of Hawaii 
(Wagner et al. 2005d, pp. 92-96). Historically, S. hawaiiensis was 
known from a single collection by Hillebrand (1888, p. 33) from the 
Waimea region, in the montane dry ecosystem (Wagner et al. 2005d, pp. 
92-96). Currently, S. hawaiiensis is known from 25 to 40 individuals on 
the U.S. Army's Pohakuloa Training Area (PTA) in the montane dry 
ecosystem, in the saddle area between Moana Loa and Mauna Kea (Gon III 
and Tierney 1996 in Wagner et al. 2005d, p. 92; Wagner et al. 2005d, p. 
92; Evans 2011, in litt.). In addition, there are over 150 individuals 
outplanted at PTA (Kipuka Alala and Kalawamauna), Puu Huluhulu, Puu 
Waawaa, and Kipuka Oweowe (Evans 2011, in litt.).
    Stenogyne cranwelliae (NCN), a vine in the mint family (Lamiaceae), 
is known only from the island of Hawaii. Historically, S. cranwelliae 
was known from the Kohala Mountains, in the montane wet and wet cliff 
ecosystems (Weller and Sakai 1999, p. 837). Currently, there are 6 
occurrences of S. cranwelliae totaling fewer than 160 individuals in 
the Kohala Mountains, in the montane wet and wet cliff ecosystems: 
Roughly 1.5 sq mi (2.5 sq km) around the border between the Puu O Umi 
NAR and Kohala FR, near streams and bogs (ranging from 3 to 100 
scattered individuals) (Perlman and Wood 1996, pp. 1-14; HBMP 2010k); 
Opaeloa, in the Puu O Umi NAR (3 individuals) (Perlman and Wood 1996, 
pp. 1-14; HBMP 2010k); Puukapu, in the Puu O Umi NAR (6-by-6-ft (2-by-
2-m) ``patch'' of individuals) (HBMP 2010k); the rim of Kawainui Gulch 
(1 individual) (Perlman and Wood 1996, pp. 1-14; HBMP 2010k); along 
Kohakohau Stream, in the Puu O Umi NAR (a few individuals) (Perlman and 
Wood 1996, pp. 1-14; HBMP 2010k); and Waimanu Bog Unit in the Puu O Umi 
NAR (a ``patch'' of individuals) (Agorastos 2010, in litt.)

Animals

    Drosophila digressa (picture-wing fly), a member of the family 
Drosophilidae, was described in 1968 by Hardy and Kaneshiro and is 
found only on the island of Hawaii (Hardy and Kaneshiro 1968, pp. 180-
1882; Carson 1986, p. 3-9). This species is small, with adults ranging 
in size from 0.15 to 0.19 in (4.0 to 5.0 mm) in length. Adults are 
brownish yellow in color and have yellow-colored legs and hyaline 
(shiny-clear) wings with prominent brown spots. Breeding generally 
occurs year round, but egg laying and larval development increase 
following the rainy season as the availability of decaying matter, 
which picture-wing flies feed on, increases in response to heavy rains. 
In contrast to most continental Drosophilidae, many endemic Hawaiian 
species are highly host-plant-specific (Magnacca et al. 2008, p. 1). 
Drosophila digressa relies on the decaying stems of Charpentiera spp. 
and Pisonia spp. for oviposition (to deposit or lay eggs) and larval 
substrate (Magnacca et al. 2008, pp. 11, 13; Magnacca 2013, in litt.). 
The larvae complete development in the decaying tissue before dropping 
to the soil to pupate (Montgomery 1975, pp. 65-103; Spieth 1986, p. 
105). Pupae develop into adults in approximately 1 month, and adults 
sexually mature 1 month later. Adults live for 1 to 2 months. The adult 
flies are generalist microbivores (microbe eating) and feed upon a 
variety of decomposing plant material. Drosophila digressa occurs in 
elevations ranging from approximately 2,000 to 4,500 ft (610 to 1,370 
m), in the lowland mesic, montane mesic, and montane wet ecosystems 
(Magnacca 2011a, pers. comm.). Historically, D. digressa was known from 
six sites: Moanuiahea pit crater on Hualalai, Papa in South Kona, 
Manuka FR, Kipuka 9 along Saddle Road, Bird Park in HVNP, and Olaa FR 
(Montgomery 1975, p. 98; Magnacca 2006, pers. comm.; HBMP 2010d; 
Magnacca 2011b, in litt.; Kaneshiro 2013, in litt.). Currently, D. 
digressa is known from only two locations, one population in the Manuka 
NAR within the Manuka FR, in the lowland mesic and montane mesic 
ecosystems, and a second population in the Olaa FR in the montane wet 
ecosystem (Magnacca 2011b, in litt.). The current number of individuals 
at each of these locations is unknown (Magnacca 2011b, in. litt.).
    Vetericaris chaceorum (anchialine pool shrimp) is a member of the 
family Procarididae, and is considered one of the most primitive shrimp 
species in the world (Kensley and Williams 1986, pp. 428-429). 
Currently known from only two locations on the island of Hawaii, V. 
chaceorum is one of seven described species of hypogeal (underground) 
shrimp found in the Hawaiian Islands that occur in anchialine pools 
(Brock 2004, p. 6). Relatively large in size for a hypogeal shrimp 
species, adult Vetericaris chaceorum measure approximately 2.0 in (5.0 
cm) in total body length, excluding the primary antennae, which are 
approximately the same length as the adult's body length (Kensley and 
Williams 1986, p. 419). The species lacks large chelapeds (claws) 
(Kensley and Williams 1986, p. 426), which are a key diagnostic 
characteristic of all other known shrimp species. V. chaceorum is 
largely devoid of pigment and lacks eyes, although eyestalks are 
present (Kensley and Williams 1986, p. 419). Observations of 
Vetericaris chaceorum indicate the species is a strong swimmer and 
propels its body forward in an upright manner with its appendages held 
in a basket formation below the body. Forward movement is produced by a 
rhythmic movement of the thoracic and abdominal appendages, and during 
capture of some specimens, V. chaceorum escape tactics included only 
forward movement and a notable lack of tail flicking, which would allow 
backward movement and which is common to other shrimp species

[[Page 64644]]

(Kensley and Williams 1986, p. 426). No response was observed when the 
species was exposed to light (Kensley and Williams 1986, p. 418).
    The feeding habits of Vetericaris chaceorum were unknown for 
decades with the only published data from Kensley and Williams (1986, 
p. 426), who reported that the gut contents of a captured specimen 
included large quantities of an orange-colored oil and fragments of 
other crustaceans, indicating that the species may be carnivorous upon 
its associated anchialine pool shrimp species. Sakihara (2012, in 
litt.) recently confirmed that V. chaceorum is carnivorous after 
observing V. chaceorum collected from Manuaka Natural Area Reserve 
actively feeding on Halocaridina rubra in the laboratory. In general, 
hypogeal shrimp occur within both the illuminated part of their 
anchialine pool habitat as well as within the cracks and crevices in 
the water table below the surface (Brock 2004, p. 6). The relative 
abundance of some Hawaii species is directly tied to food abundance 
(Brock 2004, p. 10). The lighted environment of anchialine pools offers 
refugia of high benthic productivity, resulting in higher population 
levels for the shrimp compared to the surrounding interstitial spaces 
often occupied by these species, albeit in lower numbers (Brock 2004, 
p. 10; Wada 2013, pers. comm.).
    Although over 400 of the estimated 520 to 560 anchialine pool 
habitats have been surveyed on the island of Hawaii, Vetericaris 
chaceorum has only been documented from two locations: Lua o Palahemo, 
which is a submerged lava tube located on the southernmost point of 
Hawaii Island in an area known as Ka Lae (South Point) (Kensley and 
Williams 1986, pp. 417-418; Brock 2004, p. 2; HBMP 2010), and at 
Manuka, where only recently V. chaceorum was discovered in a series of 
pristine shallow anchialine pool complexes within and adjacent to the 
NAR, approximately 15 mi (25 km) northwest of Lua o Palahemo (Sakihara 
2012, in litt.). The Service has concluded that the lack of detection 
of this species in the several hundred anchialine pools surveyed on the 
island of Hawaii since the 1970s suggests this species has a very 
limited range (Holthius 1973, pp. 1-128 cited in Sakihara 2012, pp. 83, 
91, and 93; Maciolek and Brock 1974, pp. 1-73; Maciolek 1983, pp. 606-
618; Kensley and Williams 1986, pp. 417-426; Maciolek 1987, pp. 1-23; 
Chai et al. 1989, pp. 1-37; Chan 1995, pp. 1-31; Brock and Kam 1997, 
pp. 1-109; Bozanic 2004, p. 1; Brock 2004, pp. 1-60; Sakihara 2009, pp. 
1-35; Sakihara 2012, pp. 83-95; Wada 2012, pers. comm.; Wada et al. 
2012, pp. 1-2; Sakihara 2013 in litt.). In total, only five individuals 
have been observed during one survey period in 1985 at Lua o Palahmo, 
and a total of seven individuals were observed in four pools during 
surveys conducted between 2009 and 2010 at Manuka. These two locations 
are described below.
    Lua o Palahemo Site: Age estimates for Lua o Palahemo range from as 
young as 11,780 years to a maximum of age of 25,000 years, based upon 
radio carbon data and timing of geophysical climatic events (Kensley 
and Williams 1986, pp. 417-418). Brock (2004, p. 18) states this lava 
tube is probably the second most important anchialine pool habitat in 
the State because of its unique connection to the ocean, the vertical 
size (i.e., depth), and the presence of a total of five different 
species including Halocaridina palahemo, H. rubra, Procaris hawaiiana, 
Calliasmata pholidota, and Vetericaris chaceorum. Lua o Palahemo is a 
naturally occurring opening (i.e., a surface collapse) into a large 
lava tube below. The opening measures approximately 33 ft (10 m) in 
diameter and is exposed to sunlight. Unlike most anchialine pools in 
the Hawaiian Islands, which have depths less than 4.9 ft (1.5 m) (Brock 
2004, p. 3), Lua o Palahemo's deep pool includes a deep shaft with 
vertical sides extending downward about 46 ft (14 m) into the lava tube 
below, which branches in two directions, both ending in blockages 
(Holthuis 1974, p. 11; Kensley and Williams 1986, p. 418). At the 
subterranean level at the base of the opening, the lava tube runs 
generally north and south, extending northward for 282 ft (86 m) and 
southward for 718 ft (219 m), to a depth of 108 ft (33 m) below sea 
level (Kensley and Williams 1986, p. 418).
    Manuka Site: The anchialine pools at Manuka were first surveyed 
1972 (Macioleck and Brock 1972, p. iii); however, this survey primarily 
covered only the southern extremity of the site. A more thorough survey 
of the Manuka coastline was conducted between 1989 and 1992 (20 pools 
along the southern coast of Manuka, which included both diurnal and 
nocturnal observations (Chan 1995, p. 1). These pools were then 
diurnally surveyed in 2004 (80 pools along the entire Manuka coastline) 
(Brock 2004, pp. 1-60), and again between 2008 and 2009 (80 pools along 
the entire Manuka coastline) (Sakihara 2009, pp. 1-35). The most recent 
and most comprehensive surveys of Manuka were conducted between 2009 
and 2010, when Hawaii State biologists surveyed 81 pools at Manuka both 
day and night, which resulted in the discovery of Vetericaris chaceorum 
in 4 of the pools surveyed. Three of the pools are within Manuka NAR, 
and one pool is adjacent to the NAR, on unencumbered State land 
(collectively referred to as Manuka throughout this final rule) 
(Sakihara 2013, in litt.). This discovery documents the first 
observation of this species in almost three decades (Sakihara 2012, in 
litt.). Visual accounts made by the biologists estimate that V. 
chaceorum is established in four anchialine pools along the southern 
section of the NAR, approximately 15 mi (25 km) from Lua o Palahemo. A 
total of seven individuals of this species were observed in four pools 
around Awili Point and Keawaiki (Sakihara 2012, p. 89; Sakihara 2013, 
in litt.), although estimates of the total number of individuals are 
undeterminable due to the cryptic nature of this species (Sakihara 
2012, in litt.). Sakihara (2012, in litt.) stated that the anchialine 
habitat at Manuka is considerably different than that of Lua o 
Palahemo, and is considered to be one of the most biologically valuable 
habitats of this type (Sakihara 2012, in litt.; Sakihara 2013, in 
litt.). The Manuka anchialine pools are characterized by shallow (less 
than 2 ft (0.5 m)) open pools dispersed throughout barren basaltic 
terrain. This observation expands the known habitat conditions that 
support V. chaceorum (Sakihara 2012, in litt.). According to Sakihara 
(2013, in litt.), it appears that three of the Manuka pools (the three 
pools closest to a jeep road) have a subterranean connection, although 
this has not been confirmed. Although anchialine pools have been 
surveyed in the Manuka area in the past (Maciolek and Brock 1974, pp. 
1-80; Chan 1995, pp. 1-34; Brock 2004, pp. i-iv; Sakihara 2009, pp. 1-
35; Sakihara 2012, pp. 83-95; Sakihara 2013 in litt.), the surveys 
conducted between 2009 and 2010 were the first to document the presence 
of V. chaceorum in this anchialine pool complex. In 1995, an anchialine 
pool shrimp matching the description of V. chaceorum was observed in at 
least one pool at Manuka NAR, but its identification was never 
confirmed (Brock 2004, p. 31; Sakihara 2012, p. 89).
    Four surveys have been conducted at Lua o Palahemo (Maciolek and 
Brock 1974, pp. 1-73; Kensley and Williams 1986, pp. 417-426; Bozanic 
2004, p. 1-3; Wada 2012, pers. comm.; Wada et al. 2012, pp. 1-2), with 
five individuals observed during one survey in 1985. Five surveys have 
been conducted at Manuka (Maciolek and Brock 1974, pp.

[[Page 64645]]

1-73; Chan 1995, pp. 1-34; Brock 2004, pp. i-iv, 1-60; Sakihara 2009, 
pp. 1-35; Sakihara 2012, pp. 83-95; Sakihara 2013 in litt.), with seven 
individuals observed in four pools between 2009 and 2010. Because of 
the ability of hypogeal shrimp species to inhabit the interstitial and 
crevicular spaces in the water table bedrock surrounding anchialine 
pools, it is very difficult to estimate population size of a given 
species within a given area (Brock 2004, pp. 10-11). We are unable to 
estimate the population size of either occurrence of Vetericaris 
chaceorum given this behavior.

Summary of Comments and Recommendations

    On October 17, 2012, we published a proposed rule to list 15 Hawaii 
Island species (13 plants, 1 picture-wing fly, and 1 anchialine pool 
shrimp) as endangered throughout their ranges, and to designate 
critical habitat for 3 plant species (77 FR 63928). The comment period 
for the proposal opened on October 17, 2012, for 60 days, ending on 
December 17, 2012. We requested that all interested parties submit 
comments or information concerning the proposed rule. We contacted all 
appropriate State and Federal agencies, county governments, elected 
officials, scientific organizations, and other interested parties and 
invited them to comment. In addition, we published a public notice of 
the proposed rule on October 20, 2012, in the local Honolulu Star 
Advertiser, West Hawaii Today, and the Hawaii Tribune Herald 
newspapers, at the beginning of the comment period. We received four 
requests for public hearings. On April 30, 2013, we published a 
document (78 FR 25243) reopening the comment period on the October 17, 
2012, proposed rule (77 FR 63928), announcing the availability of our 
draft economic analysis (DEA) on the proposed critical habitat, and 
requesting comments on both the proposed rule and the DEA. In addition, 
in that same document (78 FR 25243; April 30, 2013), we announced a 
public information meeting and hearing, which was held in Kailua-Kona, 
Hawaii, on May 15, 2013.
    During the comment periods, we received 33 comment letters, 
including the 11 peer review comment letters, on the proposed listing 
of 15 species, proposed taxonomic change for 1 endangered plant 
species, and proposed designation of critical habitat. In this final 
rule, we address only the comments regarding the proposed listing of 15 
species and proposed taxonomic change for 1 plant species. Comments 
addressing the proposed critical habitat designation will be fully 
addressed in a separate rulemaking action, and published in the Federal 
Register at a later date.
    Two commenters were State of Hawaii agencies ((1) Hawaii Department 
of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism's Hawaii Housing Finance 
and Development Corporation, and (2) Hawaii Department of Hawaiian Home 
Lands); one was a county agency (County of Hawaii Planning Department); 
two were Federal agencies; and 28 were nongovernmental organizations or 
individuals. During the May 15, 2013, public hearing, no individuals or 
organizations made comments on the proposed listing.
    All substantive information related to the listing of the 15 
species or the taxonomic change for 1 species provided during the 
comment periods has either been incorporated directly into this final 
determination or is addressed below. Comments received were grouped 
into general issues specifically relating to the proposed listing 
status of the 13 plants, or the picture-wing fly or anchialine pool 
shrimp, or the proposed taxonomic change for 1 plant species, and are 
addressed in the following summary and incorporated into the final rule 
as appropriate.

Peer Review

    In accordance with our peer review policy published in the Federal 
Register on July 1, 1994 (59 FR 34270), we solicited expert opinions 
from 14 knowledgeable individuals with scientific expertise on the 
Hawaii Island plants, picture-wing fly, and anchialine pool shrimp, and 
their habitats, including familiarity with the species, the geographic 
region in which these species occur, and conservation biology 
principles. We received responses from 11 of these peer reviewers. Nine 
of these 11 peer reviewers generally supported our methodology and 
conclusions. One peer reviewer expressed concern regarding the lack of 
more recent survey data for the anchialine pool shrimp at Manuka, and 
was unaware of the recent surveys (between 2009 and 2010) conducted by 
Hawaii State biologists. Another commented that we should proceed with 
caution due to the lack of biological information regarding the shrimp. 
Three peer reviewers supported the Service's ecosystem-based approach 
for organizing the rule and for focusing on the actions needed for 
species conservation and management, and all 11 reviewers provided 
information on one or more of the Hawaii Island species, which was 
incorporated into this final rule (see also Summary of Changes from 
Proposed Rule). We reviewed all comments received from the peer 
reviewers for substantive issues and new information regarding the 
listing of 15 species and taxonomic change for 1 plant species. Peer 
reviewer comments are addressed in the following summary and 
incorporated into the final rule as appropriate.
 Peer Review Comments on Plants
    (1) Comment: One peer reviewer recommended that we include 
inundation by high surf and subsequent erosion, and the nonnative plant 
Wedelia [Sphagneticola] trilobata (wedelia), as threats to the plant 
Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana.
    Our Response: We have incorporated this information, as 
appropriate, into Summary of Changes from Proposed Rule, Table 3, and 
in the sections ``Nonnative Plants in the Coastal Ecosystem'' and 
``Habitat Destruction and Modification Due to Rockfalls, Treefalls, 
Landslides, Heavy Rain, Inundation by High Surf, Erosion, and Drought'' 
under Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of Habitat or Range in this final rule (see below).
    (2) Comment: One peer reviewer recommended that we include 
vandalism and trash dumping as threats to the plant Bidens micrantha 
ssp. ctenophylla, in the Kaloko Makai area.
    Our Response: We are aware that vandalism and trash dumping has 
occurred in the Kaloko Makai area near the individuals of Bidens 
micrantha ssp. ctenophylla in the past, although it has not been 
recently observed (Ball 2013, pers. comm.). We will continue to monitor 
this potential threat in that area.
    (3) Comment: One peer reviewer informed us of an act of vandalism 
where approximately 150 ft (46 m) of fencing was removed from a fenced 
exclosure in the Upper Waiakea FR where individuals of the plant 
Phyllostegia floribunda are found. The fencing was repaired later in 
the same month (November 2012), and the plants appeared to suffer no 
adverse impacts.
    Our Response: We agree that vandalism is a potential threat to all 
fenced species. However, vandalism is not considered an imminent threat 
at this time because the frequency at which vandalism occurs and the 
degree of impact cannot be determined in advance of the incident 
occurring. We will continue to monitor the area and gather information 
on this potential threat.
    (4) Comment: One peer reviewer suggested that we identify the 
nonnative plant Paederia foetida (skunk weed) as a threat to the plant 
Cyrtandra

[[Page 64646]]

nanawaleensis because it completely covers and smothers understory 
vegetation and outcompetes low-growing plants and small shrubs for 
light and space and that we identify Psidium cattleianum (strawberry 
guava) as a threat to Cyanea tritomantha because it forms dense stands 
in which few other plants can grow, displacing native vegetation 
through competition.
    Our Response: We have included this information in this final rule 
(see Summary of Changes from Proposed Rule, below).
    (5) Comment: One peer reviewer supported the listing of the plants 
Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei, S. hawaiiensis, and Stenogyne 
cranwelliae as endangered, and stated that we did a very thorough job 
of outlining the threats for these three species. In addition, this 
peer reviewer expressed appreciation for our emphasis on the 
anticipated effects of climate change in the proposed rule.
    Our Response: We appreciate the support from this peer reviewer 
regarding our threats analysis, and our discussion on the anticipated 
threats from climate change. All 15 species we are listing in this 
final rule may be especially vulnerable to the effects of climate 
change due to their small number of populations and individuals, as 
well as highly restricted ranges. Environmental changes that may affect 
these species are expected to include habitat loss or alteration and 
changes in disturbance regimes (e.g., storms, hurricanes, and drought).
    (6) Comment: One peer reviewer stated that climate change appears 
to be having especially serious effects on Schiedea species occurring 
in dry habitats due to death of adult plants, presumably through 
drought, failure to regenerate due to drought, and increased fire 
frequency. Drought may have a pronounced effect on Schiedea 
hawaiiensis.
    Our Response: We agree that drought is a threat to Schiedea 
hawaiiensis, for the reasons mentioned above (see also ``Habitat 
Destruction and Modification by Fire'' and ``Habitat Destruction and 
Modification Due to Rockfalls, Treefalls, Landslides, Heavy Rain, 
Inundation by High Surf, Erosion, and Drought'' under Factor A. The 
Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of 
Habitat or Range, below).
    (7) Comment: One peer reviewer stated that Schiedea diffusa ssp. 
macraei and S. hawaiiensis are obligate autogamous species (i.e., 
reproduces by self-pollination) and facultative autogamous (i.e., 
reproduces by self- and cross-pollination), respectively. Because both 
of these species are hermaphroditic and autogamous, they are capable of 
regenerating from single individuals, and may not be severely hampered 
by inbreeding depression. Unfortunately, autogamous species of Schiedea 
also appear to be short-lived, emphasizing the importance of 
appropriate conditions for regeneration.
    Our Response: We agree that the obligate and facultative autogamous 
nature of Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei and S. hawaiiensis, 
respectively, in addition to being hermaphroditic, afford these species 
the ability to regenerate from single individuals and may not be 
severely hampered by inbreeding depression. However, there are other 
negative impacts that can result from low number of individuals (e.g., 
random demographic fluctuations; climate change effects; and localized 
catastrophes, such as hurricanes, drought, rockfalls, landslides, and 
disease outbreaks (Pimm et al. 1988, p. 757; Mangel and Tier 1994, p. 
607). Any of these stressors represent threats that can lessen the 
chances of survival for these species in the wild. We agree that the 
short-lived nature of these species increases the importance for 
appropriate conditions for regeneration, and have added this 
information to our files.
    (8) Comment: One peer reviewer pointed out that it was incorrect to 
state, in our proposed rule (77 FR 63928; October 17, 2012) on page 
63931, that Mezoneuron was listed in error as Caesalpinia kavaiense in 
50 CFR 17.12, because at the time of the listing (51 FR 24672; July 8, 
1986), this was the accepted name applied to the taxon. The peer 
reviewer stated that it is important to emphasize that names of taxa 
typically may change during the course of standard taxonomic 
investigations, and these changes do not affect the validity of 
conservation concerns for the taxon in question.
    Our Response: We wish to clarify the error described in the October 
17, 2012 (77 FR 63928), proposed rule regarding Mezoneuron kavaiense. 
The error described in the proposed rule refers to the entry in the 
1989 List of Endangered and Threatened Plants (50 CFR 17.12), where 
this taxon was revised and the specific epithet was misspelled as 
Caesalpinia kavaiense (instead of Caesalpinia kavaiensis). Subsequent 
taxonomic revision resulted in the currently recognized scientific name 
for the listed entity, Mezoneuron kavaiense, which we accept in this 
final rule.
    (9) Comment: One peer reviewer pointed out that under our 
description of the lowland dry ecosystem, we incorrectly wrote ``high 
rates of diversity and endemism'' when technically it should read 
``high levels of diversity and endemism,'' as rate is a process 
occurring over time.
    Our Response: We agree with the peer reviewer.
Peer Review Comments on the Picture-Wing Fly
    (10) Comment: One peer reviewer provided additional information 
regarding the host plants for Drosophila digressa. Although D. digressa 
has only been reared from Charpentiera spp., at Manuka, D. digressa was 
found in a Pisonia sandwicensis treefall with a considerable number of 
rotten branches. A large number of individuals of D. digressa were 
found in a small area, indicating a local breeding group rather than 
vagrant individuals. The only Charpentiera spp. in this area are a few 
trees in a pit crater, over 0.62 mi (1 km) from the known location of 
D. digressa on Pisonia sandwicensis. This reviewer further stated that 
many native Drosophila species that breed in either Charpentiera spp. 
or Pisonia spp. are also able to use both plants. According to the 
reviewer, while this ability of D. digressa to use both tree species as 
host plants expands its potential habitat slightly, it does not do so 
by a great deal, as Pisonia sandwicensis and P. brunoniana [two of the 
three species of Pisonia on Hawaii Island] are only found on Hawaii 
Island at the sites where D. digressa is already known (Olaa and 
Manuka), or where the forest is currently too open and dry to support 
this species of picture-wing fly (Kipuka Pualulu and Puu Waawaa cone). 
Pisonia umbellifera can be found at lower elevations on the windward 
side of the island, such as gulches on the east slopes of Kohala and 
Mauna Kea below 1,500 ft (457) m, but D. digressa has never been 
recorded from these areas or elevation. Species of Pisonia face most of 
the same threats as species of Charpentiera (i.e., goat and cattle 
browsing of leaves and seedlings, pig rooting of seedlings, and 
desiccation of habitat from drought and subsequent fires at Manuka). 
The reviewer concludes that even if Pisonia spp. at Manuka survive the 
[ongoing] drought, the habitat will likely be too dry to support D. 
digressa.
    Our Response: We appreciate this information regarding Drosophila 
digressa and have incorporated this new information, as appropriate, in 
this final rule (see above, Description of the 15 Species; see below, 
Summary of Changes from Proposed Rule, ``Habitat Destruction and 
Modification by Introduced Ungulates'' (Factor A. The Present or 
Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of Habitat or 
Range), ``Predation and Herbivory''

[[Page 64647]]

(Factor C. Disease or Predation), and ``Loss of Host Plants'' (Factor 
E. Other Natural or Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued 
Existence)).
    (11) Comment: One peer reviewer stated that the drought-associated 
ohia [Metrosideros polymorpha] dieback occurring at Manuka adversely 
affects Drosophila digressa by allowing more sunlight into the 
understory, increasing the temperature and lowering humidity. This 
increases the stress on the picture-wing flies and their host plants, 
as well as increasing opportunities for invasive plants to become 
established. The extraordinary amount of dead wood accumulation at 
Manuka means that any fire that occurs there likely would be extremely 
damaging. A fire resulting from a similar scenario at Kealakekua Ranch 
a year or two ago produced smoke that covered most of the island and 
burned for weeks because it is nearly impossible to fight fire in such 
dense brush.
    Our Response: We appreciate the additional information provided 
regarding the drought-associated ohia dieback at Manuka and Drosophila 
digressa, and we have included this new information in our final rule, 
as appropriate, in ``Habitat Destruction and Modification Due to 
Rockfalls, Treefalls, Landslides, Heavy Rain, Inundation by High Surf, 
Erosion, and Drought'' (Factor A. The Present or Threatened 
Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of Habitat or Range) in this 
final rule (see below).
Peer Review Comments on the Anchialine Pool Shrimp
    (12) Comment: One peer reviewer commented that the field surveys 
cited in our proposed rule are not adequate, and that more surveys 
should be conducted at other sites such as Manuka, Hawaii. The peer 
reviewer also recommended that the analysis of listing Vetericaris 
chaceorum as endangered should be based on the number of field surveys 
conducted, the number of pools surveyed, the number of locations 
surveyed, trapping surveys, day and night surveys, and seasonal 
surveys.
    Our Response: We are required to make listing determinations solely 
on the basis of the best scientific and commercial data available, and, 
for the reasons described here, we have concluded that the number and 
locations of surveys are adequate to determine that Vetericaris 
chaceorum appears to be restricted to a limited number of pools in the 
southern portion of the island of Hawaii, and that V. chaceorum faces 
threats from habitat degradation and destruction and from predation 
such that it is in danger of extinction throughout its range. There are 
between 600 and 700 anchialine pools in the Hawaiian Islands and 
approximately 80 percent (approximately 520 to 560) occur on Hawaii 
Island. Over 400 pools have been surveyed on Hawaii Island alone since 
the 1970s, and V. chaceorum has only been documented from two 
locations: Lua o Palahemo and Manuka, where V. chaceorum was recently 
(between 2009 and 2010) discovered in a series of pristine shallow 
anchialine pool complexes within and adjacent to Manuka NAR (Holthius 
1973, pp. 1-128 cited in Sakihara 2012, pp. 83, 91, and 93; Maciolek 
and Brock 1974, pp. 1-73; Maciolek 1983, pp. 606-618; Maciolek 1987, 
pp. 1-23; Chai et al. 1989, pp. 1-37; Chan 1995, pp. 1-31; Brock and 
Kam 1997, pp. 1-109; Brock 2004, pp. 1-60; Sakihara 2009, pp. 1-35; 
Sakihara 2012, pp. 83-95; Wada et al. 2012, pp. 1-2). This reviewer was 
apparently unaware that Hawaii State biologists conducted surveys at 
Manuka between 2008 and 2009, and again between 2009 and 2010 (Sakihara 
2009, pp. 1-35; Sakihara 2012, pp. 83-95). Several other peer reviewers 
stated that the Service used the best available scientific and 
commercial data to document the presence or absence of V. chaceorum in 
anchialine pools around Hawaii Island.
    Under the Act, we determine whether a species is an endangered 
species or a threatened species because of any of five factors (see 
Summary of Factors Affecting the 15 Species, below), and we are 
required to make listing determinations solely on the basis of the best 
scientific and commercial data available, pursuant to section 
4(b)(1)(A) of the Act. Based on the best available information we 
determined that V. chaceorum faces threats from habitat destruction and 
modification by feral goats and cattle at Lua o Palahemo; dumping of 
trash and introduction of nonnative fish at Lua o Palahemo; and 
introduction of nonnative fish at the pools at Manuka (see Summary of 
Factors Affecting the 15 Species, below).
    (13) Comment: One peer reviewer questioned the importance of 
flushing to the functioning of the anchialine pool ecosystem and its 
relationship to the effects of excessive siltation and sedimentation on 
the population of Vetericaris chaceorum and its associated species and 
the anchialine pool ecosystem at Lua o Palahemo. The commenter 
referenced the occurrence of large numbers of individuals of 
Halocaridina rubra, Procaris hawaiiana, and V. chaceorum during the 
1985 survey (Kensley and Williams 1985, pp. 417-426) despite a 
reduction in visibility (few centimeters) as a result of the 
disturbance of ceiling sediments caused by exhalation bubbles during an 
exit phase of a dive. The commenter also stated that ``there is no 
reason to discount the opposite idea that increased flushing has 
mobilized the sediment, allowed the movement of native predators and 
competitors into the system, and resulted in the decline or perhaps 
extirpation of Vetericaris.'' The commenter then suggested that the 
thick sediment cone just below the opening was not a problem for the 
dense populations of native species detected directly beneath the 
surface of the pool during the 1985 surveys.
    Our Response: We acknowledge the peer reviewer's statement that 
Vetericaris chaceorum and other native species may be able to coexist 
with a certain level sedimentation in the anchialine pool ecosystem at 
Lua o Palahemo. However, the water clarity has declined since earlier 
surveys (Kensley and Williams 1986, pp. 417-437; Bozanic 2004, pp. 1-3; 
Wada 2010, in litt.; Wada et al. 2012, in litt.; Wada 2012, pers. 
comm.; Wada 2013, in litt.), which took place in the 1970s and 1980s, 
despite the presence of silt in the system at that time. Further, we 
disagree that the reduced visibility created by a diver's exhalation 
bubbles or similar human-initiated disturbance during those early 
surveys is comparable to the low visibility levels apparent in recent 
surveys before surveyors even enter the water. Flushing is necessary 
for the successful functioning of an anchialine pool ecosystem (Brock 
2004, pp. 11, 35-36). We have concluded that continued excessive 
siltation into and additional collapse of the lava tube system at Lua o 
Palahemo is causing degradation of the anchialine pool ecosystem. These 
factors, combined with the system's diminished ability to flush, have 
resulted in the degradation of water quality, which has also led to the 
drastic decline in two of the other hypogeal shrimp species within the 
pool (i.e., Procaris hawaiiana numbered in the thousands, and 
Halocaridina numbered in the tens of thousands (Kensley and Williams 
1986, p. 418), and the most recent survey counted 7 Procaris hawaiiana 
and zero Halocaridina (Wada et al. 2012, in litt.; Wada 2013, pers. 
comm.)). These shrimp are considered food sources for V. chaceorum, and 
their decline may affect the survival of V. chaceorum.
    (14) Comment: One peer reviewer requested that the discussion of 
Lua o Palahemo clarify land ownership and the attitude of the landowner 
toward the anchialine pool and its fauna.
    Our Response: Lua o Palahemo is located on land owned by the State 
of

[[Page 64648]]

Hawaii Department of Hawaiian Homelands (DHHL). We hope to work with 
DHHL to address the threats to Vetericaris chaceorum and the anchialine 
pool ecosystem at Lua o Palahemo from ungulates, recreational vehicles, 
dumping of trash, the intentional introduction of nonnative fish, and 
sedimentation, as identified in this final rule.
    (15) Comment: One peer reviewer suggested that additional data on 
phylogenetic or biogeographical relationships on the ancestor(s) to 
Vetericaris chaceorum could have very important implications about the 
spatial extent of potential habitat, specific features of the habitat 
that may be critical to the species, and other possible sites where the 
species may occur. However, the peer reviewer also stated that this 
information is not currently available.
    Our Response: We agree that such information would provide 
additional insights on the species' distribution and range, as well as 
the physical and biological habitat features required for the 
conservation of Vetericaris chaceorum. However, as the peer reviewer 
noted, such information is not currently available. The documented 
observation of V. chaceorum less than 19 mi (25 km) from Lua o Palahemo 
in the shallow water pools at Manuka, Hawaii, may be explained by 
Maciolek's (1983, p. 615) hypothesis that habitats may be colonized 
from long-existing subterranean populations.
    (16) Comment: One peer reviewer suggested that we add nonnative 
plants (e.g., Prosopis pallida (kiawe)) as a threat to the anchialine 
pool shrimp Vetericaris chaceorum, as any nonnative canopy or 
peripheral vegetation may result in changes in anchialine habitat 
conditions such as increased senescence, changes in water quality, and 
potential increases in nutrient availability that may alter primary 
production and the community structure of the algae. This peer reviewer 
further stated that these impacts may primarily affect the predominant 
endemic faunal species Halocaridina rubra, which is considered to be a 
key species in maintaining the ecological integrity of the anchialine 
pools, and that this may ultimately lead to an overall degradation of 
the anchialine pool ecosystem, and therefore impact V. chaceorum. 
However, this peer reviewer also noted that both Lua o Palahemo and 
Manuka are either very sparse or entirely free of peripheral 
vegetation, but that this does not preclude the possibility of P. 
pallida or any other type of nonnative vegetation from establishing 
itself within these areas.
    Our Response: The Act and our regulations direct us to consider the 
``present'' or ``threatened'' destruction, modification, or curtailment 
of the species' habitat or range. At this time, there are insufficient 
data to determine the impacts on Vetericaris chaceorum from nonnative 
plants such as Prosopis pallida. Therefore, we cannot address nonnative 
plants as threats to V. chaceorum (i.e., we cannot identify a future 
condition that may or may not occur as a threat) in this final rule. We 
will consider the need to address nonnative plants in our future 
recovery planning efforts for this species, should new information 
become available indicating nonnative plants are a threat to V. 
chaceorum at Lua o Palahemo or Manuka.
    (17) Comment: Two peer reviewers suggested that we add native 
marine fish species (e.g., aholehole (Kuhlia sp.) or papio (Caranx 
sp.)) not normally found in anchialine pools as a threat to Vetericaris 
chaceorum, from either natural events (e.g., high surf and storm 
surges) or deliberate introduction by people to the Lua o Palahemo 
anchialine pool ecosystem. According to these reviewers, the 
introduction of native marine fish in anchialine pools could result in 
the same deleterious impacts to V. chaceorum and its pool habitat as 
the intentional introduction of nonnative fish (see ``Dumping of Trash 
and Introduction of Nonnative Fish'' under Factor E. Other Natural or 
Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued Existence, below). One peer 
reviewer later suggested that it was possible, although unlikely, that 
native marine fish would be intentionally introduced to the four pools 
at Manuka.
    Our Response: We agree that the introduction of native marine 
species, normally isolated from the anchialine pool environment, into 
the anchialine pool at Lua o Palahemo that supports Vetericaris 
chaceorum may be possible. For the reasons described below, we believe 
it is unlikely that natural events such as high surf and storm surges 
will introduce native marine fish to either location (Lua o Palahemo or 
Manuka) of V. chaceorum, although one peer reviewer suggested that the 
2005 earthquake on Hawaii Island may have reopened or improved the 
connection between the ocean and Lua o Palahemo, thus allowing natural 
recruitment of native marine fish into and out of the pool (Kinzie 
2012, in litt.). The intentional introduction of native marine fish is 
possible at its two known locations.
    Nonnative fish have been intentionally introduced to Lua o Palahemo 
in the past (see ``Dumping of Trash and Introduction of Nonnative 
Fish'' under Factor E. Other Natural or Manmade Factors Affecting Their 
Continued Existence, below), and it is not unreasonable to assume that 
native marine fish may be deliberately introduced to the pool. In our 
2012 snorkel survey of this pool, we observed a tropical marine goby in 
the pool (Wada et al. 2012, in litt.). However, it is unclear how this 
fish gained access to the pool. The accidental introduction or natural 
recruitment of native marine fish due to natural events such as storm 
surge and high surf is unlikely at Lua o Palahemo due to its elevation 
above the coast (approximately 25 ft (8 m)) and its distance from the 
coast (490 ft (150 m)) (Kensley and Williams 1986, p. 418). Although a 
massive landslide or earthquake may trigger a local tsunami that 
generates waves that may sweep over and deposit native marine fish in 
the pool, these events are purely speculative.
    The intentional introduction of native marine fish is possible at 
the Manuka pools that support V. chaceorum because there is evidence 
that at least one pool in this area harbors nonnative freshwater 
poeciliids (see Factors Affecting the 15 Species, below) and marine 
fish, likely introduced by fishermen. This pool is located near a 
popular coastal fishing spot. Three of the four pools that support V. 
chaceorum at Manuka are located between 10 and 33 ft (3 and 10 m) from 
a jeep road that provides access to coastal fishing and recreational 
locations frequented by the public (Sakihara 2013, in litt.). The 
fourth pool is approximately 60 ft (18 m) from the jeep road (Sakihara 
2013, in litt.). However, the accidental introduction or natural 
recruitment of native marine fish, due to natural events such as storm 
surge and high surf, is unlikely at the four pools that support V. 
chaceorum at Manuka because these pools are located at least 98 ft (30 
m) from the coast (Sakihara 2013, in litt.), and storm surge and high 
surf that would cover this distance is improbable. Although a massive 
landslide or earthquake may trigger a tsunami that generates waves that 
may sweep over and deposit native marine fish in the pools, these 
events are purely speculative.
    On Maui, both aholehole and papio have been found in the larger 
anchialine pools closest to the ocean at Ahihi Kinau NAR, where high 
surf and storm waves appear to wash those and other native marine fish 
into the pools (Wada 2013, in litt.). However, these pools are

[[Page 64649]]

subject to coastal influences due to natural events such as storm surge 
and high surf due to their proximity to the ocean. We are unaware of 
any data documenting the impacts of native marine fish that may be 
swept into the pools at Ahihi Kinau NAR on native anchialine pool 
shrimp.
    Native marine fish species have a purely marine (pelagic) larval 
stage, so a population of native fishes in an anchialine pool is likely 
to be individuals that are introduced to pools post larvae-stage 
(Sakihara 2013, in litt.). According to Brock (2004, p. 9), native 
marine fish are typically found in pools in close proximity to the 
ocean and it is believed that the biological status of these pools 
changes with successful colonization or mortality of marine fishes in 
these pools. The presence of native fish in Hawaiian anchialine pools 
usually signals the lack of hypogeal shrimp (Brock 2004, p. 9). Brock 
(2004, p. 29) also states that native marine fish are not able to 
complete their life cycles in anchialine pools, so the impacts to 
hypogeal shrimp are temporary (i.e., only as long as the fish occupy 
the pool) and that hypogeal shrimp may successfully hide in crevices 
from predatory fish and thus possibly recolonize a pool after the fish 
die off. Therefore, although V. chaceorum is a hypogeal shrimp and 
three species upon which it is known to feed in Lua o Palahemo are 
hypogeal shrimp, we are unable to determine the impact of marine fish 
on V. chaceorum at this time.
    (18) Comment: Two peer reviewers mentioned the presence of 
aggressive biting isopods and an eel at Lua o Palahemo, and the 
possibility of the eel, specifically, as a predator of Vetericaris 
chaceorum.
    Our Response: We are aware that eels have been seen periodically in 
other anchialine pools, including pools at Manuka NAR on Hawaii Island 
and Ahihi Kinau on Maui. At this time, however, there are insufficient 
data to determine the impacts on Vetericaris chaceorum from biting 
isopods and an unidentified eel at Lua o Palahemo. Therefore, we are 
unable to address these animals as threats to V. chaceorum in this 
final rule. We will consider the need to address biting isopods and 
eels in our future recovery planning efforts for this species, should 
new information become available indicating these animals are threats 
to V. chaceorum.
    (19) Comment: Two peer reviewers suggested that earthquakes and 
subsequent landslides and rockfalls are threats to Vetericaris 
chaceorum, due to destruction or degradation of its pool habitat. This 
peer reviewer believes that given a large enough earthquake, the Lua o 
Palahemo anchialine pool could potentially lose its connection to the 
ocean by boulder ``chokes'' that block off movement of ocean water to 
and from the pool, or by a complete or partial collapse of the tube 
itself. This peer reviewer then added that we would need an engineer to 
make a more definitive assessment regarding the pool's vulnerability to 
collapse.
    Our Response: We agree that earthquakes and subsequent landslides 
and rockfalls are potential threats to Vetericaris chaceorum and its 
habitat. We also agree that an engineer or other professional with the 
necessary skills is needed to assess the vulnerability of the lava 
tubes within the Lua o Palahemo anchialine pool to the threat of 
earthquakes. We do not have enough data to include earthquakes as a 
threat at this time.
    (20) Comment: Two peer reviewers commented that our analysis of the 
threats to Vetericaris chaceorum seemed too focused on the surface of 
the anchialine pool rather than on the depths within Lua o Palahemo 
(where V. chaceorum is reported to occur). One of the peer reviewers 
questioned the relevance of threats at the opening when the species is 
so far below the surface, while the other peer reviewer stated that any 
impacts at the surface of the pool may lead to degradation of the 
habitat within the recesses of the lava tube by causing shifts in water 
quality, physical conditions, and flushing, and therefore causing 
shifts in biological characteristics (i.e., benthic algae and primary 
consumer abundance and assemblage). As such, these threats may extend 
beyond the immediately impacted areas at Lua o Palahemo.
    Our Response: Based on the best scientific and commercial data 
available, we believe Vetericaris chaceorum faces threats from habitat 
loss or degradation from sedimentation in Lua o Palahemo due to 
degradation of the immediate area surrounding the pool. Feral goats and 
cattle trample and forage on both native and nonnative plants around 
and near the pool opening (Magnacca 2012, in litt.; Richardson 2012, in 
litt.), increasing erosion resulting in sediment entering the pool (see 
``Habitat Destruction and Modification by Introduced Ungulates'' under 
Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of Habitat or Range, below). In addition, V. chaceorum 
faces threats from the intentional dumping of trash (at Lua o Palahemo) 
and introduction of nonnative fish (at Lua o Palahemo and Manuka NAR), 
activities which originate at the pool openings and result in impacts 
to V. chaceorum (within the deep recesses of Lua o Palahemo and within 
the shallower pools at Manuka NAR) (see ``Dumping of Trash and 
Introduction of Nonnative Fish'' under Factor E. Other Natural or 
Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued Existence, below).
    (21) Comment: One peer reviewer commented that the proposed rule 
presents a good summary of potential threats to the shrimp and its 
habitat, and it clearly makes the point that the population at Lua o 
Palahemo is exceedingly small and probably declining, if not extinct.
    Our Response: We appreciate this reviewer's concurrence and have 
considered that the shrimp may no longer be extant at Lua o Palahemo; 
however, since anchialine pool shrimp are known to spend much of their 
time within the crevices of pools, we believe the species may still be 
present in the pool, but in very low numbers.
    (22) Comment: One peer reviewer commented that they had observed 
items that humans dumped into Lua o Palahemo, including a bicycle, boom 
box, and large cement block, but that they were uncertain whether or 
not these items had a deleterious or observable effect on V. chaceorum.
    Our Response: The impact of human dumping of trash into an 
anchialine pool is directly related to the proportion between the size 
of the pool and the amount and type of trash dumped. For example, a 
large trash bag in a small, shallow anchialine pool will negatively 
impact habitat quality, whereas the negative effect from same trash bag 
in a larger, deeper anchialine pool will not reach the same magnitude 
of effect. In addition, if the boom box had decaying batteries in it, 
contaminants such as lead, mercury and cadmium could have leached into 
the pool (Center for Disease Control--Agency for Toxic Substances and 
Disease Registry (CDC-ATSDR) 2011--Toxic Substance Database). In 
addition, there is risk from exposure to general electronic waste 
contaminants, which contain various hazardous materials and are harmful 
to the environment (e.g., polyvinyl chloride, polychlorinated 
biphenyls, and chromium) (CDC-ATSDR 2011--Toxic Substance Database). 
These toxins produce varying effects on biological organisms that 
include, but are not limited to, deoxyribose nucleic acid (DNA) damage, 
mucous membrane damage, cancer, and organ failure (CDC-ATSDR 2011--
Toxic Substance Database).
    (23) Comment: Five peer reviewers commented on the likelihood of

[[Page 64650]]

whether or not Vetericaris chaceorum has a niched habitat deep within 
the darkness of the lava tube at Lua o Palahemo where it was observed 
in 1985, or whether it has a broader habitat that extends throughout 
the matrix of the lava tube of Lua o Palahemo. The first of these peer 
reviewers commented that, due to insufficient data and the challenging 
conditions of assessing the particular habitat(s) of Lua o Palahemo, it 
would be difficult to determine whether this species would likely occur 
throughout Lua o Palahemo or only be limited to the area where it was 
originally collected from within the lava tube. The second peer 
reviewer commented that literature suggested that Vetericaris chaceorum 
did not have a uniform distribution throughout Lua o Palahemo when it 
was first observed and collected, so that would suggest that it does 
have a limited niche and that it is highly likely that it would be 
still limited to the area where it was originally collected within the 
lava tube. The third of these peer reviewers commented that it has been 
confirmed that the range of Vetericaris chaceorum extends beyond Lua o 
Palahemo, although only approximately 25 km away. Therefore, it is 
plausible that its distribution within Lua o Palahemo also extends 
beyond where it was originally collected. Furthermore, the habitat in 
which Vetericaris chaceorum was found at Manuka is considerably 
different than that of Lua o Palahemo, which was characterized by 
shallow (less than 0.5 m deep), open pools dispersed throughout barren 
basaltic terrain. Accordingly, its range does not seem to be limited to 
the deep recesses of the anchialine habitat, but may also roam freely 
throughout shallow exposed areas. The fourth peer reviewer commented 
that Vetericaris chaceorum likely has a wider lateral distribution in 
the Lua o Palahemo lava tube and that it is likely found in adjacent 
hypogeal habitat. The fourth peer reviewer also commented that it is 
unclear if Vetericaris chaceorum venture into the lighted, mixohaline 
portion of Lua o Palahemo. The fifth peer reviewer commented that there 
is no reason to believe that the shrimp's range did not extend, at 
least, to the ends of that lava tube, and possibly into other openings 
connecting to it. As the boundaries of Lua o Palahemo were not defined 
in the proposed rule, an answer to the question about ``throughout Lua 
o Palahemo'' is not clear.
    Our Response: We agree and are aware that it is difficult to know 
exactly where this species occurs within Lua o Palahemo, and whether or 
not it favors the depth at which it was observed or if it utilizes the 
greater part of the lava tube. The newly discovered occurrence in the 
shallow pools at Manuka suggests that the habitat is not limited to the 
area it was originally collected from deep within the lava tube at Lua 
o Palahemo, and that it is likely Vetericaris chaceorum occupies areas 
along the matrices of Lua o Palahemo at varying depths. Because 
hypogeal shrimp often spend much of their time in crevices, and it is 
possible that V. chaceorum can occur throughout the lava tube, we 
retain the status of extant for the population of V. chaceorum at this 
location, despite the fact that V. chaceorum was not observed in recent 
surveys. Regarding the boundaries of Lua o Palahemo, we do not 
currently have any data that lay out the entire matrix of the lava 
tube, nor are we aware that such data exist.
    (24) Comment: Three peer reviewers commented that the threats to 
the habitat of Lua o Palahemo expand throughout the entire lava tube 
matrix. One of these three peer reviewers also said that the historical 
differences documented for Lua o Palahemo, primarily in water clarity 
and quality, and the absence of other shrimp species that were common 
(such as Halocaridina) suggests the habitat has undergone serious 
degradation in the last 30 to 40 years that is likely to get worse if 
actions are not taken.
    Our Response: We agree that the threats to the species' habitat at 
Lua o Palahemo are not limited to any particular area and span the 
scope of the entire lava tube matrix. We also agree that more surveys 
and monitoring efforts are needed to determine how best to recover this 
habitat. The Service has conducted surveys in 2010 and 2012 (Wada 2012, 
pers. comm.; Wada et al. 2012, in litt.), and will continue to monitor 
and research this habitat in the future, in addition to conservation 
methodologies to recover Vetericaris chaceorum at this site.
    (25) Comment: One peer reviewer commented that it is unclear that 
the best available scientific data and methodologies currently 
available can determine rarity vs. human accessibility to the 
Vetericaris chaceorum. This commenter also stated that a dark-adapted 
organism could potentially be found anywhere within the hypogeal 
environment of the Hawaiian Islands, and that the Service may be 
drawing its listing conclusion of this species based on lack of 
biological knowledge. In addition, this reviewer commented that the 
lack of information may not enable practical management decisions.
    Our Response: We agree that it is difficult to determine the entire 
range that is occupied by Vetericaris chaceorum on Hawaii Island or 
elsewhere in the Hawaiian Islands. We have based our determination on 
the number of estimated pools throughout the Hawaiian Islands and the 
percentage of these pools that have been surveyed. Despite surveys 
throughout the islands, Vetericaris chaceorum has only been observed in 
two pool complexes on Hawaii Island: Lua o Palahemo and Manuka. In 
addition, the fact that these two habitats are so different informs us 
that Vetericaris chaceorum is not solely a dark-adapted organism, but 
that it is has a range of suitable habitat that also includes shallow 
pools in full sunlight. This increase in suitable habitat types, the 
number of surveys throughout the Hawaiian Islands, and the fact that in 
total only 12 shrimp (5 at Lua o Palahemo and 7 at Manuka) have ever 
been observed suggest that Vetericaris chaceorum is not occurring in 
high numbers. We do not currently have methodologies that afford us the 
opportunity to search cracks and crevices within the anchialine pool 
environment; however, if this type of survey technology equipment 
becomes available, it will certainly enhance our understanding of the 
population dynamics of hypogeal shrimp, including Vetericaris 
chaceorum. The Service agrees that additional information will benefit 
management decisions.
    (26) Comment: Two peer reviewers commented on the connection of Lua 
o Palahemo to the marine environment. One of these reviewers commented 
that the further collapse of the lava tube and increased siltation may 
have the effect of decreasing the slight flow of colder water into the 
depth of the lava tube, and that the further collapse may actually have 
a beneficial effect, such as isolation from human access. The second 
peer reviewer commented that the lava tube may be connected to a deep 
water marine habitat and associated fauna.
    Our Response: Kensley and Williams (1986, p. 435) state that it is 
probable that neither temperature nor salinity imposes a barrier to the 
dispersal of hypogeal shrimp. They reported a surface temperature of 24 
degrees Celsius, but they did not report the temperature at the depth 
they observed Vetericaris chaceorum (Kensley and Williams 1986, p. 
418). During the surveys conducted by the Service in 2012, the 
temperature of the water at a depth of 7.5 m from the surface ranged 
from 23.8 degrees Celsius at noon to 26.4 Celsius at 4:50 a.m. (Wada et 
al. 2012, in litt.). The data suggest

[[Page 64651]]

temperature is not currently a determining factor in the presence or 
absence of Vetericaris chaceorum at Lua o Palahemo.
    The definition of an anchialine pool includes being tidally 
influenced due to a subterranean connection to the ocean, so we agree 
that the lava tube is connected to a marine habitat and fauna, although 
to what extent and what depth is not known at this time. The size 
(i.e., a smaller cracks versus a wide diameter lava tube) of the 
connection to the marine environment will determine to some extent the 
species present in a given anchialine pool; the better the connection 
to the sea, the more likely a pool will have marine organisms (Brock 
2004, p. 9). For example, the unusual ecotypic variant of the moray eel 
(Gymnothorax pictus, puhi) is often found in pools with better 
connections to the sea (Brock 2004, p. 9). Regarding relationship 
between a further collapse of the lava tube and human access, we have 
no data to support or deny a benefit from limiting human access to the 
depths of Lua o Palahemo.
    (27) Comment: One peer reviewer commented that since so little is 
known about Vetericaris chaceorum, most considerations of threats are 
conjectural, and that because no apparent observations have been made 
of this species in the upper reaches of Lua o Palahemo, purported 
threats to other anchialine species may not be a limiting factor or 
relevant to life in the lightless marine environment.
    Our Response: As described earlier, Vetericaris chaceorum was 
initially discovered in 1985, in complete darkness within one of the 
lava tubes at Lua o Palahemo, at a location 180 m (590 ft) from the 
opening, at a depth of 30 m (98 ft). We agree that there is still much 
to be learned about V. chaceorum's life history and biology. It was 
recently confirmed that the species is not confined to the dark depths 
of Lua o Palahemo. In addition, Sakihara (2013, in litt.) observed V. 
chaceorum feeding on other anchialine pool shrimp species. Considering 
the new information, threats to other anchialine pool shrimp at varying 
depths are directly relevant to the survival of V. chaceorum. If the 
food supply of V. chaceorum is declining or diminished, it will have a 
direct impact on the health and survival of V. chaceorum. Further, the 
threats of dumping nonnative fish and trash can directly negatively 
impact the ecosystem at either Lua o Palahemo or Manuka; this is 
confirmed by observations at other anchialine pools around the Hawaiian 
Islands where nonnative fish and trash have caused the degradation of 
pools (Brock 2004, pp. 12-15).
    (28) Comment: One peer reviewer questioned the value of comparing 
Vetericaris chaceorum with the anchialine pool shrimp Halocaridina 
rubra. This peer reviewer commented that Vetericaris chaceorum is 
likely much more specialized and that its lack of eyes, limited 
swimming option, and, as far as is known, very limited distribution 
makes comparisons between the two species uninformative for the most 
part. This peer reviewer further stated that the observations on the 
behavior of V. chaceorum suggests it may prey on smaller organisms by 
capturing them in the basket formed by its pereiopods as it swims in 
the dark; if this is true, the species would require large volumes of 
open water. The reviewer further elaborates that Kensley and Williams 
(1986) note the species is a strong swimmer and apparently stays in 
midwater, avoiding the solid walls, consistent with the filter-basket 
feeding hypothesis. If true, this makes this species somewhat different 
from other anchialine shrimp, which are generally associated with the 
substratum, although Maciolek observed H. rubra feeding in midwater 
``presumably grazing only on phytoplankton.'' Similarly V. chaceorum 
does not appear to be very similar to the more well-studied anchialine 
shrimp. Its troglobitic (more correctly stygobitic) habit, large size, 
possibly its specialized trophic role and potentially unique 
evolutionary history should make comparisons with other anchialine 
shrimp suspect.
    Our Response: We appreciate this reviewer's comments regarding the 
value of comparing Vetericaris chaceorum and Halocaridina rubra. We 
agree that these two shrimp are not exactly the same; however, H. rubra 
is the most well-studied anchialine pool shrimp in the Hawaiian 
Islands, and, therefore, we used it as a surrogate species in some 
examples for V. chaceorum in regards to the negative impacts associated 
with human dumping of nonnative fish and trash, in addition to 
recognizing it as a potential food source for V. chaceorum. The newly 
discovered population of V. chaceorum in the four shallow pools at 
Manuka has broadened our understanding of the range and habitat for 
this species, debunking the thoughts that this species is niched to the 
dark depths of Lua o Palahemo. Further, this challenges the above 
hypothesis that this species may require large volumes of open water. 
As stated in the comments above, we have much to learn about V. 
chaceorum, and we base our action in this rule on the fact that the 
habitat is threatened by sedimentation, recreational off-road vehicles, 
human dumping of nonnative fish, and human dumping of trash.
    (29) Comment: One peer reviewer commented that poeciliids are not 
only introduced illegally in Hawaii, State agencies introduce mosquito 
fish to freshwater and anchialine habitats as mosquito control. While 
perhaps legal, the effects are just as detrimental. However, the peer 
reviewer did not think that mosquito control is a concern for a site 
like Lua o Palahemo.
    Our Response: We agree that mosquito control is not a concern at 
Lua o Palahemo, and we have no information that would indicate that 
State agencies are introducing nonnative fish at Manuka for mosquito 
control.
    (30) Comment: The proposed rule states that reduced flushing in the 
pool portion of Lua o Palahemo may allow an accumulation of sediment 
and detritus in the pool, reducing food productivity and the ability of 
Vetericaris chaceorum to move between the pool and water table. One 
peer reviewer commented there is no reason to discount the opposite 
idea that increased flushing has mobilized the sediment, allowed the 
movement of native predators and competitors into the system, and 
resulted in the decline or perhaps extirpation of V. chaceorum. In 
support of this is the statement in the October 17, 2012, proposed rule 
at 77 FR 63939: ``During those dives, researchers made five 
observations of Vetericaris chaceorum in total darkness at a depth of 
108 ft (33 m) and 590 ft (180 m) from the opening, collecting two 
specimens. Kensley and Williams (1986, p. 418) noted, however, that the 
area surveyed directly beneath the surface of the pool contained the 
highest density of animals (e.g., shrimps and crustaceans).'' This 
suggests the very thick sediment cone just below the opening was not a 
problem for the dense populations of native species. All this just 
shows that there is an exceedingly limited understanding of how the 
system functions, and specifically what physical, chemical, and 
hydrologic aspects of the system promote sustaining V. chaceorum and 
its associated species. This commenter suggested that a high level of 
sediment is not, per se, deleterious to the shrimp, other anchialine 
pool species, and, by inference, the entire pool.
    Our Response: We agree it is possible that increased flushing 
allowed the movement of native predators and competitors into the 
system, resulting in the decline or perhaps extirpation of Vetericaris 
chaceorum at Lua o

[[Page 64652]]

Palahemo; however, we are unaware of any data to support this 
hypothesis. Recent surveys by the Service and State (Wada 2012, pers. 
comm.; Wada et al. 2012, in litt.) have found the degradation of 
habitat of Lua o Palahemo is a result of excessive siltation and 
sedimentation of the anchialine pool system, combined with the 
diminished ability of the system to flush, which Brock (2004, pp. 11, 
35-36) described as necessary for a functioning anchialine pool system. 
Long-term sedimentation accumulation leads to the senescence of 
anchialine pools (Ramsey 2013, in litt.). Suspended sediment within the 
water column of Lua o Palahemo likely reduces the capacity of the pool 
to produce adequate cyanobacteria and algae to support some of the 
pool's herbivorous hypogeal species. A decreased food supply (i.e., a 
reduction in cyanobacteria and algae) would likely lead to a lower 
abundance of herbivorous hypogeal shrimp species, as well as a lower 
abundance of the known carnivorous species (i.e., Vetericaris 
chaceorum). Because lower numbers of the herbivorous hypogeal shrimp 
have been observed over time, the data indicate this is a contributing 
to, but not necessarily the sole factor in, the lack of detection of 
Vetericaris chaceorum at Lua o Palahemo.
    (31) Comment: One peer reviewer commented that Lua o Palahemo 
should not be treated as a typical anchialine pool. Rather it is a 
singular system, or perhaps somewhat like Lake Kauhako. Extrapolating 
from the little we know about typical anchialine systems will probably 
not be productive.
    Our Response: Anchialine pools are land-locked bodies of water that 
have indirect underground connections to the sea, contain varying 
levels of salinity, and show tidal fluctuations in water level. Lua o 
Palahemo meets this definition. Further, Lua o Palahemo has floral and 
faunal characteristics of an anchialine pool ecosystem (see Hawaii 
Island Ecosystems and Description of the 15 Species, above). Lake 
Kauhako is situated in the crater of an extinct, late Pleistocene 
volcano on the north shore of Molokai, Hawaii, and reportedly not 
tidally influenced, although early data suggested it may have been at 
one time and anchialine pool shrimp were observed here in 1982 
(Maciolek 1982, p. 12; Donachie et al. 1999, p. 93). Lake Kauhako is 
considered one of the deepest lakes in the United States with a depth 
of 814 ft (248 m) (Donachie et al. 1999, p. 93). Lake Kauhako is also 
meromictic (has layers of water that do not intermix) and anoxic 
(lacking dissolved oxygen) below 6 ft (2 m); Lua o Palahemo has not 
been classified as meromictic and is not noted as anoxic until a depth 
of 98 ft (30 m) and a distance of 180 m into one of the branches of the 
lava tube from the base of the surface opening (Kensley and Williams 
1986, pp. 417-20). Both Lake Kauhako and Lua o Palahemo do have 
comparable surface dissolved oxygen and salinity and temperature 
gradients; however, the shape and depth of each water body, in addition 
to the presence or absence of tidal influence and meromictic 
properties, provide some distinction for these two bodies of water.
    (32) Comment: One peer reviewer commented that the reproductive 
mode of Vetericaris chaceorum would play an important role in 
determining if populations could recolonize neighboring habitats after 
a local extirpation. Maciolek postulates that these habitats are 
colonized from long-existing subterranean populations, and Kensley and 
Williams (1986) state: ``Given the relative youth of the Lua o Palahemo 
lava tube, the above-mentioned and unexplained absences and 
occurrences, and the presence of some of these shrimps in modern wells 
and quarries, Maciolek's postulate (1983: 615) that these habitats are 
colonized from long-existing subterranean populations, must be 
strengthened.'' If this is true, the main habitat of V. chaceorum may 
be completely different from what we know about Lua o Palahemo.
    Our Response: We agree it would be beneficial to know the 
reproductive mode for Vetericaris chaceorum; however, the complete life 
history for this species is not known at this time. Hypogeal shrimp by 
definition occupy subterranean habitat. The fact that V. chaceorum is 
described as a primitive species, combined with the depth within Lua o 
Palahemo in which V. chaceorum was observed and the recent discovery of 
V. chaceorum in very different habitat at Manuka, together appear to 
support Maciolek's hypothesis that hypogeal shrimp colonized anchialine 
pool habitats from long-existing subterranean populations, but this is 
only conjecture at this time. The newly discovered population at Manuka 
supports the thought that the main habitat of V. chaceorum at Lua o 
Palahemo is likely different from what we previously thought.
Comments From the State of Hawaii
    (33) Comment: The Hawaii Department of Business, Economic 
Development, and Tourism's Hawaii Housing Finance and Development 
Corporation challenged our proposal to list Bidens micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla as an endangered species, stating that the lowland dry 
ecosystem covers a very large area on Hawaii Island and that the 
Service did not have enough studies regarding the absence or abundance 
of this species within this ecosystem. According to this agency, 
without knowing the absence or prevalence of this species, it cannot be 
determined whether or not this species should be designated as 
endangered, and the Service's findings are premature with no 
foundation.
    Our Response: We disagree that there is a lack of information 
regarding the presence or abundance of Bidens micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla in the lowland dry ecosystem on the island of Hawaii and 
that our determination to list this species as an endangered species is 
premature and without foundation. Lowland dry ecosystems in the 
Hawaiian Islands have undergone sweeping changes over the last 100 
years due to development, agriculture, and nonnative plants and animals 
that have resulted in the loss of over 90 percent of Hawaii's dry 
forests (Bruegmann 1996, pp. 26-27; Cabin et al. 2000, pp. 439-453; 
Sakai et al. 2002, pp. 276-302; Cordell et al. 2008, pp. 279-284); 
however, the actual extent of native dry forest cover may be as low as 
1 percent (Pau 2011, in litt.). Forty-five percent of Hawaii's dry 
forest plant species are at risk of endangerment (Pau et al. 2009, p. 
3,167). Twenty-five percent of the endangered plant species in the 
Hawaiian Islands are dry forest species, and approximately 20 percent 
of Hawaii's dry land plant species are believed to be extinct (Cabin et 
al. 2000, pp. 439-453; Sakai et al. 2002, pp. 276-302). One of the last 
remaining areas of lowland dry forest in the Hawaiian Islands is in the 
north Kona region of Hawaii Island, where only patches or scattered 
individuals of native plants remain amidst a sea of the highly 
flammable, nonnative fountain grass (Pennisetum setaceum), where over 
200,000 ac (80,939 ha) of land are covered with fountain grass (HISC 
2013, in litt.). North Kona is also a rapidly growing, urban area with 
a steady flow of new housing, roads, commercial, and industrial 
developments. Surveys and observations conducted over the last 90 years 
have detected Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla from only six 
locations, totaling fewer than 1,000 individuals in north Kona (see 
Description of the 15 Species, above) (Sherff 1920, p. 97; Degener and 
Wiebke 1926, in litt.; Scottsberg 1926, in litt.; Borges and Degener 
1929, in litt.; Degener and Iwasaki 1930, in litt.; Nishina 1931, in 
litt.; Krajina 1961, in litt.; Gillett 1965,

[[Page 64653]]

in litt.; Nagata and Ganders 1983, pp. 1-16; Pratt and Abbott 1996, p. 
26; Ganders and Nagata 1999, pp. 271, 273; TNC 2007-Ecosystem Database 
of ArcMap Shapefiles, unpublished; Whistler 2007, pp. 1-18; Bio 2008, 
in litt.; Whistler 2008, pp. 1-11; Hawaii Forest Institute 2009, in 
litt.; Beavers 2010, in litt.; Faucette 2010, pp. 1-27; HBMP 2010b; 
Giffin 2011, pers. comm.; Pau 2011, in litt.; Wagner 2011, in litt.; 
Zimpfer 2011, in litt.; Kaahahui O Ka Nahelehele 2013, in litt.).
    Under the Act, we determine whether a species is an endangered 
species or a threatened species because of any of five factors (see 
Summary of Factors Affecting the 15 Species, below), and we are 
required to make listing determinations solely on the basis of the best 
available scientific and commercial data available [emphasis ours] 
(sections 4(a)(1) and 4(b)(1)(A)). The threats to B. micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla, as well as those that impact lowland dry ecosystems in the 
Hawaiian Islands, are well documented. This plant species faces threats 
from habitat degradation from development and nonnative ungulates 
(feral pigs and goats), predation by nonnative ungulates (feral pigs 
and goats) and rats, competition with nonnative plants, fire, drought, 
hurricanes, and hybridization; it also faces threats from the 
synergistic effects that may arise from any combination of these 
threats (see Summary of Factors Affecting the 15 Species, below). 
Therefore, in this final rule, we have made our determination to list 
Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla as an endangered species based on the 
best scientific and commercial data available.
Comments From Federal Agencies
    All of the comments we received from Federal agencies have been 
incorporated, as appropriate, in the Description of the 15 Species, 
above, and Summary of Changes from Proposed Rule, below.
Public Comments on the Proposed Listing of 15 Species
    (34) Comment: One commenter, representing Laiopua 2020, stated that 
none of the 15 species proposed for listing occurs on parcels proposed 
for development of the Laiopua Community Center (Tax Map Key parcels 3-
7-4-021:002, 003, and 023). The commenter provided a 2008 botanical 
survey report (Gerrish and Leonard Bisel Associates, LLC, 2008, entire) 
to confirm the absence of the 15 species on the three parcels.
    Our Response: We appreciate the information provided by the 
commenter and have taken it into consideration in this final listing 
determination. The botanical survey published by Gerrish and Leonard 
Bisel Associates, LLC, in 2008 was one of multiple surveys and 
botanical expert reports used by the Service to determine the range of 
Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla in North Kona. Since Bidens micrantha 
ssp. ctenophylla is known to occur in the area of Laiopua, the Service 
considered this area as habitat for this species. In addition, there is 
likely a seed bank in the soil of the surrounding area that, if given 
the opportunity, can contribute toward the recovery of this species.

Summary of Changes From Proposed Rule

    In preparing this final rule, we reviewed and fully considered 
comments from the peer reviewers and public on the proposed listing for 
15 species. This final rule incorporates the following substantive 
changes to our proposed listing, based on the comments we received:
    (1) We added inundation by high surf as a threat to the newly 
listed plant Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana in the following 
locations in this final rule: Table 3 (below) and ``Habitat Destruction 
and Modification Due to Rockfalls, Treefalls, Landslides, Heavy Rain, 
Inundation by High Surf, Erosion, and Drought'' under Factor A. The 
Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of 
Habitat or Range (below), based on a peer review comment.
    (2) We added the nonnative understory plant species Sphagneticola 
trilobata [Wedelia trilobata] (wedelia) as a threat to the plant Bidens 
hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana in the coastal and dry cliff 
ecosystem, and to ``Specific Nonnative Plant Species Impacts'' (below), 
based on a peer review comment.
    (3) We added the nonnative vine Paederia foetida (skunk weed) as a 
threat to the newly listed plant Cyrtandra nanawaleensis in the lowland 
wet ecosystem and to ``Specific Nonnative Plant Species Impacts'' 
(below), based on a peer review comment.
    (4) We added the nonnative canopy plant species Psidium cattleianum 
(strawberry guava) as a threat to Cyanea tritomantha in the wet cliff 
ecosystem, based on a peer review comment that we include this 
nonnative plant species as a threat to this species in its known 
locations, in this final rule.
    (5) We added Pisonia spp. as a host plant for the picture-wing fly 
Drosophila digressa, in the following locations in this final rule: 
Description of the 15 Species (above); ``Habitat Destruction and 
Modification by Introduced Ungulates'' and ``Habitat Destruction and 
Modification Due to Rockfalls, Treefalls, Landslides, Heavy Rain, 
Inundation by High Surf, Erosion, and Drought'' under Factor A. The 
Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of 
Habitat or Range (below); ``Predation and Herbivory'' under Factor C. 
Disease or Predation (below); and ``Loss of Host Plants'' under Factor 
E. Other Natural or Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued Existence 
(below), based on a peer review comment.
    (6) Hawaii State biologists discovered a population of Vetericaris 
chaceorum at Manuka NAR between 2009 and 2010. We solicited public 
comments on the new location in the Federal Register in our April 30, 
2013, document announcing the availability of the draft economic 
analysis and reopening the comment period on the proposed rule (78 FR 
25243). The new location information has been incorporated in the 
following sections in this final rule: Description of the 15 Species 
(above), ``Habitat Destruction and Modification by Sedimentation'' 
under Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of Habitat or Range (below), and ``Dumping of Trash and 
Introduction of Nonnative Fish'' (below) under Factor E. Other Natural 
or Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued Existence, and we 
reassessed whether listing was warranted for V. chaceorum based on this 
additional information.
    (7) We revised the statement that incorrectly indicated that the 
outplanted individuals of Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla within 
KHNHP are fenced in Description of the 15 Species, above, based on a 
comment we received.

Summary of Factors Affecting the 15 Species

    Section 4 of the Act (16 U.S.C. 1533) and its implementing 
regulations (50 CFR part 424) set forth the procedures for adding 
species to the Federal Lists of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and 
Plants. A species may be determined to be an endangered or threatened 
species due to one or more of the five factors described in section 
4(a)(1) of the Act: (A) The present or threatened destruction, 
modification, or curtailment of its habitat or range; (B) 
overutilization for commercial, recreational, scientific, or 
educational purposes; (C) disease or predation; (D) the inadequacy of 
existing regulatory mechanisms; and (E) other natural or manmade 
factors affecting its continued

[[Page 64654]]

existence. Listing actions may be warranted based on any of the above 
threat factors, singly or in combination.
    If we determine that the level of threat posed to a species by one 
or more of the five listing factors is such that the species meets the 
definition of either endangered or threatened under section 3 of the 
Act, that species may then be listed as endangered or threatened. The 
Act defines an endangered species as ``in danger of extinction 
throughout all or a significant portion of its range,'' and a 
threatened species as ``likely to become an endangered species within 
the foreseeable future throughout all or a significant portion of its 
range.'' The threats to each of the individual 15 species are 
summarized in Table 3, and discussed in detail below.

[[Page 64655]]



                                                                         Table 3-Summary of Primary Threats Identified for Each of the 15 Hawaii Island Species
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                      Factor A                                      Factor B                             Factor C                             Factor D       Factor E
                                                  --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                                                                             Predation/                      Inadequate
            Species                 Ecosystem       Agriculture                       Non                Stochastic      Climate     Over-                   Predation/     herbivory by     Predation/       existing    Other  species-
                                                     and urban       Ungulates       native    Fire        events        change   utilization   Disease     herbivory by       other NN   herbivory  by NN   regulatory       specific
                                                    development                      plants                                                                   ungulates      vertebrates    invertebrates    mechanisms       threats
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Plants:
    Bidens hillebrandiana ssp.  CO, DC...........  ............  P, G.............       X   .......  H, RF, L, HS, E.       Pt   ...........  .........  P, G............            R   ................            X   LN
     hillebrandiana.
    Bidens micrantha ssp.       LD...............            X   P, G.............       X        X   H, DR...........       Pt   ...........  .........  P, G............            R   ................            X   HY
     ctenophylla.
    Cyanea marksii............  LW, MW...........  ............  P, C, M..........       X   .......  H, RF, L........       Pt   ...........  .........  P, C, M.........            R   S...............            X   LN
    Cyanea tritomantha........  LW, MW, WC.......  ............  P, C.............       X   .......  H, TF...........       Pt   ...........  .........  P, C............            R   S...............            X   NR
    Cyrtandra nanawaleensis...  LW...............  ............  P................       X   .......  H...............       Pt   ...........  .........  P...............            R   S...............            X   HY
    Cyrtandra wagneri.........  LW...............  ............  P................       X   .......  H, HR, E........       Pt   ...........  .........  P...............            R   S...............            X   LN, HY
    Phyllostegia floribunda...  LW, MM, MW.......  ............  P................       X        X   H...............       Pt   ...........  .........  P...............  ............  ................            X   ..............
    Pittosporum hawaiiense....  LM, MM, MW.......  ............  P, C, M..........       X   .......  H...............       Pt   ...........  .........  P, C, M.........            R   ................            X   NR
    Platydesma remyi..........  LW, MW...........  ............  P................       X   .......  H...............       Pt   ...........  .........  P...............  ............  ................            X   LN, NR
    Pritchardia lanigera......  LM, LW, MW, WC...  ............  P, G, M, C.......       X   .......  H...............       Pt            X   .........  P, G, M.........            R   LH, B...........            X   NR
    Schiedea diffusa ssp.       MW...............  ............  P, C.............       X   .......  H...............       Pt   ...........  .........  P, C............            R   ................            X   LN
     macraei.
    Schiedea hawaiiensis......  MD...............  ............  P, G, SH, M......       X        X   H, DR...........       Pt   ...........  .........  P, G, SH, M.....            R   ................            X   LN
    Stenogyne cranwelliae.....  MW, WC...........  ............  P................       X   .......  H...............       Pt   ...........  .........  P...............            R   S...............            X   ..............
Animals
    Drosophila digressa         LM, MM, MW.......  ............  P, G, C, M.......       X        X   H, DR...........       Pt   ...........  .........  ................  ............  W, A............            X   LN, LOH, F
     (Picture-wing fly).
    Vetericaris chaceorum       AP...............  ............  G, C.............  .......  .......  ................       Pt   ...........  .........  ................  ............  ................            X   REC, SD, D
     (Anchialine pool shrimp).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


 
 
 
Factor A = Habitat Modification                               LW = Lowland Wet              SH = Sheep                      DR = Drought                                                            HY = Hybridization
Factor B = Overutilization                                    MD = Montane Dry              M = Mouflon                     RF = Rockfalls                                                          NR = No Regeneration
Factor C = Disease or Predation                               MM = Montane Mesic            R = Rats                        L = Landslides                                                          F = Flies
Factor D = Inadequacy of Regulatory Mechanisms                MW = Montane Wet              S = Slugs                       HR = Heavy Rain                                                         LOH = Loss of Host
Factor E = Other Species-Specific Threats                     DC = Dry Cliff                W = Wasps                       HS = High Surf                                                          REC = Recreational vehicles
AP = Anchialine Pools                                         WC = Wet Cliff                A = Ants                        E = Erosion                                                             SD = Sedimentation
CO = Coastal                                                  P = Pigs                      LH = Leafhopper                 TF = Tree Fall                                                          Pt = Potential
LD = Lowland Dry                                              G = Goats                     B = Beetles                     D = Dumping (i.e., Human dumping of nonnative fish and trash)           X = Threat
LM = Lowland Mesic                                            C = Cattle                    H = Hurricane                   LN = Limited Numbers                                                    Blank = Not a Threat


[[Page 64656]]

    The following constitutes a list of ecosystem-scale threats that 
affect the species in this final rule in one or more of the 10 
described ecosystems on Hawaii Island:
    (1) Foraging and trampling of native plants by feral pigs (Sus 
scrofa), goats (Capra hircus), cattle (Bos taurus), sheep (Ovis aries), 
or mouflon sheep (Ovis gmelini musimon), which results in severe 
erosion of watersheds because these mammals inhabit terrain that is 
often steep and remote (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 63). Foraging and 
trampling events destabilize soils that support native plant 
communities, bury or damage native plants, and have adverse water 
quality effects due to runoff over exposed soils.
    (2) Ungulate destruction of seeds and seedlings of native plant 
species via foraging and trampling (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, pp. 63, 65) 
facilitates the conversion of disturbed areas from native to nonnative 
vegetative communities.
    (3) Disturbance of soils by feral pigs from rooting can create 
fertile seedbeds for alien plants (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 65), some 
of them spread by ingestion and excretion by pigs.
    (4) Increased nutrient availability as a result of pigs rooting in 
nitrogen-poor soils, which facilitates establishment of alien weeds. 
Introduced vertebrates are known to enhance the germination of alien 
plants through seed scarification in digestive tracts or through 
rooting and fertilization with feces of potential seedbeds (Stone 1985, 
p, 253). In addition, alien weeds are more adapted to nutrient-rich 
soils than native plants (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 65), and rooting 
activity creates open areas in forests allowing alien species to 
completely replace native stands.
    (5) Rodent damage to plant propagules, seedlings, or native trees, 
which changes forest composition and structure (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, 
p. 67).
    (6) Feeding or defoliation of native plants from alien insects, 
which reduces geographic ranges of some species because of damage 
(Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 71).
    (7) Alien insect predation on native insects, which affects 
pollination of native plant species (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 71).
    (8) Significant changes in nutrient cycling processes because of 
large numbers of alien invertebrates, such as earthworms, ants, slugs, 
isopods, millipedes, and snails, resulting in changes to the 
composition and structure of plant communities (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, 
p. 73).
    Each of the above threats is discussed in more detail below, and 
summarized in Table 3.

Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of Habitat or Range

    The Hawaiian Islands are located over 2,000 mi (3,200 km) from the 
nearest continent. This isolation has allowed the few plants and 
animals that arrived in the Hawaiian Islands to evolve into many highly 
varied and endemic species (species that occur nowhere else in the 
world). The only native terrestrial mammals in the Hawaiian Islands are 
two bat taxa, the extant Hawaiian hoary bat (Lasiurus cinereus semotus) 
and an extinct, unnamed, insectivorous bat (Ziegler 2002, p. 245). The 
native plants of the Hawaiian Islands, therefore, evolved in the 
absence of mammalian predators, browsers, or grazers. As a result, many 
of the native species have lost unneeded defenses against threats such 
as mammalian predation and competition with aggressive, weedy plant 
species that are typical of continental environments (Loope 1992, p. 
11; Gagne and Cuddihy 1999, p. 45; Wagner et al. 1999d, pp. 3-6). For 
example, Carlquist (in Carlquist and Cole 1974, p. 29) notes that 
``Hawaiian plants are notably free from many characteristics thought to 
be deterrents to herbivores (toxins, oils, resins, stinging hairs, 
coarse texture).''
    Native Hawaiian plants are therefore highly vulnerable to the 
impacts of introduced mammals and alien plants. In addition, species 
restricted and adapted to highly specialized locations (e.g., Bidens 
hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana) are particularly vulnerable to 
changes (e.g., nonnative species, hurricanes, fire, and climate change) 
in their habitat (Carlquist and Cole 1974, pp. 28-29; Loope 1992, pp. 
3-6; Stone 1992, pp. 88-102).
Habitat Destruction and Modification by Agriculture and Urban 
Development
    The consequences of past land use practices, such as agricultural 
or urban development, have resulted in little or no native vegetation 
below 2,000 ft (600 m) throughout the Hawaiian Islands (TNC 2007-
Ecosystem Database of ArcMap Shapefiles, unpublished), largely 
impacting the coastal, lowland dry, lowland mesic, and lowland wet 
ecosystems. Although agriculture has been declining in importance, 
large tracts of former agricultural lands are being converted into 
residential areas or left fallow (TNC 2007-Ecosystem Database of ArcMap 
Shapefiles, unpublished). In addition, Hawaii's population has 
increased almost 7 percent in the past 10 years, further increasing 
demands on limited land and water resources in the islands (Hawaii 
Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism (HDBEDT) 
2010).
    Development and urbanization of the lowland dry ecosystem on Hawaii 
Island is a threat to one species in this rule, Bidens micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla. Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla is currently found in an 
area less than 10 sq mi (26 sq km) on the leeward slopes of Hualalai 
volcano in the lowland dry ecosystem. This area encompasses the 
increasingly urbanized region of north Kona, where there is very little 
undisturbed habitat (Pratt and Abbott 1997, p. 25). Approximately 25 
percent (119 individuals of 475) of the largest of the 6 occurrences of 
this species is in the right-of-way of the Ane Keohokalole Highway 
Project (USFWS 2010, in litt.) and Kaloko Makai Development, although 
154 ac (62 ha) will be set aside as a lowland dry forest preserve 
(Kaloko Makai Dryland Forest Preserve) to compensate for the loss of 
these individuals as a result of highway construction and prior to the 
Kaloko Makai Development. Individuals of Bidens micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla also occur in areas where the development of the Villages 
of Laiopua at Kealakehe and of the Keahuolu affordable housing project 
(Whistler 2007, pp. 1-18; DHHL 2009, p. 15) is a threat to the species.
Habitat Destruction and Modification by Introduced Ungulates
    Introduced mammals have greatly impacted the native vegetation, as 
well as the native fauna, of the Hawaiian Islands. The presence of 
introduced alien mammals is considered one of the primary factors 
underlying the alteration and degradation of native plant communities 
and habitats on the island of Hawaii. The destruction or degradation of 
habitat due to nonnative ungulates (hoofed mammals), including pigs, 
goats, cattle, sheep, and mouflon, is currently a threat to the 10 
ecosystems (lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, 
montane mesic, montane wet, coastal, anchialine pool, dry cliff, and 
wet cliff) on Hawaii Island and their associated species. Habitat 
degradation or destruction by ungulates is also a threat to all 13 
plant species and the picture-wing fly in this final rule (Table 3). 
Habitat degradation or destruction by ungulates is a threat to the 
anchialine pool shrimp at Lua o Palahemo, but is not reported to pose a 
threat to the four pools that support this species at Manuka.

[[Page 64657]]

    The destruction or degradation of habitat due to pigs is currently 
a threat to nine of the Hawaii Island ecosystems (coastal, lowland dry, 
lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, montane mesic, montane wet, 
dry cliff, and wet cliff) and their associated species. In Hawaii, pigs 
have been described as the most pervasive and disruptive nonnative 
influence on the unique native forests of the Hawaiian Islands, and are 
widely recognized as one of the greatest current threats to forest 
ecosystems (Aplet et al. 1991, p. 56; Anderson and Stone 1993, p. 195).
    These feral animals are extremely destructive and have both direct 
and indirect impacts on native plant communities. While rooting in the 
earth in search of invertebrates and plant material, pigs directly 
impact native plants by disturbing and destroying vegetative cover, and 
by trampling plants and seedlings. It has been estimated that at a 
conservative rooting rate of 2 sq yards (yd) (1.7 sq m) per minute, 
with only 4 hours of foraging a day, a single pig could disturb over 
1,600 sq yd (1,340 sq m) (or approximately 0.3 ac, or 0.12 ha) of 
groundcover per week (Anderson et al. 2007, p. 2).
    Pigs reduce or eliminate plant regeneration by damaging or eating 
seeds and seedlings (further discussion of predation by nonnative 
ungulates is provided under Factor C. Disease or Predation, below). 
Pigs are a major vector for the establishment and spread of competing 
invasive, nonnative plant species by dispersing plant seeds on their 
hooves and fur, and in their feces (Diong 1982, pp. 169-170), which 
also serves to fertilize disturbed soil (Matson 1990, p. 245; Siemann 
et al. 2009, p. 547). Pigs feed on the fruits of many nonnative plants, 
such as Passiflora tarminiana (banana poke) and Psidium cattleianum 
(strawberry guava), spreading the seeds of these invasive species 
through their feces as they travel in search of food. Pigs also feed on 
native plants, such as Hawaiian tree ferns that they root up to eat the 
core of the trunk (Baker 1975, p. 79). In addition, rooting pigs 
contribute to erosion by clearing vegetation and creating large areas 
of disturbed soil, especially on slopes (Smith 1985, pp. 190, 192, 196, 
200, 204, 230-231; Stone 1985, pp. 254-255, 262-264; Medeiros et al. 
1986, pp. 27-28; Scott et al. 1986, pp. 360-361; Tomich 1986, pp. 120-
126; Cuddihy and Stone 1990, pp. 64-65; Aplet et al. 1991, p. 56; Loope 
et al. 1991, pp. 1-21; Gagne and Cuddihy 1999, p. 52; Nogueira-Filho et 
al. 2009, pp. 3,677-3,682; Dunkell et al. 2011, pp. 175-177). Erosion 
impacts native plant communities by watershed degradation and 
alteration of plant nutrient status due to associated outcomes such as 
sediment build up in waterways and top soil run off, respectively, as 
well as damage to individual plants from landslides (Vitousek et al. 
2009, pp. 3074-3086; Chan-Halbrendt et al. 2010, p. 252).
    Pigs have been cited as one of the greatest threats to the public 
and private lands within the Olaa Kilauea Partnership (an area of land 
that includes approximately 32,000 ac (12,950 ha) in the upper sections 
of the Olaa and Waiakea forests above Volcano village) that comprise 
the lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane mesic, and montane wet 
ecosystems that support individuals of three of the plant species in 
this final rule (Cyanea tritomantha, Phyllostegia floribunda, and 
Pittosporum hawaiiense) (Olaa Kilauea Partnership Area Feral Animal 
Monitoring Report 2005, pp. 1-4; Perlman 2007, in litt.; Pratt 2007a, 
in litt.; Pratt 2007b, in litt.; Benitez et al. 2008, p. 58; HBMP 
2010f; HBMP 2010h; PEPP 2010, p. 60, TNC 2012, in litt.). Impacts from 
feral pigs are also a threat to the coastal, lowland mesic, lowland 
wet, montane wet, dry cliff, and wet cliff ecosystems in the northern 
Kohala Mountains and adjacent coastline. These ecosystems support 
occurrences of seven of the plant species in this final rule (Bidens 
hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, Cyanea tritomantha, Cyrtandra 
wagneri, Platydesma remyi, Pritchardia lanigera, Schiedea diffusa ssp. 
macraei, and Stenogyne cranwelliae) (Wood 1995, in litt.; Wood 1998, in 
litt.; Perlman et al. 2001, in litt.; Wagner et al. 2005d, pp. 31-33; 
Kohala Mountain Watershed Partnership (KMWP) 2007, pp. 54-56; Lorence 
and Perlman 2007, pp. 357-361; HBMP 2010a; HBMP 2010c; HBMP 2010f; HBMP 
2010i; HBMP 2010j; HBMP 2010k; PEPP 2010, pp. 63, 101, 106; Bio 2011, 
pers. comm.). In addition, feral pigs are a threat to the lowland wet 
and montane wet ecosystems in south Kona, Kau, and Puna districts that 
support the plants Cyanea marksii, Cyrtandra nanawaleensis, and 
Pritchardia lanigera (Bio 2011, pers. comm.; Magnacca 2011b, pers. 
comm.; Maui Forest Bird Recovery Project 2011, in litt.; Crysdale 2013, 
pers. comm.). Feral pigs have also been reported in the lowland dry 
ecosystem that supports the plant Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla 
(Bio 2011, pers. comm.) and the montane dry ecosystem that supports 
habitat for the only known occurrence of the plant Schiedea hawaiiensis 
(Mitchell et al. 2005c; U.S. Army Garrison 2006, pp. 27, 34, 95-97, 
100-107, 112). Although we do not have direct evidence of feral pigs 
threatening the particular species on Hawaii Island that are in this 
final rule, those threats have been documented on other islands where 
pigs have been introduced (Mitchell et al. 2005c; U.S. Army Garrison 
2006, pp. 27, 34, 95-97, 100-107, 112). We find it is reasonable to 
infer that feral pig threats to these species that have been observed 
on other Hawaiian islands would act in a similar manner on Hawaii 
Island, where those species interact.
    Many of the most important host plants of Hawaiian picture-wing 
flies (Charpentiera, Pisonia, Pleomele, Reynoldsia, Tetraplasandra, 
Urera, and the lobelioids (e.g., Cyanea spp.)) are also among the most 
susceptible to damage from feral ungulates, such as pigs (Foote and 
Carson 1995, p. 370; Kaneshiro and Kaneshiro 1995, pp. 8, 39; Magnacca 
et al. 2008, p. 32; Magnacca 2013, in litt.). Feral pig browsing alters 
the essential microclimate in picture-wing fly (Drosophila digressa) 
habitat by opening up the canopy, leading to increased desiccation of 
soil and host plants (Charpentiera spp. and Pisonia ssp.), which 
disrupts the host plants' life cycle and decay processes, resulting in 
disruption of the picture-wing fly's life cycle, particularly 
oviposition and larvae substrate (Magnacca et al. 2008, pp. 1, 32). 
Foote and Carson (1995, p. 369) have experimentally demonstrated the 
above detrimental effects of feral pigs on Drosophila spp. in wet 
forest habitat on the island of Hawaii. In addition, Montgomery (2005, 
in litt.; 2007, in litt.) and Foote (2005, pers. comm.) have observed 
feral pig damage to host plants (e.g., Charpentiera sp., Cheirodendron 
sp., Pleomele sp., Tetraplasandra sp., Urera kaalae) of Hawaiian 
picture-wing flies on the island of Hawaii (Foote 2005, pers. comm.) 
and throughout the main Hawaiian Islands (Montgomery 2005, in litt.; 
2007, in litt.). Magnacca (2012, pers. comm.) has observed the lack of 
regeneration of picture-wing fly host plants due to destruction of 
seedlings caused by pig rooting and herbivory.
    The destruction or degradation of habitat due to goats is currently 
a threat to all 10 of the described ecosystems on Hawaii Island 
(anchialine pool, coastal, lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland wet, 
montane dry, montane mesic, montane wet, dry cliff, and wet cliff) and 
their associated species. Goats occupy a wide variety of habitats on 
Hawaii Island, where they consume native vegetation, trample roots and 
seedlings, accelerate erosion, and promote the invasion of alien plants

[[Page 64658]]

(van Riper and van Riper 1982, pp. 34-35; Stone 1985, p. 261; Kessler 
2011, pers. comm.). Goats are able to access, and forage in, extremely 
rugged terrain, and they have a high reproductive capacity (Clarke and 
Cuddihy 1980, pp. C-19, C-20; Culliney 1988, p. 336; Cuddihy and Stone 
1990, p. 64). Because of these factors, goats have completely 
eliminated some plant species from islands (Atkinson and Atkinson 2000, 
p. 21).
    Goats are be highly destructive to native vegetation, and 
contribute to erosion by eating young trees and young shoots of plants 
before they can become established, creating trails that damage native 
vegetative cover, promoting erosion by destabilizing substrate and 
creating gullies that convey water, and dislodging stones from ledges 
that can cause rockfalls and landslides and damage vegetation below 
(Cuddihy and Stone 1990, pp. 63-64). A recent study by Chynoweth et al. 
(2011, in litt.), which deployed GPS (global positioning system) 
satellite collars on 12 feral goats to track movement patterns every 2 
hours for 1 year in Pohakuloa Training Area, found that goats prefer 
native-dominated shrublands in the montane dry ecosystem during the day 
and barren lava at night. Pohakuloa Training Area supports one of the 
few montane dry forest ecosystems on Hawaii Island that supports native 
plants in the montane dry ecosystem, including the only occurrence of 
the plant Schiedea hawaiiensis (U.S. Army Garrison 2006, pp. 27, 34; 
Evans 2011, in litt.). In addition, one of the two occurrences of the 
plant Pritchardia lanigera is known from an unfenced area of the Kohala 
Mountains, where herds of wild goats and other ungulates occur (Maly 
and Maly 2004 in KMWP 2007, p. 55; KMWP 2007, pp. 54-55; Warshauer et 
al. 2009, pp. 10, 24; Laws et al. 2010, in litt.; Ikagawa 2011, in 
litt.). Maly and Maly (2004 in KMWP 2007, p. 55) report that ``herds of 
wild goats roam throughout this region, trampling, grubbing, and 
rending, grinding the bark of old trees and eat the young ones . . . 
which will destroy the beauty and alter the climate of the mountainous 
region of Hawaii.'' There are direct observations that goats are also 
altering the coastal ecosystem along the Kohala Mountains, the location 
of the only known wild individuals of the plant Bidens hillebrandiana 
ssp. hillebrandiana (Warshauer et al. 2009, p. 24; Bio 2011, pers. 
comm.). Goats are also found in North Kona and have been observed 
browsing in the lowland dry ecosystem that supports the plant B. 
micrantha ssp. ctenophylla (Bio 2011, pers. comm.; Knoche 2011, in 
litt.). Fresh seedlings from native plants attract goats to the dry and 
rough lava (Bio 2011, pers. comm.). Further, the host plants 
(Charpentiera spp. and Pisonia spp.) of the picture-wing fly in this 
final rule appear to be decreasing throughout their ranges due to 
impacts from browsing goats (Foote and Carson 1995, p. 369; Science 
Panel 2005, pp. 1-23; Magnacca et al. 2008, p. 32; Magnacca 2013, in 
litt.). Feral goat browsing alters the picture-wing fly's (Drosophila 
digressa) essential microclimate by opening up the canopy, leading to 
increased desiccation of soil and host plants, which disrupts the host 
plants' life cycle and decay processes, resulting in the disruption of 
the picture-wing fly's life cycle, particularly oviposition and larvae 
substrate (Magnacca et al. 2008, pp. 1, 32). Based on observations of 
goats and their scat (Magnacca 2012, pers. comm.) within the Ka Lae 
region where the Lua o Palahemo anchialine pool is located, the Service 
concludes that goats contribute to the degradation of the anchialine 
pool habitat and, thus, are a threat to the anchialine pool shrimp 
Vetericaris chaceorum. Feral goats trample and forage on both native 
and nonnative plants around and near the pool opening at Lua o 
Palahemo, and increase erosion around the pool and sediment entering 
the pool.
    The destruction or degradation of habitat due to cattle is 
currently a threat to five of the described ecosystems (anchialine 
pool, lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane mesic, and montane wet) on 
Hawaii Island and their associated species. Feral cattle eat native 
vegetation, trample roots and seedlings, cause erosion, create 
disturbed areas into which alien plants invade, and spread seeds of 
alien plants in their feces and on their bodies. The forest in areas 
grazed by cattle degrades to grassland pasture, and plant cover is 
reduced for many years following removal of cattle from an area. In 
addition, several alien grasses and legumes purposely introduced for 
cattle forage have become noxious weeds (Tomich 1986, pp. 140-150; 
Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 29).
    The wet forests of Kohala Mountain are reported to have a feral 
cattle population of at least 100 individuals that are causing forest 
degradation by trampling and browsing, which leads to subsequent 
increased nitrogen availability through deposition of feces (Stone 
1985, p. 253), all of which contribute to the influx of nonnative plant 
and animal species (KMWP 2007, pp. 54-55; Laws 2010, in litt.). Feral 
cattle are reported from remote regions on Hawaii Island, including the 
back of both Pololu and Waipio Valleys (KMWP 2007, p. 55). Feral cattle 
are a threat to the lowland wet and montane wet ecosystems on Kohala 
Mountain where individuals of Cyanea tritomantha, Pittosporum 
hawaiiense, and Pritchardia lanigera, and the last wild individual of 
Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei, are reported (PEPP 2010, pp. 59-60; Bio 
2011, pers. comm.). According to a 2010 Service report (USFWS 2010, pp. 
3-15, 4-86), a herd of 200 to 300 feral cattle roams the Kona unit of 
the Hakalau Forest NWR, where individuals of Cyanea marksii are 
reported (USFWS 2010, pp. 3-15, 4-86). Field biologists have observed 
cattle-induced habitat degradation at all elevations in this refuge 
unit, including within the montane wet ecosystem that supports 
individuals of Cyanea marksii (PEPP 2007, p. 61; USFWS 2010, pp. 1-15, 
2-13, 4-10, 4-58-4-59, 4-82, 4-86; Bio 2011, pers. comm.; Krauss 2012, 
pers. comm.). In addition, the host plants (Charpentiera spp. and 
Pisonia spp.) of the picture-wing fly Drosophila digressa have 
decreased throughout their ranges due to impacts from cattle browsing 
in the lowland mesic and montane mesic ecosystems (Science Panel 2005, 
pp. 1-23; Magnacca 2011b, in litt.; Magnacca 2013, in litt.). Feral 
cattle browsing alters the picture-wing fly's essential microclimate by 
opening up the canopy, leading to increased desiccation of soil and 
host plants, which disrupts the host plants' life cycle and decay 
processes, resulting in the disruption of the picture-wing fly's life 
cycle, particularly oviposition and larvae substrate (Magnacca et al. 
2008, pp. 1, 32). According to Palikapu Dedman with the Pele Defense 
Fund, observations of feral cattle in the Ka Lae region where the Lua o 
Palahemo anchialine pool is located contribute to the degradation of 
the anchialine pool habitat (Richarson 2012, in litt.). Feral cattle 
trample and forage on both native and nonnative plants around and near 
the pool opening at Lua o Palahemo, and increase erosion around the 
pool and sediment entering the pool. We therefore conclude that feral 
cattle are a threat to the anchialine pool shrimp Vetericaris chaceorum 
(Richardson 2012, in litt., pp. 1-2). Further, cattle carcasses have 
been observed within the pool at Lua o Palahemo (Kinzie 2012, in 
litt.). Due to the steep sides of the pool, animals may fall into the 
water, and if they die there, their decomposing bodies could have a 
negative impact on the ability of the pool habitat to support V. 
chaceorum (Kinzie 2012, in litt.).
    The destruction or degradation of habitat due to feral sheep is 
currently a

[[Page 64659]]

threat to the montane dry ecosystem on Hawaii Island and its associated 
species. Feral sheep browse and trample native vegetation, and have 
decimated large areas of native forest and shrubland on Hawaii Island 
(Tomich 1986, pp. 156-163; Cuddihy and Stone 1990, pp. 65-66). Browsing 
erodes top soil, which alters moisture regimes and micro-environments, 
and results in the loss of native plant and animal taxa (Tomich 1986, 
pp. 156-163; Cuddihy and Stone 1990, pp. 65-66). In addition, nonnative 
opportunistic plant seeds get dispersed to disturbed forest sites by 
adhering to sheep wool coats (Hawaii Division of Forestry and Wildlife 
(HDOFAW) 2002, p. 3).
    In 1962, game hunters intentionally crossbred feral sheep with 
mouflon sheep and released them on Mauna Kea (Tomich 1986, pp. 156-
163). In Palila v. Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources (471 
F. Supp. 985 (Haw. 1979)), the Federal court ordered complete removal 
of feral sheep from Mauna Kea in 1979, because they were harming the 
endangered palila (Loxioides bailleui) by degrading and destroying 
palila habitat in the montane dry ecosystem. Throughout the past 30 
years, attempts to protect the vegetation of Mauna Kea and the saddle 
from sheep have only been sporadically effective (Scowcroft and Conrad 
1992, p. 628). Currently, a large feral population surrounds Mauna Kea 
and extends into the saddle and northern part of Mauna Loa, including 
the State forest reserves, where they trample and browse endangered 
plants (Hess 2008, p. 1). At the U.S. Army's Pohakuloa Training Area, 
located in the saddle area of the island, biologists have reported that 
feral sheep are a threat to the last occurrence of the plant species 
Schiedea hawaiiensis, which occurs in the montane dry ecosystem 
(Mitchell et al. 2005a; U.S. Army Garrison 2006, pp. 27, 34).
    Five of the described ecosystems (lowland mesic, lowland wet, 
montane dry, montane mesic, and montane wet) on Hawaii Island, and 
their associated species are currently threatened by the destruction or 
degradation of habitat due to mouflon sheep. The mouflon sheep 
(mouflon), native to Asia Minor, was introduced to the islands of Lanai 
and Hawaii in the 1950s, as a managed game species, and has become 
widely established on these islands (Tomich 1986, pp. 163-168; Cuddihy 
and Stone 1990, p. 66; Hess 2008, p. 1). In 1968, mouflon were 
introduced to Kahuku Ranch (now a unit of HVNP) on Mauna Loa for trophy 
hunting. By 2008, mouflon ranged over the southern part of Mauna Loa in 
the Kahuku area on adjacent public and private lands (Hess 2008, p. 1). 
According to Ikagawa (2011, in litt.), mouflon are found on the slopes 
of both Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea. Ikagawa (2011, in litt.) also notes 
that mouflon and mouflon-sheep hybrids are found from sea level to over 
3,280 ft (1,000 m) elevation. Mouflon have high reproduction rates; for 
example, the original population of 11 individuals on the island of 
Hawaii has increased to more than 2,500 in 36 years, even though 
mouflon are hunted as a game animal (Hess 2008, p. 3). Mouflon only 
gather in herds when breeding, thus limiting control techniques and 
hunting efficiency (Hess 2008, p. 3; Ikagawa 2011, in litt.). Mouflon 
are both grazers and browsers, and have decimated vast areas of native 
forest and shrubland through browsing and bark stripping (Stone 1985, 
p. 271; Cuddihy and Stone 1990, pp. 63, 66; Hess 2008, p. 3). Mouflon 
also create trails and pathways through thick vegetation, leading to 
increased runoff and erosion through soil compaction. In some areas, 
the interaction of browsing and soil compaction has led to a change 
from native rainforest to grassy scrublands (Hess 2008, p. 3). Field 
biologists have observed habitat degradation in five of the described 
ecosystems (lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, montane mesic, and 
montane wet) that support four plants (Cyanea marksii, Pittosporum 
hawaiiense, Pritchardia lanigera, and Schiedea hawaiiensis) (Bio 2011, 
pers. comm.; Ikagawa 2011, in litt.; Pratt 2011d, in litt.), and the 
picture-wing fly (Drosophila digressa) (Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.), 
in this final rule. Many of the current and proposed fenced exclosures 
on Hawaii Island are only 4 ft (1.3 m) in height, as they are designed 
to exclude feral pigs, goats, and sheep. However, a fence height of at 
least 6 ft (2 m) is required to exclude mouflon sheep, as they can 
easily jump a 4-ft (1.3-m) fence (Ikagawa 2011, in litt.). Both the 
increased range of mouflon, as well as the lack of adequately protected 
habitat, increase the threat of mouflon sheep to additional ecosystems 
on Hawaii Island.
    Between 2010 and 2011, an unauthorized introduction of axis deer 
(Axis axis) occurred on Hawaii, for purposes of big game hunting 
(Kessler 2011, in litt.; Aila 2012a, in litt.). Axis deer are primarily 
grazers, but also browse numerous palatable plant species, including 
those grown as commercial crops (Waring 1996, in litt., p. 3; Simpson 
2001, in litt.). They prefer the lower, more openly vegetated areas for 
browsing and grazing; however, during episodes of drought (e.g., from 
1998-2001 on Maui (Medeiros 2010, pers. comm.)), axis deer move into 
urban and forested areas in search of food (Waring 1996, in litt., p. 
5; Nishibayashi 2001, in litt.). Like goats, axis deer are highly 
destructive to native vegetation and contribute to erosion by eating 
young trees and young shoots of plants before they can become 
established, creating trails that can damage native vegetative cover, 
promoting erosion by destabilizing substrate and creating gullies that 
convey water, and by dislodging stones from ledges that cause rockfalls 
and landslides and damage vegetation below (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, pp. 
63-64). The unauthorized introduction of axis deer on Hawaii Island is 
a concern due to the devastating impacts of habitat destruction by axis 
deer in nine ecosystems (coastal, lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland 
wet, montane dry, montane mesic, montane wet, dry cliff, and wet cliff) 
on the islands of Kahoolawe, Lanai, and Maui (Mehrhoff 1993, p. 11; 
Anderson 2002, poster; Swedberg and Walker 1978, cited in Anderson 
2003, pp. 124-125; Perlman 2009, in litt., pp. 4-5; Hess 2008, p. 3; 
Hess 2010, pers. comm.; Kessler 2010, pers. comm.; Medeiros 2010, pers. 
comm.). As reported on the islands of Kahoolawe, Lanai, and Maui, the 
spread of axis deer into nine of the described ecosystems (coastal, 
lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, montane mesic, 
montane wet, dry cliff, and wet cliff) on Hawaii Island will lead to 
similar habitat degradation and destruction if the deer are not 
controlled. The results from the studies above, in addition to the 
confirmed sightings of axis deer on Hawaii Island, suggest that axis 
deer will significantly alter these ecosystems and directly damage or 
destroy native plants if they become established. Although habitat 
degradation due to axis deer has not yet been observed on Hawaii 
Island, we believe it is reasonable to assume similar habitat effects 
on this island. Based on the prevailing evidence of the documented 
impacts to native ecosystems and individual plants on the other 
islands, we determine that the expanding population of axis deer on the 
Island of Hawaii, while not currently resulting in population-level 
effects to native plants, is expected to do so in the future if the 
deer are not managed or controlled. See Factor D for further 
information regarding State efforts to eradicate this species.
    In summary, the 15 species dependent upon the 10 ecosystems 
identified in this final rule (anchialine pool, coastal, lowland dry, 
lowland mesic, lowland

[[Page 64660]]

wet, montane dry, montane mesic, montane wet, dry cliff, and wet cliff) 
are exposed to the ongoing threat of feral ungulates (pigs, goats, 
cattle, sheep, and mouflon sheep). Additionally, if not adequately 
managed or controlled, impacts from axis deer may also become a threat 
to these ecosystems in the future. These negative impacts result in the 
destruction and degradation of habitat for these 15 native species on 
Hawaii Island. The effects of these nonnative animals include the 
destruction of vegetative cover; trampling of plants and seedlings; 
direct consumption of native vegetation; soil disturbance and 
sedimentation; dispersal of alien plant seeds on hooves and coats, and 
through the spread of seeds in feces; alteration of soil nitrogen 
availability; and creation of open, disturbed areas conducive to 
further invasion by nonnative pest plant species. All of these impacts 
lead to the subsequent conversion of a plant community dominated by 
native species to one dominated by nonnative species (see ``Habitat 
Destruction and Modification by Nonnative Plants,'' below). In 
addition, because these mammals inhabit terrain that is often steep and 
remote (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 59), foraging and trampling 
contributes to severe erosion of watersheds and degradation of streams 
(Dunkell et al. 2011, pp. 175-194). As early as 1900, there was 
increasing concern expressed about the integrity of island watersheds, 
due to effects of ungulates and other factors, leading to the 
establishment of a professional forestry program emphasizing soil and 
water conservation (Nelson 1989, p. 3).
Habitat Destruction and Modification by Nonnative Plants
    Native vegetation on all of the main Hawaiian Islands has undergone 
extreme alteration because of past and present land management 
practices, including ranching, the deliberate introduction of nonnative 
plants and animals, and agricultural development (Cuddihy and Stone 
1990, pp. 27, 58). The original native flora of Hawaii (species that 
were present before humans arrived) consisted of about 1,000 taxa, 89 
percent of which were endemic (species that occur only in the Hawaiian 
Islands). Over 800 plant taxa have been introduced from elsewhere, and 
nearly 100 of these have become pests (e.g., injurious plants) in 
Hawaii (Smith 1985, p. 180; Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 73; Gagne and 
Cuddihy 1999, p. 45). Of these 100 nonnative pest plant species, over 
35 species have altered the habitat of 14 of the 15 species in this 
final rule (only the anchialine pool shrimp is not directly impacted by 
nonnative plants (see Table 3)).
    The most-often cited effects of nonnative plants on native plant 
species are competition and displacement. Competition may be for water, 
light, or nutrients, or it may involve allelopathy (chemical inhibition 
of other plants). Alien plants displace native species of plants by 
preventing their reproduction, usually by shading and taking up 
available sites for seedling establishment. Alien plant invasions alter 
entire ecosystems by forming monotypic stands, changing fire 
characteristics of native communities, altering soil-water regimes, 
changing nutrient cycling, or encouraging other nonnative organisms 
(Smith 1989, pp. 61-69; Vitousek et al. 1987, pp. 224-227).
    Nonnative plants pose serious and ongoing threats to 14 of the 15 
species (not the anchialine pool shrimp) in this final rule throughout 
their ranges by destroying and modifying habitat. They can adversely 
impact microhabitat by modifying the availability of light and nutrient 
cycling processes, and by altering soil-water regimes. They can also 
alter fire regimes affecting native plant habitat, leading to 
incursions of fire-tolerant nonnative plant species into native 
habitat. Alteration of fire regimes clearly represents an ecosystem-
level change caused by the invasion of nonnative grasses (D'Antonio and 
Vitousek 1992, p. 73). The grass lifeform supports standing dead 
material that burns readily, and grass tissues have large surface-to-
volume ratios and can dry out quickly (D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, p. 
73). The flammability of biological materials is determined primarily 
by their surface-to-volume ratio and moisture content, and secondarily 
by mineral content and tissue chemistry (D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, 
p. 73). The finest size classes of material (mainly grasses) ignite and 
spread fires under a broader range of conditions than do woody fuels or 
even surface litter (D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, p. 73). The grass 
life form allows rapid recovery following fire; there is little above-
ground structural tissue, so almost all new tissue fixes carbon and 
contributes to growth (D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, p. 73). Grass 
canopies also support a microclimate in which surface temperatures are 
hotter, vapor pressure deficits are larger, and the drying of tissues 
more rapid than in forests or woodlands (D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, 
p. 73). Thus, conditions that favor fire are much more frequent in 
grasslands (D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, p. 73).
    Nonnative plants outcompete native plants by growing faster, and 
some may release chemicals that inhibit the growth of other plants. 
Nonnative plants may also displace native species by preventing their 
reproduction, usually by shading and taking up available sites for 
seedling establishment (Vitousek et al. 1987, pp. 224-227). These 
competitive advantages allow nonnative plants to convert native-
dominated plant communities to nonnative plant communities (Cuddihy and 
Stone 1990, p. 74; Vitousek 1992, pp. 33-35).
    In summary, nonnative plants adversely impact native habitat in 
Hawaii, including 9 of the described Hawaii Island ecosystems that 
support 14 of the 15 species (not the anchialine pool shrimp), and 
directly adversely impact the 13 plant species, by: (1) Modifying the 
availability of light through alterations of the canopy structure; (2) 
altering soil-water regimes; (3) modifying nutrient cycling; (4) 
altering the fire regime affecting native plant communities (e.g., 
successive fires that burn farther and farther into native habitat, 
destroying native plants and removing habitat for native species by 
altering microclimatic conditions to favor alien species); and (5) 
ultimately converting native-dominated plant communities to nonnative 
plant communities (Smith 1985, pp. 180-181; Cuddihy and Stone, 1990, p. 
74; D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, p. 73; Vitousek et al. 1997, p. 6).
    A summary of the specific impacts of nonnative plant species is 
included below. Please refer to the proposed rule (77 FR 63928; October 
17, 2012) for a list of nonnative plants organized by their ecosystems, 
a detailed discussion of their specific negative effects on the 14 
affected Hawaii Island species, and the literature cited for each 
nonnative plant species. In particular, we note that we provide 
discussions of nonnative plants in coastal, lowland wet, dry cliff, and 
wet cliff ecosystems in this rule (below), but the discussions for 
nonnative plants in the lowland dry, lowland mesic, montane dry, 
montane mesic, and montane wet ecosystems can be found in the October 
17, 2012, proposed rule (77 FR 63928). Based on comments we received on 
the proposed rule, we have also added information below regarding the 
nonnative plants wedelia, strawberry guava, and skunk weed that pose 
threats to three plants, Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana 
(threats from wedelia), Cyanea tritomantha (threats from strawberry 
guava), and Cyrtandra nanawaleensis (threats from skunk weed), in this 
final rule.

[[Page 64661]]

     Andropogon virginicus may release allelopathic substances 
that dramatically decrease native plant reestablishment, and has become 
dominant in areas subjected to natural or human-induced fires.
     Anemone hupehensis var. japonica has wind-distributed 
seeds, and resists grazing because of toxic chemicals that induce 
vomiting when ingested.
     Angiopteris evecta forms dense stands that displace and 
shade out native plants.
     Axonopus fissifolius can outcompete other grasses in wet 
forests and bogs and outcompetes native plants for moisture.
     Buddleia asiatica can tolerate a wide range of habitats, 
forms dense thickets, and is rapidly spreading into wet forest and lava 
and cinder substrate areas in Hawaii, displacing native vegetation.
     Casuarina equisetifolia forms monotypic stands under which 
little else grows. It is thought that the roots and needle litter exude 
a chemical that kills other plants.
     Clidemia hirta forms a dense understory, shades out native 
plants, and prevents their regeneration.
     Delairea odorata covers and suppresses growth and 
germination of native species by carpeting the ground and rooting down 
at leaf nodes. This species can also grow in the canopy, where it 
smothers native trees.
     Digitaria setigera propagates by seeds and runners; a 
single flowering stem produces hundreds of seeds.
     Ehrharta stipoides creates a thick mat in which other 
species cannot regenerate; its seeds are easily dispersed by awns 
(slender, terminal bristle-like process found at the spikelette in many 
grasses) that attach to fur or clothing.
     Erigeron karvinskianus spreads rapidly by stem layering 
and regrowth of broken roots to form dense mats, crowding out and 
displacing ground-level plants.
     Falcataria moluccana can quickly establish in disturbed 
and nondisturbed mesic to wet areas. Its rapid growth habit enables it 
to outcompete slow-growing native trees by reducing light availability, 
and its abundant, high-quality litter alters nutrient dynamics in the 
soil.
     Grevillea spp. leaves produce an allelopathic substance 
that inhibits the establishment of all other plant species underneath 
the canopy.
     Hedychium spp. form vast, dense colonies, displacing other 
plant species, and reproduce by rhizomes where already established. In 
addition to outcompeting native plants, Hedychium spp. reduce the 
amount of nitrogen in the Metrosideros forest canopy in Hawaii, 
impacting the availability of nutrients for native plants.
     Heterotheca grandiflora is an opportunistic colonizer that 
grows quickly, forms dense stands, and inhibits recruitment of native 
plants.
     Juncus effusus spreads by seeds and rhizomes, and forms 
dense mats that crowd out native plants.
     Juncus is a weedy colonizer that can tolerate 
environmental stress and outcompete native species.
     Juncus planifolius forms dense mats and has the potential 
to displace native plants by preventing establishment of native 
seedlings.
     Lantana camara is aggressive, thorny, and forms thickets, 
crowding out and preventing the establishment of native plants.
     Leucaena leucocephala is an aggressive competitor that 
often forms the dominant element of the vegetation in low-elevation, 
dry, disturbed areas in Hawaii.
     Plants in the genus Melastoma have high germination rates, 
exhibit rapid growth, have possible asexual reproduction, and are 
efficient at seed dispersal, especially by birds that are attracted by 
copious production of berries. These characteristics enable the plants 
to be aggressive competitors in Hawaiian ecosystems.
     Melinis repens invades disturbed dry areas from coastal 
regions to subalpine forest; dense stands of this species can 
contribute to recurrent fires.
     Miconia calvescens reproduces in dense shade, eventually 
shading out all other plants to form a monoculture.
     Omalanthus populifolius has the potential to colonize 
entire gulches, displacing and inhibiting the regeneration of native 
plants.
     Paederia foetida (skunk weed) is a perennial climbing or 
trailing vine in the coffee family (Rubiaceae) that can grow to 30 ft 
(9 m) long and occurs on Kauai, Oahu, Maui, and Hawaii Island (Center 
for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health (CISEH 2010, in litt.; U.S. 
Forest Service 2013, in litt.). It reproduces vegetatively or by seed, 
and can invade natural and disturbed areas in Hawaii. It completely 
covers and smothers understory vegetation, outcompetes low-growing 
plants and small shrubs for light and space, and can form mat-like 
sheaths that may cover several acres (CISEH 2010, in litt.; U.S. Forest 
Service 2013, in litt.).
     Paspalum conjugatum has small, hairy seeds are easily 
transported on humans and animals, or are carried by the wind through 
native forests, where it establishes and displaces native vegetation.
     Passiflora edulis is a vigorous vine that overgrows and 
smothers the forest canopy; its fruit encourages rooting and trampling 
by feral pigs.
     Passiflora tarminiana is now a serious pest in mesic 
forest, where it overgrows and smothers the forest canopy. Seeds are 
readily dispersed by humans, birds, and feral pigs; fallen fruit 
encourage rooting and trampling by pigs.
     Pennisetum setaceum is an aggressive colonizer that 
outcompetes most native species by forming widespread, dense, thick 
mats. This species is also fire-adapted and burns swiftly and hot, 
causing extensive damage to the surrounding habitat.
     Pluchea spp. are adapted to a wide variety of soils and 
sites, tolerate excessively well-drained to poorly drained soil 
conditions, the full range of soil textures, acid and alkaline 
reactions, salt and salt spray, and compaction. They quickly invade 
burned areas, but being early successional, they are soon replaced by 
other species. These adaptive capabilities increase the species' 
competitive abilities over native plants.
     Polygonum punctatum forms dense patches that prohibit the 
establishment of native plants after disturbance events.
     Prosopis pallida overshadows other vegetation and has deep 
tap roots that significantly reduce available water for native dryland 
plants. This plant fixes nitrogen and can outcompete native species.
     Psidium cattleianum forms dense stands in which few other 
plants can grow, displacing native vegetation through competition. The 
fruit is eaten by feral pigs and birds that disperse the seeds 
throughout the forest.
     Rubus argutus displaces native vegetation through 
competition.
     Rubus ellipticus smothers smaller plants, including native 
species.
     Rubus rosifolius forms dense thickets and outcompetes 
native plant species. It easily reproduces from roots left in the 
ground, and seeds are spread by birds and feral animals.
     Schefflera actinophylla is shade tolerant and can spread 
deep into undisturbed forests, forming dense thickets, as its numerous 
seeds are readily dispersed by birds. It grows epiphytically, 
strangling its host tree.
     Schinus terebinthifolius forms dense thickets in all 
habitats, and its red berries are attractive to and dispersed by birds. 
The seedlings grow very slowly and can survive in dense shade, 
exhibiting vigorous growth when the canopy is opened after a 
disturbance, allowing it to displace native vegetation through 
competition.

[[Page 64662]]

     Senecio madagascariensis can produce abundant seeds each 
year that are easily distributed by wind. This combination of long-
range dispersal of its seeds and its allelopathic properties enables 
this species to successfully outcompete native plants.
     Setaria palmifolia is resistant to fire and recovers 
quickly after being burned, outcompeting native vegetation.
     Sphagneticola trilobata is a creeping, mat-forming, fast-
growing perennial herb in the sunflower (Asteraceae) family. It is 
found on all of the main Hawaiian Islands (Thaman 1999, pp. 1-10) and 
is considered one of Hawaii's most invasive horticultural plants. It 
has spread throughout the Pacific and in many cases has become a 
noxious weed, covering extensive areas in agricultural lands, along 
roadsides and trailsides, in open lots, in waste places and garbage 
dumps, and at other disturbed sites (Thaman 1999, pp. 1-10; HEAR 2013). 
This species can also be found in relatively undisturbed sites along 
coastlines, often out-competing native coastal herbaceous species, like 
Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana (Thaman 1999, pp. 1-10).
     Cyathea cooperi can achieve high densities in native 
Hawaiian forests and displace native species. Understory disturbance by 
feral pigs facilitates the establishment of this species, which has 
been known to spread over 7 mi (12 km) through windblown dispersal of 
spores from plant nurseries.
     Tibouchina spp. is naturalized and abundant in disturbed 
mesic to wet forest on the islands of Molokai, Lanai, Maui, and Hawaii. 
It forms dense thickets, crowding out all other plant species, and 
inhibits regeneration of native plants.
     Ulex europaeus spreads numerous seeds by explosive opening 
of the pods. It can rapidly form extensive dense and impenetrable 
infestations, and competes with native plants, preventing their 
establishment.
Nonnative Plants in the Coastal Ecosystem
    Nonnative plant species that pose a threat to Bidens hillebrandiana 
ssp. hillebrandiana, the only plant species in this final rule that 
inhabits the coastal ecosystem on Hawaii Island, include the understory 
and subcanopy species Pluchea carolinensis (sourbush), P. indica 
(Indian fleabane), Lantana camara (lantana), Melastoma spp., and 
Sphagneticola trilobata (wedelia) (Perlman and Wood 2006, in litt.; Bio 
2011, pers. comm.; Perry 2012, in litt.). These nonnative plants 
species are fast growing, and form either thickets or dense mats that 
crowd out and prevent establishment of individuals of Bidens 
hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana. Nonnative canopy species that pose 
a threat to B. hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana include Casuarina 
equisetifolia (ironwood), which form monotypic stands that prevent the 
growth of B. hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana below by over shading 
and accumulation of pine needle litter (Perlman and Wood 2006, in 
litt.). In addition, the nonnative grass Pennisetum setaceum (fountain 
grass) is a threat to B. hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana (Perlman 
and Wood 2006, in litt.; Bio 2011, pers. comm.) because fountain grass 
forms dense mats that cover very large areas, thus outcompeting B. 
hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, in addition to being a notorious 
fire-adapted plant that burns swiftly and hot, causing extensive damage 
to surrounding habitat. These nonnative plant species pose serious and 
ongoing threats to the species B. hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, 
which depends on this ecosystem.
Nonnative Plants in the Dry Cliff Ecosystem
    Nonnative plant species that are a threat to Bidens hillebrandiana 
ssp. hillebrandiana, the only plant species in this final rule that 
inhabits the dry cliff ecosystem on Hawaii Island, include the 
understory and subcanopy species Lantana camara, Melastoma spp., 
Pluchea carolinensis, and Sphagneticola trilobata (Perlman and Wood 
2006, in litt.; Bio 2011, pers. comm.; Perry 2012, in litt.). These 
nonnative plants species are fast growing, and form either thickets or 
dense mats that crowd out and prevent establishment of individuals of 
Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana. Nonnative canopy species 
that pose a threat to B. hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana include 
Casuarina equisetifolia and Psidium cattleianum (Perlman and Wood 2006, 
in litt.; Bio 2011, pers. comm.), which form monotypic stands that 
prevent the growth of B. hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana below by 
over shading and crowding out. In addition, Casuarina equisetifolia 
accumulates high levels of pine needle litter that further prevent 
understory growth. The nonnative grasses Digitaria setigera and 
Pennisetum setaceum pose a threat to this ecosystem (Perlman and Wood 
2006, in litt.; Bio 2011, pers. comm.). Fountain grass forms dense mats 
that cover very large areas, thus outcompeting Bidens hillebrandiana 
ssp. hillebrandiana, in addition to being a notorious fire adapted 
plant that burns swiftly and hot, causing extensive damage to 
surrounding habitat. Digitaria setigera propagates by seeds and 
runners, and a single flower stem produces hundreds of seeds, which 
crowds out Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, thus preventing 
regeneration. These nonnative plant species pose serious and ongoing 
threats to Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, which depends on 
this ecosystem.
Nonnative Plants in the Lowland Wet Ecosystem
    Nonnative plant species that are a threat to the 7 of the 13 plant 
species (Cyanea marksii, Cyanea tritomantha, Cyrtandra nanawaleensis, 
Cyrtandra wagneri, Phyllostegia floribunda, Platydesma remyi, and 
Pritchardia lanigera) in this final rule that inhabit the lowland wet 
ecosystem on Hawaii Island include the understory and subcanopy species 
Clidemia hirta (Koster's curse), Erigeron karvinskianus (daisy 
fleabane), Hedychium gardnerianum, Juncus effusus (Japanese mat rush), 
J. ensifolius (dagger-leaved rush), J. planifolius (bog rush), 
Melastoma spp., Paederia foetida (skunk weed), Passiflora edulis 
(passion fruit), P. tarminiana (banana poka), Polygonum punctatum 
(water smartweed), Rubus argutus (prickly Florida blackberry), 
R.ellipticus (yellow Himalayan raspberry), R. rosifolius, Cyathea 
cooperi (Australian tree fern), Tibouchina herbacea (glorybush), and T. 
urvilleana (princess flower) (Wood 1995, in litt.; Perlman et al. 2001, 
in litt.; Perlman and Wood 2006, in litt.; Perlman and Perry 2003, in 
litt.; Lorence and Perlman 2007, pp. 357-361; PEPP 2007, pp. 1-65; PEPP 
2008, pp. 87-111; Perlman and Bio 2008, in litt.; Perlman et al. 2008, 
in litt.; HBMP 2010c; HBMP 2010e; HBMP 2010f; HBMP 2010g; HBMP 2010h; 
HBMP 2010i; PEPP 2010, pp. 33-121; Perry 2012, in litt.). These 
understory nonnative plant species overcrowd, displace, smother, or 
shade out the seven plant species listed as endangered species in this 
rule (see above) that occupy the lowland wet ecosystem. Nonnative 
canopy species that are a threat to the seven species include 
Angiopteris evecta (mule's foot fern), Falcataria moluccana (albizia), 
Miconia calvescens (miconia), Psidium cattleianum, and Schefflera 
actinophylla (octopus tree) (Palmer 2003, p. 48; HBMP 2010c; HBMP 
2010e; HBMP 2010f; HBMP 2010g; HBMP 2010h; HBMP 2010i; PEPP 2010, p. 
62; Lau 2011, in litt.; Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.; Pratt 2011a, in 
litt.; Price 2011, in litt.). These nonnative canopy species form dense 
stands that shade out and over crowd the 7 plant species listed as

[[Page 64663]]

endangered species in this rule (see above) that inhabit the lowland 
wet ecosystem. Nonnative grasses that pose a threat to this ecosystem 
are Ehrharta stipoides and Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass) (Lorence and 
Perlman 2007, pp. 357-361; PEPP 2007, pp. 1-65; HBMP 2010c; HBMP 2010f; 
HBMP 2010g), because they form thick mats that prevent growth and 
regeneration of the seven plant species listed as endangered species 
(see above) in this rule that occupy the lowland wet ecosystem.These 
nonnative plant species pose serious and ongoing threats to the seven 
species that depend on this ecosystem.
Nonnative Plants in the Wet Cliff Ecosystem
    Nonnative plant species that pose a threat to the three plant 
species (Cyanea tritomantha, Pritchardia lanigera, and Stenogyne 
cranwelliae) in this final rule that inhabit the wet cliff ecosystem on 
Hawaii Island include the canopy, understory and subcanopy species 
Hedychium coronarium, H. gardnerianum, Juncus effusus, Passiflora 
tarminiana, Psidium cattleianum, Rubus rosifolius, Tibouchina herbacea, 
and T. urvilleana (HBMP 2010c; HBMP 2010f; HBMP 2010k; Perry 2012, in 
litt.). These understory nonnative plant species overcrowd, displace, 
smother, or shade out the three plant species listed as endangered 
species in this rule (see above) that occupy the wet cliff ecosystem. 
The nonnative grasses Axonopus fissifolius, Ehrharta stipoides, 
Paspalum conjugatum, and Setaria palmifolia also pose a threat to the 
three species in this ecosystem (HBMP 2010c; HBMP 2010f; HBMP 2010k), 
because they form thick mats that prevent growth and regeneration. 
These nonnative plant species pose serious and ongoing threats to the 
three species that depend on this ecosystem.
Habitat Destruction and Modification by Fire
    Fire is an increasing, human-exacerbated threat to native species 
and native ecosystems in Hawaii. The historical fire regime in Hawaii 
was characterized by infrequent, low severity fires, as few natural 
ignition sources existed (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 91; Smith and 
Tunison 1992, pp. 395-397). It is believed that prior to human 
colonization, fuel was sparse and inflammable in wet plant communities 
and seasonally flammable in mesic and dry plant communities. The 
primary ignition sources were volcanism and lightning (Baker et al. 
2009, p. 43). Natural fuel beds were often discontinuous, and rainfall 
in many areas on most islands was, and is, moderate to high. Fires 
inadvertently or intentionally ignited by the original Polynesians in 
Hawaii probably contributed to the initial decline of native vegetation 
in the drier plains and foothills. These early settlers practiced 
slash-and-burn agriculture that created open lowland areas suitable for 
the later colonization of nonnative, fire-adapted grasses (Kirch 1982, 
pp. 5-6, 8; Cuddihy and Stone 1990, pp. 30-31). Beginning in the late 
18th century, Europeans and Americans introduced plants and animals 
that further degraded native Hawaiian ecosystems. Pasturage and 
ranching, in particular, created high fire-prone areas of nonnative 
grasses and shrubs (D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, p. 67). Although fires 
were historically infrequent in mountainous regions, extensive fires 
have recently occurred in lowland dry and lowland mesic areas, leading 
to grass-fire cycles that convert forest to grasslands (D'Antonio and 
Vitousek 1992, p. 77).
    Because several Hawaiian plants show some tolerance of fire, Vogl 
proposed that naturally occurring fires may have been important in the 
development of the original Hawaiian flora (Vogl 1969 in Cuddihy and 
Stone 1990, p. 91; Smith and Tunison 1992, p. 394). However, Mueller-
Dombois (1981 in Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 91) points out that most 
natural vegetation types in Hawaii would not carry fire before the 
introduction of alien grasses, and Smith and Tunison (1992, p. 396) 
state that native plant fuels typically have low flammability. Because 
of the greater frequency, intensity, and duration of fires that have 
resulted from the introduction of nonnative plants (especially 
grasses), fires are now destructive to native Hawaiian ecosystems 
(Brown and Smith 2000, p. 172), and a single grass-fueled fire can kill 
most native trees and shrubs in the burned area (D'Antonio and Vitousek 
1992, p. 74).
    Fire represents a threat to four of the species found in the 
lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, and montane mesic 
ecosystems addressed in this final rule: the plants Bidens micrantha 
ssp. ctenophylla, Phyllostegia floribunda, and Schiedea hawaiiensis; 
and the picture-wing fly (see Table 3). Fire can destroy dormant seeds 
of these species as well as plants themselves, even in steep or 
inaccessible areas. Successive fires that burn farther and farther into 
native habitat destroy native plants and remove habitat for native 
species by altering microclimate conditions favorable to alien plants. 
Alien plant species most likely to be spread as a consequence of fire 
are those that produce a high fuel load, are adapted to survive and 
regenerate after fire, and establish rapidly in newly burned areas. 
Grasses (particularly those that produce mats of dry material or retain 
a mass of standing dead leaves) that invade native forests and 
shrublands provide fuels that allow fire to burn areas that would not 
otherwise easily burn (Fujioka and Fujii 1980 in Cuddihy and Stone 
1990, p. 93; D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, pp. 70, 73-74; Tunison et al. 
2002, p. 122). Native woody plants may recover from fire to some 
degree, but fire shifts the competitive balance toward alien species 
(National Park Service (NPS) 1989, in Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 93). 
On a post-burn survey at Puuwaawaa on Hawaii Island, an area of native 
Diospyros forest with undergrowth of the nonnative grass Pennisetum 
setaceum, Takeuchi noted that ``no regeneration of native canopy is 
occurring within the Puuwaawaa burn area'' (Takeuchi 1991, p. 2). 
Takeuchi (1991, pp. 4, 6) also stated that ``burn events served to 
accelerate a decline process already in place, compressing into days a 
sequence that would ordinarily take decades,'' and concluded that in 
addition to increasing the number of fires, the nonnative Pennisetum 
acted to suppress the establishment of native plants after a fire.
    For decades, fires have impacted rare or endangered species and 
their habitat (HDOFAW 2002, pp. 1, 4-6; Dayton 2007, in litt.; Joint 
Fire Science Program (JFSP) 2009, pp. 1-12; Weise et al. 2010, pp. 199-
220; Kakesako 2011, in litt.). On the island of Hawaii, wildfires are 
caused primarily by lava flows, humans, and lightning, all of which are 
exacerbated by severe drought and nonnative grasses (e.g., Pennisetum 
setaceum) (Dayton 2007, in litt.; JFSP 2009, pp. 1-6; Armstrong and 
Media 2010, in litt.; Weise et al. 2010, pp. 199-216; Adkins et al. 
2011, p. 17; Hawaii County Major.com-accessed September 7, 2011; 
Burnett 2010, in litt.; KHON2, June 6, 2011). Between 2002 and 2003, 
three successive lava-ignited wildfires in the east rift zone of HVNP 
affected native forests in lowland dry, lowland mesic, and lowland wet 
ecosystems (JFSP 2009, p. 3), cumulatively burning an estimated 11,225 
ac (4,543 ha) (Wildfire News, June 9, 2003; JFSP 2009, p. 3). These 
fires destroyed over 95 percent of the canopy cover in the burned areas 
and encroached upon rainforests (i.e., forests in the lowland wet 
ecosystem) that were previously thought to have low susceptibility or

[[Page 64664]]

even be relatively immune to wildfires (JFSP 2009, pp. 2-3; Wildfire 
News, June 9, 2003). After the fires, nonnative ferns were reported in 
the higher elevation rainforests where they had not previously been 
observed, and were believed to inhibit the ability of the dominant 
native Metrosideros polymorpha (ohia) trees to recover (JFSP 2003, pp. 
1-2). Nonnative flammable grasses also spread in the area, under the 
dead ohia trees (Ainsworth 2011, in litt.), increasing the risk of fire 
in surrounding native forested areas. In 2011, the Napau Crater 
wildfire, ignited by an eruption at the Kamoamoa fissure in HVNP, 
consumed over 2,076 ac (840 ha), including 100 ac (40 ha) of the 2,750-
ac (1,113-ha) east rift zone's special ecological area (Ainsworth 2011, 
in litt.; Kakesako 2011, in litt.). Special ecological areas (SEA) are 
HVNP's most intact and intensively managed natural systems (Tunison and 
Stone 1992, pp. 781-798). The plant Phyllostegia floribunda, in this 
final rule, is known from the east rift zone's Napau Crater, in the 
lowland wet ecosystem (Belfield 1998, pp. 9, 11-13, 23; Pratt 2007b, in 
litt.; HBMP 2010h). In addition, historical records report that the 
plant Cyanea tritomantha, which is listed as endangered in this rule, 
also occurred in this area, in the same ecosystem; however, the last 
survey that reported this occurrence was over 25 years ago (Lamoureux 
et al. 1985, pp. 105, 107-108; HBMP 2010h).
    Fire is a threat to the Kona (leeward) side of Hawaii Island. In 
the past 50 years, there have been three wildfires that burned 20,000 
ac (8,094 ha) or more: (1) 20,000 ac (8,094 ha) burned at Puuwaawaa 
Ranch in 1985; (2) 20,000 acres (8,094 ha) burned at the U.S. Army's 
PTA in 1994; and (3) 25,000 ac (10,117 ha) burned in Waikoloa in 2005 
(Thompson 2005, in litt.). The only known occurrence (25 to 40 
individuals) of the plant Schiedea hawaiiensis, in this final rule, is 
found on PTA, and the 1994 fire burned to within 2 mi (4 km) of this 
species (U.S. Army Garrison 2006, p. 34; Evans 2011, in litt.). 
Although this fire may seem relatively distant from S. hawaiiensis, 
wildfires can travel from 4 to 8 miles per hour (mph) (6.5 to 13 
kilometers per hour (kph)), and burn 2.5 ac (1 ha) to 6 ac (2.5 ha) per 
minute (the equivalent of 6 to 8 football fields per minute), depending 
on the fuel type, wind, and slope of land (Burn Institute 2009, p. 4). 
In 2011, a 500-ac (202-ha) wildfire ignited by lightning and fueled by 
nonnative Pennisetum setaceum burned within the State's Puu Anahulu 
Game Management Area (GMA) and encroached within a quarter-mile (0.5 
km) of PTA (KHON2, June 6, 2011). The Puu Anahulu GMA lies just 3 mi (5 
km) northwest of the only known occurrence of S. hawaiiensis in the 
montane dry ecosystem. Also in 2011, a 120-ac (49-ha) wildfire broke 
out near Kaiminani Street (Jensen 2011, in litt.), just north of Hina 
Lani Road, in the lowland dry ecosystem, where the largest occurrence 
of the plant species Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, which is listed 
as endangered in this rule, is found. In addition, the threat of fire 
to this species is increased by its occurrence in areas bordered by 
residential developments, schools, and roads, which provide numerous 
ignition sources from the high volume of human traffic. A recent fire 
at the Villages of Laiopua subdivision at Kealakehe, known to have been 
intentionally set, burned close to an area that supports B. micrantha 
ssp. ctenophylla (Knoche 2012, in litt.). Although no B. micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla individuals were burned, the immediate proximity of the 
fire to occupied and unoccupied habitat for this species demonstrates 
the threat of fire to B. micrantha ssp. ctenophylla in the lowland dry 
ecosystem at Kealakehe.
    Fire is also a threat to the picture-wing fly Drosophila digressa 
at one of its two known locations (the Manuka NAR) due to the ongoing 
extreme drought conditions in this region and the resulting 
accumulation of dead trees (i.e., fuel load), in the lowland mesic and 
montane mesic ecosystems (Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.).
    Throughout the Hawaiian Islands, increased fuel loads and human-
ignited fires caused the average acreage burned to increase five-fold 
from the early 1900s (1904 to 1939) to the mid-1900s (1940 to 1976) (La 
Rosa et al. 2008, p. 231). In HVNP, fires were three times more 
frequent and 60 times larger, on average, from the late 1960s to 1995, 
when compared to data spanning 1934 to the late 1960s (Tunison et al. 
2001 in La Rosa et al. 2008, p. 231). The historical fire regimes have 
been altered from typically rare events to more frequent events, 
largely a result of continuous fine fuel loads associated with the 
presence of the fire-tolerant, nonnative fountain grass and the grass-
fire feedback cycle that promotes its establishment (La Rosa et al. 
2008, pp. 240-241; Pau 2009, in litt.). Extreme drought conditions are 
also contributing to the number and intensity of the wildfires on 
Hawaii Island (Armstrong and Media 2010, in litt.; Loh 2010, in litt.). 
In addition, the combination of El Ni[ntilde]o conditions (see 
``Habitat Destruction and Modification by Climate Change,'' below) in 
the Pacific, a half-century decline in annual rainfall, and 
intermittent dry spells has fueled wildfires throughout all of the main 
Hawaiian Islands (Marcus 2010, in litt.). The entire State is 
experiencing dry conditions, but Hawaii Island appears to be 
significantly impacted (Kodama 2010, in litt.; USDA-FSA 2012, in 
litt.).
    Fire is a threat to three plant species (Bidens micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla, Phyllostegia floribunda, and Schiedea hawaiiensis), and 
the picture-wing fly (Drosophila digressa), reported from Hawaii 
Island's lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, and 
montane mesic ecosystems, because individuals of these species or their 
habitat are located in or near areas that were burned in previous fires 
or in areas at risk for fire due to volcanic activity, drought, or the 
presence of highly flammable nonnative grasses and shrubs.
Habitat Destruction and Modification by Hurricanes
    Hurricanes adversely impact native Hawaiian terrestrial habitat and 
exacerbate the impacts resulting from other threats such as habitat 
degradation by ungulates and competition with nonnative plants. They do 
this by destroying native vegetation, opening the canopy and thus 
modifying the availability of light, and creating disturbed areas 
conducive to invasion by nonnative pest species (see ``Specific 
Nonnative Plant Species Impacts,'' on page 63952 of our October 17, 
2012, proposed rule (77 FR 63928)) (Asner and Goldstein 1997, p. 148; 
Harrington et al. 1997, pp. 539-540). Canopy gaps allow for the 
establishment of nonnative plant species, which may be present as 
plants or as seeds incapable of growing under shaded conditions. 
Because many Hawaiian plant and animal species, including the 15 
species in this final rule, persist in low numbers and in restricted 
ranges, natural disasters, such as hurricanes, can be particularly 
devastating (Mitchell et al. 2005a, pp. 3-4), although we do not 
consider hurricanes to represent a present threat to Vetericaris 
chaceorum.
    Hurricanes affecting Hawaii were only rarely reported from ships in 
the area from the 1800s until 1949. Between 1950 and 1997, 22 
hurricanes passed near or over the Hawaiian Islands, 5 of which caused 
serious damage (Businger 1998, pp. 1-2). In November 1982, Hurricane 
Iwa struck the Hawaiian Islands, with wind gusts exceeding 100 mph (161 
kph), causing extensive damage, especially on the islands of Niihau, 
Kauai, and Oahu (Businger 1998, pp. 2, 6). Many forest trees were

[[Page 64665]]

destroyed (Perlman 1992, pp. 1-9), which opened the canopy and 
facilitated the invasion of nonnative plants (Kitayama and Mueller-
Dombois 1995, p. 671). Competition with nonnative plants is a threat to 
9 of the 10 ecosystems that support all 13 plant species and the 
picture-wing fly listed as endangered in this final rule, as described 
above in ``Habitat Destruction and Modification by Nonnative Plants.'' 
Nonnative plants also compete with the native host plants of the 
picture-wing fly.
    In addition to habitat destruction and nonnative plant introduction 
resulting from hurricanes, high winds and intense rains from hurricanes 
can directly kill individual picture-wing flies to the point of 
decimating an entire population (Carson 1986, p. 7; Foote and Carson 
1995, pp. 369-370). High winds can also dislodge fly larvae from their 
host plants, destroy host plants, and expose the fly larvae to 
predation by nonnative yellowjacket wasps (see ``Nonnative Western 
Yellow-Jacket Wasps,'' under Factor C. Disease or Predation, below) 
(Carson 1986, p. 7; Foote and Carson 1995, p. 371).
    Since 1950, 13 hurricanes have passed near but not over Hawaii 
Island. Eleven of these hurricanes brought heavy rain, strong wind, or 
high surf to the island, which caused erosion, flash floods, and other 
damage (Fletcher III et al. 2002, pp. 11-17; National Weather Service 
et al. 2010, pp. 1-22). In 1994, tropical depression 1C brought over 14 
in (36 cm) of rain in just a few days to windward sections of Hawaii 
Island (National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) 1994, pp. 4-
5; National Weather Service et al. 2010, pp. 4-5).
    Although there is historical evidence of only one hurricane (1861) 
that approached from the east and impacted the islands of Maui and 
Hawaii (Businger 1998, p. 3), damage from future hurricanes could 
further decrease the remaining native plant-dominated habitat areas 
that support the 13 plant species and the picture-wing fly (Drosophila 
digressa) listed as endangered in this final rule, in 9 of the 
described ecosystems (coastal, lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland wet, 
montane dry, montane mesic, montane wet, dry cliff, and wet cliff).
Habitat Destruction and Modification Due to Rockfalls, Treefalls, 
Landslides, Heavy Rain, Inundation by High Surf, Erosion, and Drought
    Rockfalls, treefalls, landslides, heavy rain, inundation by high 
surf, and erosion damage and destroy individual plants, destabilize 
substrates, and alter hydrological patterns that result in changes to 
native plant and animal communities. In the open sea near Hawaii, 
rainfall averages 25 to 30 in (635 to 762 mm) per year, yet the islands 
may receive up to 15 times this amount in some places, caused by 
orographic features (physical geography of mountains) (Wagner et al. 
1999a, pp. 36-44). During storms, rain may fall at 3 in (76 mm) per 
hour or more, and sometimes may reach nearly 40 in (1,000 mm) in 24 
hours, causing destructive flash-flooding in streams and narrow gulches 
(Wagner et al. 1999a, pp. 36-44). Due to the steep topography of some 
areas on Hawaii Island where 4 of the 13 plants listed as endangered in 
this final rule remain, erosion and disturbance caused by introduced 
ungulates exacerbates the potential for rockfalls, treefalls, and 
landslides, which in turn are a threat to native plants. Such events 
have the potential to eliminate all individuals of a population, or 
even all populations of a species, resulting in a greater likelihood of 
extinction due to the lack of redundancy and resilience of the species 
caused by their reduced numbers and geographic range.
    Rockfalls, treefalls, landslides, heavy rain, inundation by high 
surf, and subsequent erosion are a threat to four of the plant species 
(Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, Cyanea marksii, Cyanea 
tritomantha, and Cyrtandra wagneri) listed as endangered in this rule 
(Lorence and Perlman 2007, p. 359; PEPP 2010, p. 52; Bio 2011, pers. 
comm.). Monitoring data from PEPP and other field biologists and 
surveyors indicate that these four species are threatened by these 
events as they are found in landscape settings susceptible to these 
events (e.g., lava tubes, stream banks, steep slopes and cliffs). Field 
survey data presented by PEPP and other field biologists document that 
individuals of Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana that occur on 
steep sea cliffs are threatened by rockfalls, landslides, inundation by 
high surf, and subsequent erosion; 1 of the 27 known individuals of 
Cyanea marksii is threatened by falling rocks and landslides; and 
individuals of Cyanea tritomantha are threatened by treefalls (PEPP 
2007, p. 52; Bio 2011, pers. comm.; Perry 2012, in litt.). Field survey 
data presented by Lorence and Perlman (2007, p. 359) indicate that 
heavy rains and subsequent erosion threaten the only known location of 
Cyrtandra wagneri on a stream bank in the Laupahoehoe NAR. As Cyrtandra 
wagneri is currently only known from a total of eight individuals along 
the steep banks of Kilau Stream, heavy rains and erosion could lead to 
near extirpation or even extinction of this species by direct 
destruction of the individual plants, mechanical damage to individual 
plants that could lead to their death, or destabilization of the stream 
bank habitat leading to additional erosion.
    Two plant species, Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla and Schiedea 
hawaiiensis, and the picture-wing fly (Drosophila digressa), which are 
listed as endangered in this final rule, may also be affected by 
habitat loss or degradation associated with droughts, which are not 
uncommon in the Hawaiian Islands (HDLNR 2009, pp. 1-6; Hawaii State 
Civil Defense 2011, pp. 14-1--14-12; U.S. National Drought Mitigation 
Center (NDMC) 2012--Online Archives). Between 1901 and 2011, there have 
been at least 18 serious or severe droughts that have impacted Hawaii 
Island, including the current drought that began in 2008, and has led 
to the island's first ever drought exceptional designation (the highest 
drought level rating on the scale) (between March and December of 2010) 
(HDLNR 2009, pp. 1-6; Hawaii Civil Defense 2011, pp. 14-1--14-12). 
According to the NDMC's drought rating system, most of the island has 
been rated as in severe drought since 2008, with extreme drought 
ratings intermittently in some portions of the island (NDMC 2012--
Online Archives). Giambelluca et al. (1991, pp. 3-4) compiled 
descriptive accounts of drought throughout the Hawaiian Islands between 
1860 and 1986, and found that 87 episodes of drought occurred on Hawaii 
Island between those years, although some of those episodes occurred 
for periods as short as one month. The 2011 winter weather system 
brought periods of heavy rain from Kauai to Maui; however, these 
systems weakened or moved away from Hawaii Island, leaving the 
typically wet windward slopes of the island under moderate drought 
conditions (NOAA 2011--Online Climate Data Center). The entire windward 
side of Hawaii Island is currently in an abnormally dry state (NDMC 
2011--Online Archives; NDMC 2012--Online Archives). As of March 2013, 
the U.S. Drought Monitor (USDM) (USDM 2013--Online Database; USDM 
2013--Online Archives) continues to report severe drought (a D2 rating-
on a scale ranging from D0 (abnormally dry), D1 (moderate), D3 
(extreme), to D4 (exceptional)) along the entire leeward side of Hawaii 
Island, with extreme drought in some areas of North Kona and South 
Kohala. Drought conditions

[[Page 64666]]

are expected to continue on Hawaii Island (NOAA 2013, in litt.).
    Pohakuloa Training Area (the location of the only known individuals 
of the plant Schiedea hawaiiensis) was rated as experiencing extreme 
drought during the spring of 2011 (Hawaii State Civil Defense 2011, pp. 
14-1--14-12), and in 2010, as well as most of north and south Kona. 
North Kona, including the lowland dry ecosystem that supports the 
largest occurrence of the plant Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, has 
been experiencing conditions of extreme to severe drought over the past 
few years. One of the two known extant populations of the picture-wing 
fly Drosophila digressa is found in the lowland mesic and montane mesic 
ecosystems in south Kona, in an area that has also experienced extreme 
to severe drought over the past few years. Drought alters the decay 
processes of the picture-wing fly's host plants (Charpentiera spp. and 
Pisonia spp.) and the entire plant community on which the fly depends. 
The ongoing drought in south Kona has resulted in an increasing 
accumulation of dead trees in the Manuka NAR, which increases the fuel 
load and threat of wildfires in the area where one of the two known 
occurrences of the picture-wing fly is found (Magnacca 2011b, pers. 
comm.). According to Magnacca (2013, in litt.) almost the entire ohia 
(Metrosideros polymorpha) canopy at the Manuka NAR has died over the 
past 10 to 20 years, due to prolonged drought. This area previously 
received most of its water input from fog interception by the tall ohia 
trees rather than rainfall (Magnacca 2013, in litt.). Although the 
dominant host plant of the picture-wing fly at this site, Pisonia spp., 
is temporarily experiencing a growth spurt due to increase in sunlight 
caused from the ohia dieback, Magnacca believes this increase in 
Pisonia spp. seedlings and juveniles is unlikely to be sustained over 
time. If these plants survive to maturity, Magnacca doubts the much 
drier habitat conditions will be suitable to support the picture-wing 
fly (Magnacca 2013, in litt.). Monitoring data collected in HVNP during 
a drought period between 1981 and 1982 suggest that drought was 
associated with a reduction in the number of picture-wing flies one 
year following the drought (Carson 1986, pp. 4, 7).
    Severe episodes of drought cannot only directly kill individuals of 
a species or entire populations, but drought frequently leads to an 
increase in the number and intensity of forest and brush fires (see 
``Habitat Destruction and Modification by Fire,'' above), causing a 
reduction of native plant cover and habitat, an increase in nonnative 
plant and animal species, and a reduction in availability of host 
plants for the picture-wing fly (Giambelluca et al. 1991, p. v; 
D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, pp. 77-79; HDLNR 2009, pp. 1-6; Hawaii 
Civil Defense 2011, pp. 14-1--14-12). Ecosystems altered by drought and 
subsequent fires are further altered by the introduction of nonnative 
species that outcompete native species for basic life-cycle 
requirements (see ``Habitat Destruction and Modification by Nonnative 
Plants,'' above). To further exacerbate the situation, nonnative 
ungulate patterns may be altered as observed on Maui, where recent 
episodes of drought have driven axis deer farther into urban and 
forested areas for food, increasing their negative impacts to native 
vegetation from herbivory and trampling (Waring 1996, in litt., p. 5; 
Nishibayashi 2001, in litt.; Medeiros 2010, pers. comm.). Due to the 
recent widespread increase in frequency and intensity of drought on the 
island of Hawaii, even the wettest forests on the windward side of the 
island may be threatened by long-term drought (JFSP 2009, pp. 1-12). 
Prolonged periods of water deprivation caused by drought can also lead 
to the direct death of the remaining individuals of the plants Schiedea 
hawaiiensis and Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, and the picture-wing 
fly, possibly leading to extinction of one or more of these species. 
Drought is a direct threat to two of the plant species (Bidens 
micrantha ssp. ctenophylla and Schiedea hawaiiensis), and the picture-
wing fly (Drosophila digressa), which are listed as endangered in this 
final rule, as discussed above.
Habitat Destruction and Modification by Climate Change
    Our analyses under the Act include consideration of ongoing and 
projected changes in climate. The terms ``climate'' and ``climate 
change'' are defined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 
(IPCC). ``Climate'' refers to the mean and variability of different 
types of weather conditions over time, with 30 years being a typical 
period for such measurements, although shorter or longer periods also 
may be used (Le Treut et al. 2007, pp. 93-127). The term ``climate 
change'' thus refers to a change in the mean or variability of one or 
more measures of climate (e.g., temperature or precipitation) that 
persists for an extended period, typically decades or longer, whether 
the change is due to natural variability, human activity, or both (Le 
Treut et al. 2007, pp. 93-127). Various types of changes in climate can 
have direct or indirect effects on species. These effects may be 
positive, neutral, or negative, and they may change over time, 
depending on the species and other relevant considerations, such as the 
effects of interactions of climate with other variables (e.g., habitat 
fragmentation) (IPCC 2007, pp. 8-14, 18-19). In our analyses, we use 
our expert judgment to weigh relevant information, including 
uncertainty, in our consideration of various aspects of climate change.
    Climate change will be a particular challenge for the conservation 
of biodiversity because the introduction and interaction of additional 
stressors may push species beyond their ability to survive (Lovejoy 
2005, pp. 325-326). The synergistic implications of climate change and 
habitat fragmentation are the most threatening facet of climate change 
for biodiversity (Hannah et al. 2005, p. 4).
    The magnitude and intensity of the impacts of global climate change 
and increasing temperatures on native Hawaiian ecosystems are unknown. 
Currently, there are no climate change studies that specifically 
address impacts to the Hawaii Island ecosystems discussed here or the 
15 species at issue in this rule. Based on the best available 
information, climate change impacts could lead to the loss of native 
species that comprise the communities in which the 15 species occur 
(Pounds et al. 1999, pp. 611-612; Still et al. 1999, p. 610; Benning et 
al. 2002, pp. 14,246-14,248; Allen et al. 2010, pp. 660-662; Sturrock 
et al. 2011, p. 144; Towsend et al. 2011, p. 15; Warren 2011, pp. 221-
226). In addition, weather regime changes (droughts, floods) will 
likely result from increased annual average temperatures related to 
more frequent El Ni[ntilde]o episodes in Hawaii (Giambelluca et al. 
1991, p. v). Future changes in precipitation and the forecast of those 
changes are highly uncertain because they depend, in part, on how the 
El Ni[ntilde]o-La Ni[ntilde]a weather cycle (a disruption of the ocean 
atmospheric system in the tropical Pacific having important global 
consequences for weather and climate) might change (State of Hawaii 
1998, pp. 2-10). The 15 species in this final rule may be especially 
vulnerable to extinction due to anticipated environmental changes that 
may result from global climate change, due to their small population 
size and highly restricted ranges. Environmental changes that may 
affect these species are expected to include habitat loss or alteration 
and changes in disturbance regimes (e.g., storms and hurricanes). The 
probability of a species going extinct as a result of these factors 
increases when its range is restricted,

[[Page 64667]]

habitat decreases, and population numbers decline (IPCC 2007, p. 8). 
The 15 species have limited environmental tolerances, limited ranges, 
restricted habitat requirements, small population sizes, and low 
numbers of individuals. Therefore, we would expect these species to be 
particularly vulnerable to projected environmental impacts that may 
result from changes in climate, and subsequent impacts to their 
habitats (e.g., Pounds et al. 1999, pp. 611-612; Still et al. 1999, p. 
610; Benning et al. 2002, pp. 14,246-14,248). We believe changes in 
environmental conditions that may result from climate change may impact 
these 15 species and their habitat, and we do not anticipate a 
reduction in this potential threat in the near future.
Climate Change and Ambient Temperature
    The average ambient air temperature (at sea level) is projected to 
increase by about 4.1 degrees Fahrenheit ([deg]F) (2.3 degrees 
Centigrade ([deg]C)) with a range of 2.7 [deg]F to 6.7 [deg]F (1.5 
[deg]C to 3.7 [deg]C) by 2100 worldwide (Trenberth et al. 2007, pp. 
235-336). These changes would increase the monthly average temperature 
of the Hawaiian Islands from the current value of 74 [deg]F (23.3 
[deg]C) to between 77 [deg]F and 86 [deg]F (25 [deg]C and 30 [deg]C). 
Historically, temperature has been rising over the last 100 years, with 
the greatest increase after 1975 (Alexander et al. 2006, pp. 1-22; 
Giambelluca et al. 2008, p. 1). The rate of increase at low elevation 
(0.16 [deg]F; 0.09 [deg]C) per decade is below the observed global 
temperature rise of 0.32 [deg]F (0.18 [deg]C) per decade (Trenberth et 
al. 2007, pp. 235-336). However, at high elevations, the rate of 
increase (0.48 [deg]F (0.27 [deg]C) per decade) greatly exceeds the 
global rate (Trenberth et al. 2007, pp. 235-336).
    Overall, the daily temperature range in Hawaii is decreasing, 
resulting in a warmer environment, especially at higher elevations and 
at night. In the main Hawaiian Islands, predicted changes associated 
with increases in temperature include a shift in vegetation zones 
upslope, shift in animal species' ranges, changes in mean precipitation 
with unpredictable effects on local environments, increased occurrence 
of drought cycles, and increases in the intensity and number of 
hurricanes (Loope and Giambelluca 1998, pp. 514-515; U.S. Global Change 
Research Program (US-GCRP) 2009, pp. 1-188). In addition, weather 
regime changes (e.g., droughts, floods) will likely result from 
increased annual average temperatures related to more frequent El 
Ni[ntilde]o episodes in Hawaii (Giambelluca et al. 1991, p. v). 
However, despite considerable progress made by expert scientists toward 
understanding the impacts of climate change on many of the processes 
that contribute to El Ni[ntilde]o variability, it is not possible to 
say whether or not El Ni[ntilde]o activity will be affected by climate 
change (Collins et al. 2010, p. 391).
    Globally, the warming atmosphere is creating a plethora of 
anticipated and unanticipated environmental changes such as melting ice 
caps, decline in annual snow mass, sea-level rise, ocean acidification, 
increase in storm frequency and intensity (e.g., hurricanes, cyclones, 
and tornadoes), and altered precipitation patterns that contribute to 
regional increases in floods, heat waves, drought, and wildfires that 
also displace species and alter or destroy natural ecosystems (Pounds 
et al. 1999, pp. 611-612; IPCC AR4 2007, pp. 26-73; Marshall et al. 
2008, p. 273; U.S. Climate Change Science Program 2008, pp. 1-164; 
Flannigan et al. 2009, p. 483; US-GCRP 2009, pp. 1-188; Allen et al. 
2010, pp. 660-662; Warren 2011, pp. 221-226). These environmental 
changes are predicted to alter species' migration patterns, lifecycles, 
and ecosystem processes, such as nutrient cycles, water availability, 
and decomposition (IPCC AR4 2007, pp. 26-73; Pounds et al. 1999, pp. 
611-612; Sturrock et al. 2011, p. 144; Townsend et al. 2011, p. 15; 
Warren 2011, pp. 221-226). The species extinction rate is predicted to 
increase congruent with ambient temperature increase (US-GCRP 2009, pp. 
1-188). In Hawaii, these environmental changes associated with a rise 
in ambient temperature can directly and indirectly impact the survival 
of native plants and animals, including the 15 species in this final 
rule, and the ecosystems that support them.
Climate Change and Precipitation
    As global surface temperature rises, the evaporation of water vapor 
increases, resulting in higher concentrations of water vapor in the 
atmosphere, further resulting in altered global precipitation patterns 
(U.S. National Science and Technology Council (US-NSTC) 2008, pp. 69-
94; US-GCRP 2009, pp. 1-188). While annual global precipitation has 
increased over the last 100 years, the combined effect of increases in 
evaporation and evapotranspiration is causing land surface drying in 
some regions leading to a greater incidence and severity of drought 
(US-NSTC 2008, pp. 69-94; US-GCRP 2009, pp. 1-188). Over the past 100 
years, the Hawaiian Islands have experienced an annual decline in 
precipitation of just over 9 percent (US-NSTC 2008, p. 70). Other data 
on precipitation in Hawaii, which include sea-level precipitation and 
the added orographic effects, show a steady and significant decline of 
about 15 percent over the last 15 to 20 years (Chu and Chen 2005, pp. 
4,881-4,900; Diaz et al. 2005, pp. 1-3). Exact future changes in 
precipitation in Hawaii and the forecast of those changes are uncertain 
because they depend, in part, on how the El Ni[ntilde]o-La Ni[ntilde]a 
weather cycle might change (State of Hawaii 1998, pp. 2-10).
    In the oceans around Hawaii, the average annual rainfall at sea 
level is about 25 in (63.5 cm). The orographic features of the islands 
increase this annual average to about 70 in (177.8 cm) but can exceed 
240 in (609.6 cm) in the wettest mountain areas. Rainfall is 
distributed unevenly across each high island, and rainfall gradients 
are extreme (approximately 25 in (63.5 cm) per mile), creating both 
very dry and very wet areas. Global climate modeling predicts that, by 
2100, net precipitation at sea level near the Hawaiian Islands will 
decrease in winter by about 4 to 6 percent, with no significant change 
during summer (IPCC AR4 2007, pp. 1-73). Downscaling of global climate 
models indicates that wet-season (winter) precipitation will decrease 
by 5 percent to 10 percent, while dry-season (summer) precipitation 
will increase by about 5 percent (Timm and Diaz 2009, pp. 4,261-4,280). 
These data are also supported by a steady decline in stream flow 
beginning in the early 1940s (Oki 2004, p. 1). Altered seasonal 
moisture regimes can have negative impacts on plant growth cycles and 
overall negative impacts on natural ecosystems (US-GCRP 2009, pp. 1-
188). Long periods of decline in annual precipitation result in a 
reduction in moisture availability; an increase in drought frequency 
and intensity; and a self-perpetuating cycle of nonnative plants, fire, 
and erosion (US-GCRP 2009, pp. 1-188; Warren 2011, pp. 221-226) (see 
``Habitat Destruction and Modification by Fire,'' above). These impacts 
may negatively affect the 15 species in this final rule and the 10 
ecosystems that support them.
Climate Change, and Tropical Cyclone Frequency and Intensity
    A tropical cyclone is the generic term for a medium-scale to large-
scale, low-pressure storm system over tropical or subtropical waters 
with organized convection (i.e., thunderstorm activity) and definite 
cyclonic surface wind circulation (counterclockwise direction in the 
Northern Hemisphere) (Holland

[[Page 64668]]

1993, pp. 1-8). In the Northeast Pacific Ocean, east of the 
International Date Line, once a tropical cyclone reaches an intensity 
of winds of at least 74 mi per hour (33 m per second), it is considered 
a hurricane (Neumann 1993, pp. 1-2). Climate modeling has projected 
changes in tropical cyclone frequency and intensity due to global 
warming over the next 100 to 200 years (Vecchi and Soden 2007, pp. 
1,068-1,069, Figures 2 and 3; Emanuel et al. 2008, p. 360, Figure 8; Yu 
et al. 2010, p. 1,371, Figure 14). The frequency of hurricanes 
generated by tropical cyclones is projected to decrease in the central 
Pacific (e.g., the main and Northwestern Hawaiian Islands) while storm 
intensity (strength) is projected to increase by a few percent over 
this period (Vecchi and Soden 2007, pp. 1,068-1,069, Figures 2 and 3; 
Emanuel et al. 2008, p. 360, Figure 8; Yu et al. 2010, p. 1,371, Figure 
14). There are no climate model predictions for a change in the 
duration of Pacific tropical cyclone storm season (which generally runs 
from May through November).
    For more information on this topic, see ``Habitat Destruction and 
Modification by Hurricanes,'' above.
Climate Change, and Sea-Level Rise and Coastal Inundation
    On a global scale, sea level is rising as a result of thermal 
expansion of warming ocean water; the melting of ice sheets, glaciers, 
and ice caps; and the addition of water from terrestrial systems 
(Climate Institute 2011, in litt.). Sea level rose at an average rate 
of 0.1 in (1.8 mm) per year between 1961 and 2003 (IPCC 2007, pp. 30-
73), and the predicted increase by the end of this century, without 
accounting for ice sheet flow, ranges from 0.6 ft to 2.0 ft (0.18 m to 
0.6 m) (IPCC AR4 2007, p. 30). When ice sheet and glacial melt are 
incorporated into models the average estimated increase in sea level by 
the year 2100 is approximately 3 to 4 ft (0.9 to 1.2 m), with some 
estimates as high as 6.6 ft (2.0 m) to 7.8 ft (2.4 m) (Rahmstorf 2007, 
pp. 368-370; Pfeffer et al. 2008, p. 1,340; Fletcher 2009, p. 7; US-
GCRP 2009, p. 18). The species Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. 
hillebrandiana occurs within the coastal ecosystem. Although there is 
no specific data available on how sea-level rise and coastal inundation 
will impact this species, its occurrence in close proximity to the 
coastline places it at risk of the threat of sea-level rise and coastal 
inundation due to climate change. In addition, the anchialine pool 
ecosystem lies within the coastal ecosystem, and although there are no 
specific data available on how sea-level rise and coastal inundation 
will impact the anchialine pool shrimp, it is reasonable to conclude 
that potential impacts from sea-level rise and coastal inundation may 
include: (1) Complete inundation of pools and therefore elimination of 
entire anchialine pool habitats, particularly at Manuka; (2) an 
increase in the likelihood of exposure to predatory native marine fish 
not normally found in the anchialine pool ecosystem; and (3) powerful 
storm surf and rubble resulting from the predicted increase in storm 
intensity that can obliterate pools, create blockage and seal off the 
connection to the ocean, or interfere with the subterranean passages 
below.
    In summary, increased interannual variability of ambient 
temperature, precipitation, hurricanes, and sea-level rise and 
inundation would provide additional stresses on the 10 ecosystems and 
the 15 associated species in this final rule because they are highly 
vulnerable to disturbance and related invasion of nonnative species. 
The probability of a species going extinct as a result of such factors 
increases when its range is restricted, habitat decreases, and 
population numbers decline (IPCC 2007, pp. 8-11). In addition, these 15 
species are at a greater risk of extinction due to the loss of 
redundancy and resiliency created by their limited ranges, restricted 
habitat requirements, small population sizes, or low numbers of 
individuals. Therefore, we expect these 15 species to be particularly 
vulnerable to projected environmental impacts that may result from 
changes in climate and subsequent impacts to their habitats (e.g., 
Loope and Giambelluca 1998, pp. 504-505; Pounds et al. 1999, pp. 611-
612; Still et al. 1999, p. 610; Benning et al. 2002, pp. 14,246-14,248; 
Giambelluca and Luke 2007, pp. 13-18). Based on the above information, 
we conclude that changes in environmental conditions that result from 
climate change have the potential to negatively impact the 15 species 
in this final rule, and exacerbate other threats. We have concluded 
from the available data that this potential threat will likely increase 
in the near future.
Habitat Destruction and Modification by Sedimentation
    Anchialine pool habitats can gradually disappear when organic and 
mineral deposits from aquatic production and wind-blown materials 
accumulate through a process known as senescence (Maciolek and Brock 
1974, p. 3; Brock 2004, pp. 11, 35-36). Conditions promoting rapid 
senescence are known to include an increased amount of sediment 
deposition, good exposure to light, shallowness, and a weak connection 
with the water table, resulting in sediment and detritus accumulating 
within the pool instead of being flushed away with tidal exchanges and 
groundwater flow (Maciolek and Brock 1974, p. 3; Brock 2004, pp. 11, 
35-36).
    Based upon what we know about healthy anchialine pool systems 
(Brock 2004, pp. 11, 35-36), one or more factors, combined with 
increased sedimentation, are degrading the health of the Lua o Palahemo 
pool system, one of the two known locations of Vetericaris chaceorum. 
First, sedimentation in the water column is reducing the capacity of 
the pool to produce adequate cyanobacteria and algae to support some of 
the pool's herbivorous hypogeal species. A decreased food supply (i.e., 
a reduction in cyanobacteria and algae) will lead to a lower abundance 
of herbivorous hypogeal shrimp species as well as a lower abundance of 
the known carnivorous species, Metabetaeus lohena, and possibly V. 
chaceorum.
    Second, increased sedimentation in Lua o Palahemo is overloading 
the capacity of the pool and lava tube below to adequately flush water 
to maintain the water quality needed to support the micro-organisms 
that are fed upon by several of the pool's shrimp species (e.g., 
Calliasmata pholidota, Halocaridina palahemo, Halocaridina rubra, and 
Procaris hawaiiana) and their associated shrimp predators, Antecaridina 
lauensis and V. chaceorum (Brock 2004, pp. 10-11, 16).
    Third, increased sedimentation and the inability of the pool system 
to adequately flush its waters are either diminishing or preventing 
migration and recolonization of the pool by the hypogeal shrimp species 
from the surrounding porous watertable bedrock. In other words, this 
lack of porosity is affecting the movement of shrimp to and from food 
resources, and the accumulating sediment and detritus reduce 
productivity within the pool. This reduction in productivity reduces 
the carrying capacity of the habitat to support hypogeal shrimp like V. 
chaceorum, which is listed as endangered in this final rule (Brock 
2004, p. 10). Indeed, Brock (2004, p. 16) has established that pool 
productivity and shrimp presence are interdependent. In some cases, a 
pool that loses its shrimp populations due, for example, to the 
introduction of nonnative fish, more quickly loses its capacity to 
support shrimp in the future as a result of excessive buildup of algae 
and cyanobacterial mats that block and impede the pool's ability to 
flush and

[[Page 64669]]

maintain necessary water quality (Brock 2004, p. 16).
    During a dive survey in 1985, visibility within the lava tube 
portion of Lua o Palahemo was as great as 20 m (66 ft) (Kinsley and 
Williams 1986, pp. 417-437). During this dive survey, Kensley and 
Williams (1986, p. 418) estimated that other species of hypogeal shrimp 
co-occurring with V. chaceorum numbered in the tens of thousands for 
Halocaridina sp., in the thousands for Procaris hawaiiana, and less 
than 100 for Calliasmata sp. By 2010, visibility had been reduced to 8 
cm (3 in) within the pool itself, and underwater video taken during the 
survey shows continuous clouds of thick sediment and detritus within 
the water column below the pool (Wada 2010, in litt.). During this 
survey, only one P. hawaiiana individual was trapped, and seven others 
were observed in the video footage. No other species of shrimp, 
including V. chaceorum, were observed during the 2010 survey (Wada 
2010, in litt.). Kensley and Williams (1986, p. 426) reported fragments 
of crustaceans, including P. hawaiiana, in the gut contents of V. 
chaceorum. While P. hawaiiana occurs in other anchialine pool habitats 
on Hawaii Island and Maui, V. chaceorum is currently only known from 
Lua o Palahemo and four pools at Manuka. A reduction in the abundance 
of P. hawaiiana in one of the two known locations of V. chaceorum 
indicates a loss of food resources for V. chaceorum, although further 
research is needed to confirm this.
    During the 2010 survey, it was discovered that a possible partial 
collapse of the interior rock walls of Lua o Palahemo pool had 
occurred, and this collapse caused the difficulty experienced by the 
survey team to survey (via snorkeling) to any depth below the pool's 
surface (Wada 2010, in litt.). This collapse also contributed to the 
reduced flushing in the pool portion of Lua o Palahemo, leading to an 
accumulation of sediment and detritus in the pool. This accumulation of 
sediment is reducing both food productivity (i.e., reduce the abundance 
and availability of other species of hypogeal shrimp co-occurring with 
V. chaceorum) and the ability of V. chaceorum and other species of 
hypogeal shrimp co-occurring with V. chaceorum to move between the pool 
and the water table, thus leading to a reduction of their numbers 
within the pool. Although a recent 2012 survey conducted at Lua o 
Palahemo (Wada et al 2012, in litt.) reported that water visibility had 
improved since 2010 (Wada 2010, in litt.), particularly from 11 ft (3.5 
m) below the surface, neither V. chaceorum nor species of Halocaridina, 
which were reported in the tens of thousands in 1985, were observed 
(Wada et al. 2012, in litt.). The Service concludes that degradation of 
Lua o Palahemo by senescence from sedimentation is an ongoing threat to 
the continued existence of V. chaceorum by degrading the conditions of 
one of only two known locations of anchialine pools that support this 
species and by reducing available food resources (Brock 2004, pp. 10-
11, 16; Sakihara 2012, in litt.). Sedimentation is not reported to pose 
a threat to V. chaceorum in the pools at Manuka.
Conservation Efforts To Reduce Habitat Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of Habitat or Range
    There are no approved habitat conservation plans (HCPs), candidate 
conservation agreements (CCAs), or safe harbor agreements (SHAs) that 
specifically address these 15 species and threats from habitat 
destruction or modification. We acknowledge that in the State of Hawaii 
there are several voluntary conservation efforts that may be helping to 
ameliorate the threats to the 15 species listed as endangered in this 
final rule due to habitat destruction and modification by nonnative 
species, fire, natural disasters, and climate change, and the 
interaction of these threats. However, these efforts are overwhelmed by 
the number of threats, the extent of these threats across the 
landscape, and the lack of sufficient resources (e.g., funding) to 
control or eradicate them from all areas where these 15 species occur 
now or occurred historically. Some of the voluntary conservation 
efforts include the 11 island-based watershed partnerships, including 
the 3 partnerships on Hawaii Island (Three Mountian Alliance (TMA), 
Kohala Watershed Partnership (KWP), and the Mauna Kea Watershed 
Alliance (MKWA)). These partnerships are voluntary alliances of public 
and private landowners ``committed to the common value of protecting 
forested watersheds for water recharge, conservation, and other 
ecosystem services through collaborative management'' (http://hawp.org/partnerships). Most of the ongoing conservation management actions 
undertaken by the watershed partnerships address threats to upland 
habitat from nonnative species (e.g., feral ungulates, nonnative 
plants) and may include fencing, ungulate removal, and outplanting of 
native as well as rare, native species on lands within the partnership. 
Funding for the watershed partnerships is provided through a variety of 
State and Federal sources, public and private grants, and in-kind 
services provided by the partners or volunteers.
    Current watershed partnership projects on Hawaii Island that will 
benefit one or more of the 15 species listed as endangered in this 
final rule include both the building of new fenced exclosures and the 
maintenance of existing exclosures to exclude feral ungulates. The TMA 
is preparing to build a fenced exclosure of approximately 12,000 ac 
(4,856 ha) in the Kau FR bordering the Kahuku Unit of HVNP (Big Island 
Video News, May 23, 2012) in an area where several occurrences of 
Pittosporum hawaiiense are known (Pratt 2011d, in litt.). At least some 
individuals of P. hawaiiense will be protected from direct impacts from 
feral pigs, cattle, mouflon, and axis deer, although the exact number 
of P. hawaiiense individuals that will be within the exclosure is 
unknown. In addition, control of nonnative plants (e.g., Clidemia 
hirta, Hedychium gardnerianum, Psidium cattleianum, Rubus ellipticus, 
Setaria palmifolia, Cyathea cooperi, and Tibouchina spp.) will be 
conducted within the fenced exclosure (Cole 2013, in litt.). The TMA is 
also working with the Plant Extinction Prevention Program (see below) 
on nonnative ungulate and nonnative plant removal in a 270-ac (109-ha) 
exclosure in the Puu Makaala NAR where one occurrence of Cyanea 
tritomantha and the last individual of Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei 
are known (Ball 2013, pers. comm.). The KWP is constructing a 700-ac 
(283-ha) fenced exclosure in the Kohala Mountains in an area where 
individuals of Pritchardia lanigera are known. Completion of this fence 
is expected in 2016 (Ball 2013, pers. comm.; Purell 2013, in litt.). 
This exclosure will provide protection to individuals of P. lanigera 
from ungulates once the fence is completed and ungulates are removed 
within the fence. In addition, the KWP plans to control nonnative 
plants (i.e., Hedychium gardnerianum and Psidium cattleianum) within 
the exclosure (Purell 2013, in litt.).
    The State of Hawaii's Plant Extinction Prevention (PEP) Program 
supports conservation of plant species by securing seeds or cuttings 
(with permission from the State, Federal, or private landowners) from 
the rarest and most critically endangered native species for 
propagation and outplanting (http://pepphi.org). The PEP Program 
focusses primarily on species that have fewer than 50 plants remaining 
in the wild. Funding for this program is from the State of Hawaii, 
Federal agencies (e.g., Service), and public and private grants. The 
PEP Program collects,

[[Page 64670]]

propagates, and outplants rare plant species on State, Federal, and 
private lands (with permission) in areas where the species currently 
and historically occurred, and in species-appropriate habitat. The PEP 
Program collects, propagates, or outplants eight plant species that are 
listed as endangered in this final rule (Cyanea marksii, Cyrtandra 
wagneri, Phyllostegia floribunda, Pittosporum hawaiiense, Platydesma 
remyi, Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei, S. hawaiiensis, and Stenogyne 
cranwelliae) (PEPP 2012, pp. 1-6, 37-43). However, only 2 of these 8 
species (Cyrtandra wagneri and Platydesma remyi) were monitored and 
checked for possible collection material in 2012 (PEPP 2012, pp. 55, 
89). The PEP program is currently assisting TNC by maintaining sections 
of the Kona Hema Preserve (see below) (Yoshioka 2013, pers. comm.). 
Overall, the program has not yet been able to directly address broad-
scale habitat threats to plants by invasive species.
    Voluntary conservation actions undertaken by TNC on one (Kona Hema 
Preserve) of their three preserves on Hawaii Island provide a 
conservation benefit to individuals of the plants Phyllostegia 
floribunda and Pittosporum hawaiiense, which are listed as endangered 
in this final rule, that are in a fenced exclosure (the fence provides 
protection from mouflon, feral pigs, and cattle) (Ball 2013, pers. 
comm.). In addition, TNC is a member of two watershed partnerships, KWP 
and TMA.
    Voluntary conservation actions undertaken by several private 
landowners (Kamehameha Schools; Kaloko Properties Corporation, Stanford 
Carr Development (SCD)--Takeshi Sekiguchi Associates (TSA) Kaloko 
Makai, LLC, and Takeshi Sekiguchi Associates (TSA) Corporation; Lanihau 
Properties; Palamanui Global Holdings, LLC; and DHHL) are described in 
our October 17, 2012, proposed rule (77 FR 63928). These conservation 
actions provide a conservation benefit and ameliorate some of the 
threats from nonnative species and wildfire to the plant Bidens 
micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, which is listed as endangered in this final 
rule. In addition, at least 400 individuals of B. micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla have been propagated for the privately owned Koloko Makai 
Dryland Forest Preserve, and there are currently 300 surviving 
outplanted individuals (Hawaii Forest Institute 2013, in litt.). Other 
private landowners are engaged in, or initiating, voluntary 
conservation actions on their lands, including fencing to exclude 
ungulates, controlling nonnative plants, and propagation and 
outplanting of native plant species including B. micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla. These private landowners include the Queen Liliuokalani 
Trust and the Waikoloa Village Association in partnership with the 
Waikoloa Dry Forest Initiative (Waikoloa Village Outdoor Circle 2009; 
Queen Liliuokalani Trust 2013, pers. comm.). The conservation actions 
provided by these landowners ameliorate some of the threats from 
nonnative plant species, ungulates, and fire to B. micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla. In addition, with help from the Hawaii Forest Industry 
Association (HFIA), individuals of Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla 
have been propagated and outplanted within the privately owned 70-ac 
(28-ha) Kaupulehu Dry Forest Preserve, as well as at Koloko-Honokohau 
National Historical Park (Ball 2013, pers. comm.). According to HFIA 
(2009, p. 2) and DHHL (2013, in litt.), DHHL's Aupaka Preserve and 
Uhiuhi Preserve, two of four described in the Laiopua Plant Mitigation 
and Preserve Restoration Plan, will benefit several listed plant 
species as well as B. micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, which is listed as 
endangered in this final rule, by removing nonnative plant species, 
outplanting associated native plant species found in the lowland dry 
ecosystem, and maintaining a system of firebreaks (Leonard Bisel 
Associates, LLC, and Geometrician Associates 2008, pp. 36-46).
Summary of Habitat Destruction and Modification
    The threats to the habitats of each of the 15 species in this final 
rule are occurring throughout the entire range of each of the species, 
except where noted above. These threats include land conversion by 
agriculture and urbanization, nonnative ungulates and plants, fire, 
natural disasters, environmental changes resulting from climate change, 
sedimentation, and the interaction of these threats. While the 
conservation measures described above are a step in the right direction 
toward addressing the threats to the 15 species, due to the pervasive 
and expansive nature of the threats resulting in habitat degradation, 
these measures are insufficient across the landscape and in effort to 
eliminate these threats to any of the 15 species in this final rule.
    Development and urbanization of lowland dry habitat on Hawaii 
Island represents a serious and ongoing threat to Bidens micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla because of loss and degradation of habitat.
    The effects from ungulates are ongoing because ungulates currently 
occur in all of the 10 ecosystems that support the 15 species in this 
final rule. The threat posed by introduced ungulates to the species and 
their habitats in this final rule that occur in these 10 ecosystems 
(see Table 3) is serious, because they cause: (1) Trampling and grazing 
that directly impact the plant communities, which include all 13 of the 
plant species listed as endangered in this rule, and impact the host 
plants used by the picture-wing fly for shelter, foraging, and 
reproduction; (2) increased soil disturbance, leading to mechanical 
damage to individuals of the 13 plant species listed as endangered in 
this final rule, and also plants used by the picture-wing fly for 
shelter, foraging, and reproduction; (3) creation of open, disturbed 
areas conducive to weedy plant invasion and establishment of alien 
plants from dispersed fruits and seeds, which results over time in the 
conversion of a community dominated by native vegetation to one 
dominated by nonnative vegetation (leading to all of the negative 
impacts associated with nonnative plants, listed below); and (4) 
increased erosion, followed by sedimentation, affecting the anchialine 
pool habitat of V. chaceorum at Lua o Palahemo. These threats are 
expected to continue or increase without ungulate control or 
eradication.
    Nonnative plants represent a serious and ongoing threat to 14 of 
the 15 species listed as endangered in this final rule (all 13 plant 
species and the picture-wing fly (see Table 3)) through habitat 
destruction and modification, because they: (1) Adversely impact 
microhabitat by modifying the availability of light; (2) alter soil-
water regimes; (3) modify nutrient cycling processes; (4) alter fire 
characteristics of native plant habitat, leading to incursions of fire-
tolerant nonnative plant species into native habitat; (5) outcompete, 
and possibly directly inhibit the growth of, native plant species; and 
(6) create opportunities for subsequent establishment of nonnative 
vertebrates and invertebrates. Each of these threats can convert 
native-dominated plant communities to nonnative plant communities 
(Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 74; Vitousek 1992, pp. 33-35). This 
conversion has negative impacts on all 13 plant species listed as 
endangered here, as well as the native plant species upon which the 
picture-wing fly depends for essential life-history needs.
    The threat from fire to 4 of the 15 species in this final rule that 
depend on lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, and 
montane mesic ecosystems (the plants Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, 
Phyllostegia

[[Page 64671]]

floribunda, and Schiedea hawaiiensis, and the picture-wing fly; see 
Table 3) is serious and ongoing because fire damages and destroys 
native vegetation, including dormant seeds, seedlings, and juvenile and 
adult plants. Many nonnative, invasive plants, particularly fire-
tolerant grasses, outcompete native plants and inhibit their 
regeneration (D'Antonio and Vitousek 1992, pp. 70, 73-74; Tunison et 
al. 2002, p. 122). Successive fires that burn farther and farther into 
native habitat destroy native plants and remove habitat for native 
species by altering microclimatic conditions and creating conditions 
favorable to alien plants. The threat from fire is unpredictable but 
increasing in frequency in ecosystems that have been invaded by 
nonnative, fire-prone grasses and that are experiencing abnormally dry 
to severe drought conditions.
    Natural disasters, such as hurricanes, are a threat to native 
Hawaiian terrestrial habitat, including 9 of the 10 ecosystems (all 
except the anchialine pool ecosystem) addressed here, and the 13 plant 
species listed as endangered in this final rule, because they result in 
direct impacts to ecosystems and individual plants by opening the 
forest canopy, modifying available light, and creating disturbed areas 
that are conducive to invasion by nonnative pest plants (Asner and 
Goldstein 1997, p. 148; Harrington et al. 1997, pp. 346-347). In 
addition, hurricanes are a threat to the picture-wing fly species in 
this rule because strong winds and intense rainfall can kill individual 
host plants, and can dislodge individual flies and their larvae from 
their host plants and deposit them on the ground, where they may be 
crushed by falling debris or eaten by nonnative wasps and ants. The 
impacts of hurricanes and other stochastic natural events can be 
particularly devastating to 14 of the 15 species (all except the 
anchialine pool shrimp) because, as a result of other threats, they now 
persist in low numbers or occur in restricted ranges and are therefore 
less resilient to such disturbances, rendering them highly vulnerable. 
Furthermore, a particularly destructive hurricane holds the potential 
of driving a localized endemic species to extinction in a single event. 
Hurricanes pose an ongoing and ever-present threat because they are 
unpredictable and can happen at any time.
    Rockfalls, treefalls, landsides, heavy rain, inundation by high 
surf, and erosion are a threat to four of the species in this final 
rule (the plants Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, Cyanea 
marksii, Cyanea tritomantha, and Cyrtandra wagneri; see Table 3) by 
destabilizing substrates, damaging and destroying individual plants, 
and altering hydrological patterns, which result in habitat destruction 
or modification and changes to native plant and animal communities. 
Drought adversely impacts two plant species (Bidens micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla and Schiedea hawaiiensis) and the picture-wing fly 
(Drosophila digressa) by the loss or degradation of habitat due to 
death of individual native plants and host tree species, as well as an 
increase in forest and brush fires. These threats are serious and 
unpredictable, and have the potential to occur at any time.
    Changes in environmental conditions that may result from global 
climate change include increasing temperatures, decreasing 
precipitation, increasing storm intensities, and sea-level rise and 
coastal inundation. The consequent impacts on the 15 species listed as 
endangered in this final rule are related to changes in microclimatic 
conditions in their habitats. These changes have the potential to cause 
the loss of native species, including the 15 species being listed as 
endangered in this final rule, due to direct physiological stress, the 
loss or alteration of habitat, or changes in disturbance regimes (e.g., 
droughts, fire, storms, and hurricanes).
    Sedimentation of the Lua o Palahemo pool system is a threat to the 
anchialine pool shrimp (Vetericaris chaceorum), which is listed as 
endangered in this final rule. In particular, the accumulation of 
sediment and detritus reduces the abundance of food resources, such as 
Procaris hawaiiana and other co-occurring hypogeal shrimp, for V. 
chaceorum.

Factor B. Overutilization for Commercial, Recreational, Scientific or 
Educational Purposes

    The plant species Pritchardia lanigera is threatened by 
overcollection for commercial and recreational purposes (Hillebrand 
1888, pp. 21-27; Chapin et al. 2004, pp. 273, 278), as discussed below. 
We are aware that some species of Hawaiian anchialine pool shrimp are 
sold and purchased on the Internet. However, we do not believe that the 
anchialine pool shrimp listed as endangered in this final rule is 
threatened by overcollection for commercial or recreational purposes 
for the following reasons: (1) The remoteness of Lua o Palahemo, one of 
two known locations of Vetericaris chaceorum, and the difficulty of 
accessing this species within the deeper lava tube portions of the 
anchialine pool; and (2) although a second occurrence has now been 
confirmed at Manuka throughout the epigeal (open surface) sections of 
four pools, V. chaceorum is still considerably less common and much 
more elusive than Halocaridina rubra and the other anchialine pool 
shrimp species found in these four pools. In addition, there are 
prohibitions against collecting from the pools in the natural area 
reserve, although the State does not actively monitor the site (Hadway 
2013, pers. comm.). We are not aware of any threats to the remaining 12 
plant species or the picture-wing fly listed as endangered in this 
final rule that would be attributed to overutilization for commercial, 
recreational, scientific or educational purposes.

Pritchardia lanigera

    The genus Pritchardia has 28 known species, 14 of which are endemic 
to the Hawaiian Islands, and its range is restricted to the Pacific 
archipelagos of Hawaii, Fiji, the Cook Islands, Tonga, and Tuamotus 
(Chapin et al. 2004, p. 273). Pritchardia palms have been valued as 
collectibles for centuries (Hillebrand 1888, pp. 21-27; Chapin et al. 
2004, pp. 273, 278). In 1888, botanist Wilhelm Hillebrand noted that, 
``. . . one species of Pritchardia in Nuuanu, . . . was completely 
exterminated when natives found that the trees were saleable to 
amateurs of gardening in Honolulu.'' Pritchardia has become one of the 
most widely cultivated ornamental palm genera in the world (Maunder et 
al. 2001 in Chapin et al. 2004, p. 278). There is an international 
trade in Pritchardia seeds and seedlings that has created a market in 
which individual Pritchardia seeds sell for 5 to 35 dollars each 
(Chapin et al. 2004, p. 278; Clark 2010, in litt.; http://rarepalmseeds.com). Most seeds sold are cultivated; however, wild 
collection of some ``highly-threatened'' species does occur (Chapin et 
al. 2004, p. 278). There are over a dozen Internet Web sites that offer 
Hawaiian Pritchardia plants and seeds for sale, including Pritchardia 
lanigera (e.g., http://www.eBay.com). Based on the history of 
collection of endemic Hawaiian Pritchardia plants and seeds, the market 
for Hawaiian Pritchardia plants and seeds, and the vulnerability of the 
small populations of Pritchardia lanigera to the negative impacts of 
any collection, we consider overcollection of Pritchardia lanigera to 
pose a serious and ongoing threat, because it can occur at any time, 
although its occurrence is not predictable.
Anchialine Pool Shrimp
    While we are aware of two collections of the anchialine pool shrimp

[[Page 64672]]

Vetericaris chaceorum for scientific and educational purposes (Kensley 
and Williams, 1986, pp. 419-429; Sakihara 2013, in litt.), there is no 
information available that indicates this species has ever been 
collected for commercial or recreational purposes. Other Hawaiian 
anchialine pool shrimp (e.g., opaeula (Halocaridina rubra)) and the 
candidate species Metabetaeus lohena (NCN) are collected for the 
aquarium market (e.g., http://Fuku-Bonsai.com; http://ecosaqua.com; 
http://www.eBay.com; http://www.seahorse.com), including self-contained 
aquariums similar to those marketed by Ecosphere Associates, Inc. 
(Ecosphere Associates 2011, p. 1). Two of these companies are located 
in Hawaii (FukuBonsai and Stockly's Aquariums of Hawaii). Although 
other species are collected, the Service lacks sufficient information 
to suggest that collection is or is not a threat to V. chaceorum.
Conservation Efforts To Reduce Overutilization for Commercial, 
Recreational, Scientific or Educational Purposes
    We are unaware of voluntary conservation efforts to reduce 
overcollection of Hawaiian Prichardia species, including P. lanigera, 
which is listed as endangered in this final rule. There are no approved 
HCPs, SHAs, CCAs, memoranda of understanding (MOUs), or other voluntary 
actions that specifically address P. lanigera and the threat from 
overcollection.
Summary of Overutilization for Commercial, Recreational, Scientific, or 
Educational Purposes
    We have no evidence to suggest that overutilization for commercial, 
recreational, scientific, or educational purposes poses a threat to 12 
of the 13 plant species, the picture-wing fly, or the anchialine pool 
shrimp in this final rule. The plant species Pritchardia lanigera is 
vulnerable to the impacts of overutilization due to collection for 
trade or market. Based on the history of collection of endemic Hawaiian 
Pritchardia spp., the market for Hawaiian Pritchardia trees and seeds, 
and the inherent vulnerability of the small populations of Pritcharidia 
lanigera to the removal of individuals (seeds), we consider collection 
to pose a serious and ongoing threat to this species.

Factor C. Disease or Predation

Disease
    We are not aware of any threats to the 13 plant species, anchialine 
pool shrimp, or picture-wing fly listed as endangered in this final 
rule that are attributable to disease.
Predation and Herbivory
    Hawaii's plants and animals evolved in nearly complete isolation 
from continental influences. Successful colonization of these remote 
volcanic islands was infrequent, and many organisms never succeeded in 
establishing populations. As an example, Hawaii lacks any native ants 
or conifers, has very few families of birds, and has only a single 
native land mammal--a bat (Loope 1998, p. 748). In the absence of any 
grazing or browsing mammals, plants that became established did not 
need mechanical or chemical defenses against mammalian herbivory such 
as thorns, prickles, and production of toxins. As the evolutionary 
pressure to either produce or maintain such defenses was lacking, 
Hawaiian plants either lost or never developed these adaptations 
(Carlquist 1980, p. 173). Likewise, native Hawaiian birds and insects 
experienced no evolutionary pressure to develop anti-predator 
mechanisms against mammals or invertebrates that were not historically 
present on the island. The native flora and fauna of the islands are 
thus particularly vulnerable to the impacts of introduced nonnative 
species, as discussed below.
Introduced Ungulates
    In addition to the habitat impacts discussed above (see ``Habitat 
Destruction and Modification by Introduced Ungulates'' under Factor A. 
The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of 
Habitat or Range), introduced ungulates and their resulting impacts are 
a threat to the 13 plant species in this final rule by grazing and 
browsing individual plants (this information is also presented in Table 
3): Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana (pigs and goats), B. 
micrantha ssp. ctenophylla (pigs and goats), Cyanea marksii (pigs, 
cattle, and mouflon), Cyanea tritomantha (pigs and cattle), Cyrtandra 
nanawaleensis (pigs), Cyrtandra wagneri (pigs), Phyllostegia floribunda 
(pigs), Pittosporum hawaiiense (pigs, cattle, and mouflon), Platydesma 
remyi (pigs), Pritchardia lanigera (pigs, goats, and mouflon), Schiedea 
diffusa ssp. macraei (pigs and cattle), Schiedea hawaiiensis (pigs, 
goats, sheep, and mouflon), and Stenogyne cranwelliae (pigs). In 
addition, introduced ungulates are a threat to the picture-wing fly in 
this final rule by grazing and browsing individuals of its host plants, 
Charpentiera spp. and Pisonia spp. (pigs, goats, cattle, and mouflon).
    We have direct evidence of ungulate damage to the 13 plant species 
listed as endangered species in this final rule, as well as to the two 
host plants of the picture-wing fly listed as an endangered species in 
this final rule. Magnacca et al. (2008, p. 32) and others (Maui Forest 
Bird Recovery Project 2011, in litt.) found that native plant species 
such as the Hawaiian lobelioids (e.g., Cyanea spp.) and plants in the 
African violet family (e.g., Cyrtandra spp.) are particularly 
vulnerable to pig disturbance. In a study conducted by Diong (1982, p. 
160) on Maui, feral pigs were observed browsing on young shoots, 
leaves, and fronds of a wide variety of plants, of which over 75 
percent were endemic species. A stomach content analysis in this study 
showed that 60 percent of the pigs' food source consisted of the 
endemic Cibotium (hapuu, tree fern). Pigs were observed to fell plants 
and remove the bark from native plant species within the genera 
Cibotium, Clermontia, Coprosma, Hedyotis, Psychotria, and Scaevola, 
resulting in larger trees being killed over a few months of repeated 
feeding (Diong 1982, p. 144). Beach (1997, pp. 3-4) found that feral 
pigs in Texas spread disease and parasites, and their rooting and 
wallowing behavior led to spoilage of watering holes and loss of soil 
through leaching and erosion. Rooting activities also decreased the 
survivability of some plant species through disruption at root level of 
mature plants and seedlings (Beach 1997, pp. 3-4; Anderson et al. 2007, 
pp. 2-3). In Hawaii, pigs dig up forest ground cover consisting of 
delicate and rare species of orchids, ferns, mints, lobeliads, and 
other taxa, including roots, tubers and rhizomes (Stone and Anderson 
1988, p. 137).
    In addition, there are direct observations of pig herbivory, on 
either the fresh seedlings, fruits, seeds, or leaves, on each of the 13 
plant species in this final rule, including Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. 
hillebrandiana (Bio 2011, pers. comm.), B. micrantha ssp. ctenophylla 
(Bio 2011, pers. comm.), Cyanea marksii (PEPP 2010, p. 52; Bio 2011, 
pers. comm.), Cyanea tritomantha (HBMP 2010f; PEPP 2010, p. 60), 
Cyrtandra nanawaleensis (Bio 2011, pers. comm.), Cyrtandra wagneri 
(Lorence and Perlman 2007, p. 359; PEPP 2010, p. 63), Phyllostegia 
floribunda (Perlman and Wood 1993--Hawaii Plant Conservation Maps 
database; Perry 2006, in litt.; Pratt 2007b, in litt.; USFWS 2010, p. 
4-66), Pittosporum hawaiiense (Bio 2011, pers. comm.), Platydesma remyi 
(PEPP 2008, p. 107), Pritchardia lanigera (Wood

[[Page 64673]]

1995, in litt.; HBMP 2010c; Crysdale 2013, pers. comm.), Schiedea 
diffusa ssp. macraei (Wagner et al. 2005d, p. 32), Schiedea hawaiiensis 
(Mitchell et al. 2005a; Wagner et al. 2005d, p. 32; Bio 2011, pers. 
comm.), and Stenogyne cranwelliae (HBMP 2010k). According to Magnacca 
et al. (2008, p. 32; 2013, in litt.) several of the host plants of 
Hawaiian picture-wing flies, including Charpentiera spp. and Pisonia 
spp., the two host plants that support the picture-wing fly in this 
rule, are susceptible to damage from feral ungulates such as pigs. As 
pigs occur in 9 of the 10 ecosystems (coastal, lowland dry, lowland 
mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, montane mesic, montane wet, dry cliff, 
and wet cliff) on Hawaii Island, the results of the studies described 
above suggest that pigs can also alter these ecosystems and directly 
damage or destroy the 13 plant species listed as endangered species in 
this final rule, and the two plants that support the picture-wing fly 
that is being listed as endangered in this final rule (see above and 
Table 3).
    Feral goats thrive on a variety of food plants, and are 
instrumental in the decline of native vegetation in many areas (Cuddihy 
and Stone 1990, p. 64). Feral goats trample roots and seedlings, cause 
erosion, and promote the invasion of alien plants. They are able to 
forage in extremely rugged terrain and have a high reproductive 
capacity (Clarke and Cuddihy 1980, p. C-20; van Riper and van Riper 
1982, pp. 34-35; Tomich 1986, pp. 153-156; Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 
64). Goats were observed to browse on native plant species in the 
following genera: Argyroxiphium, Canavalia, Plantago, Schiedea, and 
Stenogyne (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 64). A study on the island of 
Hawaii demonstrated that Acacia koa seedlings are unable to survive due 
to browsing and grazing by goats (Spatz and Mueller-Dombois 1973, p. 
874). If goats are maintained at constantly high numbers, mature A. koa 
trees will eventually die, and with them the root systems that support 
suckers and vegetative reproduction. One study demonstrated a positive 
height-growth response of A. koa suckers to the 3-year exclusion of 
goats (1968-1971) inside a fenced area, whereas suckers were similarly 
abundant but very small outside of the fenced area (Spatz and Mueller-
Dombois 1973, p. 873). Another study at Puuwaawaa demonstrated that 
prior to management actions in 1985, regeneration of endemic shrubs and 
trees in the goat-grazed area was almost totally lacking, contributing 
to the invasion of the forest understory by exotic grasses and weeds. 
After the removal of grazing animals in 1985, A. koa and Metrosideros 
spp. seedlings were observed germinating by the thousands (HDOFAW 2002, 
p. 52). Based on a comparison of fenced and unfenced areas, it is clear 
that goats can devastate native ecosystems (Loope et al. 1988, p. 277).
    Goats seek out seedlings and juveniles of Bidens spp. (Bio 2011, 
pers. comm.), and are known to indiscriminately graze on and eat the 
seeds of native Hawaiian Pritchardia species (Chapin et al. 2004, p. 
274; Chapin et al. 2007, p. 20). The two known occurrences of the plant 
Pritchardia lanigera are found in an unfenced area of the Kohala 
Mountains, where they are impacted by browsing and grazing by goats and 
other ungulates (Warshauer et al. 2009, pp. 10, 24; Laws et al. 2010, 
in litt.). Schiedea spp. are favored by grazing goats, and goat 
browsing adversely impacts the only known population of the plant 
species Schiedea hawaiiensis (Wagner et al. 2005d, p. 32; Chynoweth et 
al. 2011, in litt.). In addition, there are direct observations of goat 
herbivory, on either the fresh seedlings, fruit, seeds, or leaves, of 
four of the plant species in this final rule, including Bidens 
hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana (Bio 2011, pers. comm.), B. 
micrantha ssp. ctenophylla (Bio 2011, pers. comm.; Knoche 2011, in 
litt.), Pritchardia lanigera (Wood 1995, in litt.; Chapin et al. 2004, 
p. 274), and Schiedea hawaiiensis (Mitchell et al. 2005a). According to 
Magnacca et al. (2008, p. 32) several of the host plants of Hawaiian 
picture-wing flies, including the host plants of the picture-wing fly 
listed as endangered in this rule (Charpentiera spp. and Pisonia spp.), 
are susceptible to damage from feral ungulates such as goats. As goats 
occur in nine of the ecosystems (coastal, lowland dry, lowland mesic, 
lowland wet, montane dry, montane mesic, montane wet, dry cliff, and 
wet cliff) on Hawaii Island, the results of the studies described above 
suggest that goats can also alter these ecosystems and directly damage 
or destroy four of the plant species being listed as endangered in this 
final rule (Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, B. hillebrandiana ssp. 
hillebrandiana, Pritchardia lanigera, and Schiedea hawaiiensis), and 
the two host plants that support the picture-wing fly being listed as 
an endangered species in this final rule (see above and Table 3).
    Four of the plant species listed as endangered in this final rule 
(Cyanea marksii, C. tritomantha, Pittosporum hawaiiense, and Schiedea 
diffusa ssp. macraei), and the two host plants that support the 
picture-wing fly in this rule (Charpentiera spp. and Pisonia spp.), are 
impacted by browsing and grazing by feral cattle. Cattle, either feral 
or domestic, are considered one of the most significant factors in the 
destruction of Hawaiian forests (Baldwin and Fagerlund 1943, pp. 118-
122). Currently, feral cattle are found only on Maui and Hawaii, 
typically in accessible forests and certain coastal and lowland leeward 
habitats (Tomich 1986, pp. 140-144).
    In HVNP, Cuddihy reported that there were twice as many native 
plant species as nonnatives found in areas that had been fenced to 
exclude feral cattle, whereas on the adjacent, nonfenced cattle ranch, 
there were twice as many nonnative plant species as natives (Cuddihy 
1984, pp. 16, 34). Skolmen and Fujii (1980, pp. 301-310) found that 
Acacia koa seedlings were able to reestablish in a moist A. koa--
Metrosideros polymorpha forest on Hawaii Island after the area was 
fenced to exclude feral cattle (Skolmen and Fujii 1980, pp. 301-310). 
Cattle eat native vegetation, trample roots and seedlings, cause 
erosion, create disturbed areas conducive to invasion by nonnative 
plants, and spread seeds of nonnative plants in their feces and on 
their bodies. Cattle have been observed accessing native plants in 
Hakalau NWR by breaking down ungulate exclosure fences (Tummons 2011, 
p. 4). In addition, there are direct observations of cattle herbivory 
on three of the plant species in this rule, including Cyanea marksii 
(PEPP 2010, p. 52), C. tritomantha (PEPP 2010, p. 60), and Pittosporum 
hawaiiense (Bio 2011, pers. comm.). In addition, although we have no 
direct observations, we also consider the plant Schiedea diffusa ssp. 
macraei to be susceptible to herbivory by cattle because cattle are 
reported to favor plants in the genus Schiedea (Wagner et al. 2005d, 
pp. 31-32) and feral cattle still occur in the Kohala Mountains, the 
location of the only known individual of this species. Between 1987 and 
1994, populations of Schiedea salicaria on West Maui were grazed so 
extensively by cattle, all of the individuals of this species in 
accessible areas disappeared by 1994 (Wagner et al. 2005d, p. 32). 
Cattle are also known to browse Charpentiera spp. and Pisonia spp., the 
two host plants that support the picture-wing fly in this final rule 
(Magnacca et al. 2008, p. 32; Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.). As feral 
cattle occur in five of the described ecosystems (anchialine pool, 
lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane mesic, and montane wet) on Hawaii 
Island, the results of the studies

[[Page 64674]]

described above suggest that feral cattle can also alter these 
ecosystems and directly damage or destroy four of the plant species 
listed as endangered species in this final rule (Cyanea marksii, C. 
tritomantha, Pittosporum hawaiiense, and Schiedea diffusa ssp. 
macraei), and the two host plants that support the picture-wing fly 
listed as an endangered species in this rule (Charpentiera spp. and 
Pisonia spp.) (Table 3).
    Feral sheep browse and trample native vegetation, and have 
decimated large areas of native forest and shrubland (Tomich 1986, pp. 
156-163; Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 65-66). Large areas of Hawaii 
Island have been devastated by sheep. For example, sheep browsing 
reduced seedling establishment of Sophora chrysophylla (mamane) so 
severely that it resulted in a reduction of the tree line elevation on 
Mauna Kea (Warner 1960 in Juvik and Juvik 1984, pp. 191-202). Currently 
there is a large sheep-mouflon sheep hybrid population (see ``Habitat 
Destruction and Modification by Introduced Ungulates'' under Factor A. 
The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of 
Habitat or Range, above) on Mauna Kea that extends into the saddle and 
northern part of Mauna Loa, and there are reports that these animals 
are destroying endangered plants (Hess 2008, p. 1). There are direct 
observations of feral sheep herbivory on individuals of the only known 
occurrence of the plant species Schiedea hawaiiensis at PTA (Mitchell 
et al. 2005a; U.S. Army Garrison 2006, p. 34). As feral sheep occur in 
one of the described ecosystems (montane dry) on Hawaii Island, the 
results of the studies described above suggest that sheep can also 
alter this ecosystem and directly damage or destroy individuals of 
Schiediea hawaiiensis (Table 3).
    Mouflon sheep graze native vegetation, trample undergrowth, spread 
weeds, and cause erosion. On the island of Hawaii, mouflon sheep 
browsing led to the decline in the largest population of the endangered 
Argyroxiphium kauense (kau silversword, Mauna Loa silversword, or 
ahinahina) located on the former Kahuku Ranch, reducing it from a 
``magnificent population of several thousand'' (Degener et al. 1976, 
pp. 173-174) to fewer than 2,000 individuals (unpublished data in 
Powell 1992, in litt., p. 312) over a period of 10 years (1974-1984). 
The native tree Sophora chrysophylla is also a preferred browse species 
for mouflon. According to Scowcroft and Sakai (1983, p. 495), mouflon 
eat the shoots, leaves, flowers, and bark of this species. Bark 
stripping on the thin bark of a young tree is potentially lethal. 
Mouflon are also reported to strip bark from Acacia koa trees (Hess 
2008, p. 3) and to seek out the threatened plant Silene hawaiiensis 
(Benitez et al. 2008, p. 57). In the Kahuku section of HVNP, mouflon 
jumped the park boundary fence and reduced one population of S. 
hawaiiensis to half its original size over a 3-year period (Belfield 
and Pratt 2002, p. 8). Other native species browsed by mouflon include 
Geranium cuneatum ssp. cuneatum (hinahina, silver geranium), G. 
cuneatum ssp. hypoleucum (hinahina, silver geranium), and Sanicula 
sandwicensis (NCN) (Benitez et al. 2008, pp. 59, 61). On Lanai, mouflon 
were once cited as one of the greatest threats to the endangered 
Gardenia brighamii (Mehrhoff 1993, p. 11), although fencing has now 
proven to be an effective mechanism against mouflon herbivory on this 
plant (Mehrhoff 1993, pp. 22-23). Due to their high agility and 
reproductive rates, mouflon sheep have the potential to occupy most 
ecosystems found on Hawaii Island, from sea-level to very high 
elevations (Hess 2010, pers. comm.; Ikagawa 2011, in litt.). Further, 
Ovis spp. are known throughout the world for chewing vegetation right 
down to the soil (Ikagawa 2011, in litt.).
    Recent research by Ikagawa (2011, in litt.) suggests that the plant 
species Pritchardia lanigera occurs within the observed range of 
mouflon, and is potentially impacted by mouflon browsing. In addition, 
there are direct observations or reports that mouflon sheep browsing 
and grazing significantly impact the plant species Cyanea marksii, 
Pittosporum hawaiiense, and Schiedea hawaiiensis (Bio 2011, pers. 
comm.; Pratt 2011e, in litt.), which are listed as endangered in this 
final rule. Further, Charpentiera spp., one of the two host plants that 
support the picture-wing fly in this rule, appears to be decreasing 
throughout its range due to impacts from mouflon browsing (Science 
Panel 2005, pp. 1-23; Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.). As mouflon occur in 
five of the described ecosystems (lowland wet, lowland mesic, montane 
dry, montane mesic, and montane wet) on Hawaii Island, the results of 
the studies described above suggest that mouflon sheep can also alter 
these ecosystems and directly damage or destroy four plants listed as 
endangered species in this final rule (Cyanea marksii, Pittosporum 
hawaiiense, Pritchardia lanigera, and Schiedea hawaiiensis), and one of 
the two host plants (see above) that support the picture-wing fly 
listed as an endangered species in this final rule (Table 3).
    The recent introduction of axis deer to Hawaii Island raises a 
significant concern due to the reported damage axis deer cause on the 
island of Maui (see Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, 
Modification, or Curtailment of Habitat or Range, above). Most of the 
available information on axis deer in the Hawaiian Islands concerns 
observations and reports from the island of Maui. On Maui, axis deer 
were introduced by the State as a game animal, but their numbers have 
steadily increased, especially in recent years on Haleakala (Luna 2003, 
p. 44). During the 4-year El Ni[ntilde]o drought from 1998 through 
2001, Maui experienced an 80 to 90 percent decline in shrub and vine 
species caused by deer browsing and girdling of young saplings. High 
mortality of rare and native plant species was observed (Medeiros 2010, 
pers. comm.). Axis deer consume progressively less palatable plants 
until no edible vegetation is left (Hess 2008, p. 3). Axis deer are 
highly adaptable to changing conditions and are characterized as 
``plastic'' (meaning flexible in their behavior) by Ables (1977, cited 
in Anderson 1999, p. 5). They exhibit a high degree of opportunism 
regarding their choice of forage (Dinerstein 1987, cited in Anderson 
1999, p. 5) and can be found in all but the highest elevation 
ecosystems (subalpine and alpine) and montane bogs, according to 
Medeiros (2010, pers. comm.).
    Axis deer on Maui follow a cycle of grazing and browsing in open 
lowland grasslands during the rainy season (November-March) and then 
migrate to the lava flows of montane mesic forests during the dry 
summer months to graze and browse native plants (Medeiros 2010, pers. 
comm.). Axis deer are known to favor the native plants Abutilon 
menziesii (an endangered species), Erythrina sandwicensis (wiliwili), 
and Sida fallax (ilima) (Medeiros 2010, pers. comm.). During the driest 
months of summer (July and August), axis deer can even be found along 
Maui's coastal roads as they search for food. Hunting pressure also 
appears to drive the deer into native forests, particularly the lower 
rainforests up to 4,000 to 5,000 ft (1,220 and 1,525 m) in elevation 
(Medeiros 2010, pers. comm.), and according to Kessler and Hess (2010, 
pers. comm.), axis deer can be found up to 9,000 ft (2,743 m) 
elevation. On Lanai, grazing by axis deer has been reported as a major 
threat to the endangered Gardenia brighamii (nau) (Mehrhoff 1993, p. 
11). Swedberg and Walker (1978, cited in Anderson

[[Page 64675]]

2003, pp. 124-125) reported that in the upper forests of Lanai, the 
native plants Osteomeles anthyllidifolia (ulei) and Leptecophylla 
tameiameiae (pukiawe) comprised more than 30 percent of axis deer rumen 
volume. On Molokai browsing by axis deer has been reported on Erythrina 
sandwicensis and Nototrichium sandwicense (kului) (Medeiros et al. 
1996, pp. 11, 19). Other native plant species consumed by axis deer 
include Achyranthes splendens (NCN), Bidens campylotheca ssp. pentamera 
(kookoolau) and B. campylotheca ssp. waihoiensis (kookoolau), 
Chamaesyce celastroides var. lorifolia (akoko), Diospyros sandwicensis 
(lama), Geranium multiflorum (nohoanu; an endangered species), 
Lipochaeta rockii var. dissecta (nehe), Osmanthus sandwicensis 
(ulupua), Panicum torridum (kakonakona), and Santalum ellipticum (laau 
ala) (Anderson 2002, poster; Perlman 2009, in litt., pp. 4-5). As 
demonstrated on the Islands of Lanai, Maui, and Molokai, axis deer will 
spread into nine of the described ecosystems (coastal, lowland dry, 
lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, montane mesic, montane wet, 
dry cliff, and wet cliff) on Hawaii Island if not controlled. The newly 
established axis deer partnership (see Factor A. The Present or 
Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of Habitat or 
Range, above) is currently implementing an axis deer response and 
removal plan, and just recently reported their first confirmed removal 
on April 11, 2012 (Osher 2012, in litt.). In addition, there is a 
proposed revision to the State of Hawaii's HRS 91 (see Factor A. The 
Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of 
Habitat or Range, above, and Factor D. The Inadequacy of Existing 
Regulatory Mechanisms, below) that would address the gap in the current 
emergency rules authority and expand the ability of State agencies to 
adopt emergency rules to include situations that impose imminent 
threats to natural resources (e.g., axis deer on Hawaii Island). The 
results from the studies above, combined with direct observations from 
field biologists, suggest that grazing and browsing by axis deer can 
impose negative impacts to the nine ecosystems above and their 
associated native plants, including the 13 plant species listed as 
endangered species in this final rule, and the two host plants that 
support the picture-wing fly (see above) listed as an endangered 
species in this final rule, should this nonnative ungulate increase in 
number and range on Hawaii Island.
Other Introduced Vertebrates

Rats

    There are three species of introduced rats in the Hawaiian Islands: 
Polynesian rat (Rattus exulans), black rat (R. rattus), and Norway rat 
(R. norvegicus). The Polynesian rat and the black rat are primarily 
found in the wild, in dry to wet habitats, while the Norway rat is 
typically found in manmade habitats, such as urban areas or 
agricultural fields (Tomich 1986, p. 41). The black rat is widely 
distributed among the main Hawaiian Islands and can be found in a broad 
range of ecosystems up to 9,744 ft (2,970 m), but it is most common at 
low- to mid-elevations (Tomich 1986, pp. 38-40). While Sugihara (1997, 
p. 194) found both the black and Polynesian rats up to 6,972 ft (2,125 
m) elevation on Maui, the Norway rat was not seen at the higher 
elevations in his study. Rats occur in nine of the described ecosystems 
(coastal, lowland dry, lowland mesic, lowland wet, montane dry, montane 
mesic, montane wet, dry cliff, and wet cliff), and predation by rats 
adversely impacts 11 of the 13 plant species listed as endangered in 
this final rule (rats are not a reported threat to the picture-wing fly 
or anchialine pool shrimp listed as endangered in this rule) (see Table 
3).
    Rats impact native plants by eating fleshy fruits, seeds, flowers, 
stems, leaves, roots, and other plant parts (Atkinson and Atkinson 
2000, p. 23), and can seriously affect regeneration. Research on rats 
in forests in New Zealand has also demonstrated that, over time, 
differential regeneration as a consequence of rat predation may alter 
the species composition of forested areas (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, pp. 
68-69). Rats have caused declines or even the total elimination of 
island plant species (Campbell and Atkinson 1999, cited in Atkinson and 
Atkinson 2000, p. 24). In the Hawaiian Islands, rats may consume as 
much as 90 percent of the seeds produced by some trees, or in some 
cases prevent the regeneration of forest species completely (Cuddihy 
and Stone 1990, pp. 68-69). All three species of rat (black, Norway, 
and Polynesian) have been reported to be a serious threat to many 
endangered or threatened Hawaiian plants (Stone 1985, p. 264; Cuddihy 
and Stone 1990, pp. 67-69). Plants with fleshy fruits are particularly 
susceptible to rat predation, including some of the species listed as 
endangered in this rule. For example, the fruits of plants in the 
bellflower family (e.g., Cyanea spp.) appear to be a target of rat 
predation (Cuddihy and Stone 1990, pp. 67-69). In addition to both 
species of Cyanea (Cyanea marksii and Cyanea tritomantha), nine other 
species of plants in this final rule are adversely impacted by rat 
predation: Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, B. micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla (Bio 2011, pers. comm.), Cyrtandra nanawaleensis, Cyrtandra 
wagneri (Lorence and Perlman 2007, pp. 357-361; Bio 2011, pers. comm.), 
Pittosporum hawaiiense, Pritchardia lanigera, Schiedea diffusa ssp. 
macraei, Schiedea hawaiiensis, and Stenogyne cranwelliae (Cuddihy and 
Stone 1990, pp. 67-69; Gon III and Tierney 1996, in litt.; Bio 2008, in 
litt.; Pratt 2008b, in litt.; Bio 2010, pers. comm.; HBMP 2010c; HBMP 
2010f; HBMP 2010j; HBMP 2010k; PEPP 2010, pp. 101, 113; Pratt 2011f, in 
litt.; Crysdale 2013, pers. comm.).
Nonnative Fish
    In Hawaii, the introduction of nonnative fish, including bait-fish, 
into anchialine pools has been a major contributor to the decline of 
native shrimp (TNC 1987 cited in Chan 1995, p. 1; Chan 1995, pp. 1, 8, 
17-18; Brock and Kam 1997, p. 50; Brock 2004, p. 13-17; Kinzie 2012, in 
litt.). Predation by, and competition with, introduced nonnative fish 
is considered the greatest threat to native shrimp within anchialine 
pool ecosystems (Bailey-Brock and Brock 1993, p. 354; Brock 2004, pp. 
13-17). These impacts are discussed further under Factor E. Other 
Natural or Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued Existence, below.
Invertebrates
Nonnative Slugs
    Predation by nonnative slugs adversely impacts 5 of the 13 plant 
species (Cyanea marksii, Cyanea tritomantha, Cyrtandra nanawaleensis, 
Cyrtandra wagneri, and Stenogyne cranwelliae; see Table 3) in this 
final rule through mechanical damage, destruction of plant parts, and 
mortality (U.S. Army Garrison 2006, p. 3-51; Joe 2006, p. 10; Lorence 
and Perlman 2007, p. 359; Bio 2008, in litt.; Perlman and Bio 2008, in 
litt.; HBMP 2010k). On Oahu, slugs have been reported to destroy the 
endangered plants Cyanea calycina and Cyrtandra kaulantha in the wild, 
and have been observed eating leaves and fruit of wild and cultivated 
individuals of Cyanea (Mehrhoff 1995, in litt.; Pratt and Abbott 1997, 
p. 13; U.S. Army Garrison 2006, pp. 3-34, 3-51). In addition, slugs 
have damaged individuals of other Cyanea and Cyrtandra species in the 
wild (Wood et al. 2001, p. 3; Sailer and Keir 2002, in litt., p. 3; 
PEPP 2007, p. 38; PEPP 2008, pp. 23, 49, 52-53, 57).

[[Page 64676]]

    Little is known about predation of certain rare plants by slugs; 
however, information in the U.S. Army's 2005 ``Status Report for the 
Makua Implementation Plan'' indicates that slugs can be a threat to all 
species of Cyanea (U.S. Army Garrison 2006, p. 3-51). Research 
investigating slug herbivory and control methods shows that slug 
impacts on seedlings of Cyanea spp. results in up to 80 percent 
seedling mortality (U.S. Army Garrison 2006, p. 3-51). Slug damage has 
also been reported on other Hawaiian plants including Argyroxiphium 
grayanum (greensword), Alsinidendron sp., Hibiscus sp., the endangered 
plant Schiedea kaalae (maolioli), the endangered plant Solanum 
sandwicense (popolo aiakeakua), and Urera sp. (Gagne 1983, pp. 190-191; 
Sailer 2002 cited in Joe 2006, pp. 28-34).
    Joe and Daehler (2008, p. 252) found that native Hawaiian plants 
are more vulnerable to slug damage than nonnative plants. In 
particular, they found that the individuals of the endangered plants 
Cyanea superba and Schiedea obovata had 50 percent higher mortality 
when exposed to slugs when compared to individuals of the same species 
that were protected within slug exclosures. Slug damage has been 
documented on the plant Stenogyne cranwelliae (HBMP 2010k). As slugs 
are found in three of the described ecosystems (lowland wet, montane 
wet, and wet cliff) on Hawaii Island, the data from the above studies, 
in addition to direct observations from field biologists, suggest that 
slugs can directly damage or destroy native plants, including five of 
the plant species listed as endangered species in this final rule 
(Cyanea marksii, C. tritomantha, Cyrtandra nanawaleensis, C. wagneri, 
and Stenogyne cranwelliae).
Nonnative Western Yellow-Jacket Wasps
    The western yellow-jacket wasp (Vespula pensylvanica) is a social 
wasp species native to the mainland of North America. It was first 
reported from Oahu in the 1930s (Nishida and Evenhuis in Sherley 2000, 
p. 121), and an aggressive race became established in 1977 (Gambino et 
al. 1987, p. 170). This species is now particularly abundant between 
1,969 and 5,000 ft (600 and 1,524 m) in elevation (Gambino et al. 1990, 
pp. 1,088-1,095; Foote and Carson 1995, p. 371) on Kauai, Oahu, 
Molokai, Maui, Lanai, and Hawaii Island (GISD 2012b). The western 
yellow-jacket wasp is an aggressive, generalist predator (Gambino et 
al. 1987, p. 170). In temperate climates, the western yellow-jacket 
wasp has an annual life cycle, but in Hawaii's tropical climate, 
colonies of this species persist through a second year, allowing them 
to have larger numbers of individuals and thus a greater impact on prey 
populations (Gambino et al. 1987, pp. 169-170). In Haleakala National 
Park on Maui, western yellow-jacket wasps were found to forage 
predominantly on native arthropods (Gambino et al. 1987, pp. 169-170; 
Gambino et al. 1990, pp. 1,088-1,095; Gambino and Loope 1992, pp. 15-
21). Western yellow-jacket wasps have also been observed carrying and 
feeding upon recently captured adult Hawaiian Drosophila (Kaneshiro and 
Kaneshiro 1995, pp. 40-45). These wasps are also believed to feed upon 
picture-wing fly larvae within their host plants (Carson 1986, pp. 3-
9). In addition, native picture-wing flies, including the species in 
this final rule, may be particularly vulnerable to predation by wasps 
due to their lekking (male territorial defensive displays during 
courtship and mating) behavior and conspicuous courtship displays that 
can last for several minutes (Kaneshiro 2006, pers. comm.). The 
concurrent arrival of the western yellow-jacket wasp and decline of 
picture-wing fly observations in some areas suggest that the wasp may 
have played a significant role in the decline of some of the picture-
wing fly populations, including populations of the picture-wing fly 
listed as endangered in this rule (Carson 1986, pp. 3-9; Foote and 
Carson 1995, p. 371; Kaneshiro and Kaneshiro 1995, pp. 40-45; Science 
Panel 2005, pp. 1-23). As the western yellow-jacket wasp is widespread 
within three ecosystems (lowland mesic, montane mesic, and montane wet) 
on Hawaii Island in which the two known occurrences of the picture-wing 
fly listed as endangered in this final rule occur, the results from the 
studies above, in addition to observations by field biologists, suggest 
that western yellow-jacket wasps can directly kill individuals of the 
picture-wing fly (Foote and Carson 1995, p. 371; Kaneshiro and 
Kaneshiro 1995, pp. 40-45; Science Panel 2005, pp. 1-23).
Nonnative Parasitoid Wasps
    The number of native parasitic Hymenoptera (parasitic wasps) in 
Hawaii is limited, and only species in the family Eucoilidae are known 
to use Hawaiian picture-wing flies as hosts (Montgomery 1975, pp. 74-
75; Kaneshiro and Kaneshiro 1995, pp. 44-45). However, several species 
of small parasitic wasps (Family Braconidae), including Diachasmimorpha 
tryoni (NCN), D. longicaudata (NCN), Opius vandenboschi (NCN), and 
Biosteres arisanus (NCN), were purposefully introduced into Hawaii to 
control nonnative pest tephritid fruit flies (Funasaki et al. 1988, pp. 
105-160). These parasitic wasps are also known to attack other species 
of flies, including native flies in the family Tephritidae. While these 
parasitic wasps have not been recorded parasitizing Hawaiian picture-
wing flies and, in fact, may not successfully develop in Drosophilidae, 
females will indiscriminately sting any fly larvae in their attempts to 
oviposit (lay eggs), resulting in mortality (Evans 1962, pp. 468-483). 
Because of this indiscriminate predatory behavior, we consider 
nonnative parasitoid wasps to represent a threat to the picture-wing 
fly listed as an endangered species in this final rule.
Nonnative Ants
    Ants are not a natural component of Hawaii's arthropod fauna, and 
native species evolved in the absence of predation pressure from ants. 
Ants can be particularly destructive predators because of their high 
densities, recruitment behavior, aggressiveness, and broad range of 
diet (Reimer 1993, pp. 13-17). Ants can prey directly upon native 
arthropods, exclude them through interference or exploitation 
competition for food resources, or displace them by monopolizing 
nesting or shelter sites (Krushelnychy et al. 2005, p. 6). The threat 
of ant predation on the picture-wing fly species in this final rule is 
amplified by the fact that most ant species have winged reproductive 
adults (Borror et al. 1989, p. 738) and can quickly establish new 
colonies in additional suitable habitats (Staples and Cowie 2001, p. 
55). These attributes allow some ants to destroy otherwise 
geographically isolated populations of native arthropods (Nafus 1993, 
pp. 19, 22-23).
    At least 47 species of ants are known to be established in the 
Hawaiian Islands (Krushelnycky 2008, pp. 1-11), and at least 4 
particularly aggressive species (the big-headed ant (Pheidole 
megacephala), the long-legged ant (also known as the yellow crazy ant) 
(Anoplolepis gracilipes), Solenopsis papuana (NCN), and Solenopsis 
geminata (NCN)) have severely impacted the native insect fauna, likely 
including native picture-wing flies (Reimer 1993, pp. 13-17). Numerous 
other species of ants are recognized as threats to Hawaii's native 
invertebrates, and an unknown number of new species are established 
every few years (Staples and Cowie 2001, p. 53). As a group, ants 
occupy most of Hawaii's habitat types, from coastal to subalpine 
ecosystems;

[[Page 64677]]

however, many species are still invading mid-elevation montane mesic 
forests, and few species have been able to colonize undisturbed montane 
wet ecosystems (Reimer 1993, pp. 13-17). The lowland forests are a 
portal of entry to the montane and subalpine ecosystems, and, 
therefore, because ants are actively invading increasingly elevated 
ecosystems, ants are more likely to occur in high densities in the 
lowland mesic and montane mesic ecosystems currently occupied by the 
picture-wing fly (Reimer 1993, pp. 13-17).
    The big-headed ant originated in central Africa (Krushelnycky et 
al. 2005, p. 24) and was first reported in Hawaii in 1879 (Krushelnycky 
et al. 2005, p. 24). This species is considered one of the most 
invasive and widely distributed ants in the world (Holway et al. 2002, 
pp. 181-233; Krushelnycky et al. 2005, p. 5). In Hawaii, this species 
is the most ubiquitous ant species found, from coastal to mesic habitat 
up to 4,000 ft (1,219 m) in elevation, including within the habitat 
areas of the picture-wing fly listed as endangered in this rule. With 
few exceptions, native insects have been eliminated in habitats where 
the big-headed ant is present (Gagne 1979, p. 81; Gillespie and Reimer 
1993, p. 22). Consequently, big-headed ants represent a threat to the 
picture-wing fly, in the lowland mesic and montane mesic ecosystems 
(Reimer 1993, pp. 14, 17; Holway et al. 2002, pp. 181-233; Daly and 
Magnacca 2003, pp. 9-10; Krushelnycky et al. 2005, p. 5).
    The long-legged ant appeared in Hawaii in 1952, and now occurs on 
Hawaii, Kauai, Maui, and Oahu (Reimer et al. 1990, p. 42; http://www.antweb.org, 2011). It inhabits low- to-mid-elevation (less than 
2,000 ft (600 m)), rocky areas of moderate rainfall (less than 100 in 
(250 cm) annually) (Reimer et al. 1990, p. 42). Although surveys have 
not been conducted to ascertain this species' presence in the two known 
sites occupied by the picture-wing fly, we believe that the long-legged 
ant likely occurs within the lowland mesic ecosystem that supports the 
picture-wing fly due to the ant's aggressive nature and ability to 
spread and colonize new locations (Foote 2008, pers. comm.). Direct 
observations indicate Hawaiian arthropods are susceptible to predation 
by this species; Gillespie and Reimer (1993, p. 21) and Hardy (1979, 
pp. 37-38) documented the complete extirpation of several native 
insects within the Kipahulu area on Maui after this area was invaded by 
the long-legged ant. Lester and Tavite (2004, p. 391) found that long-
legged ants in the Tokelau Atolls (New Zealand) can form very high 
densities in a relatively short period of time with locally serious 
consequences for invertebrate diversity. Densities of 3,600 individuals 
collected in pitfall traps within a 24-hour period were observed, as 
well as predation upon invertebrates ranging from crabs to other ant 
species. On Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean, numerous studies have 
documented the range of impacts to native invertebrates, including the 
red land crab (Gecarcoidea natalis), as a result of predation by 
supercolonies of the long-legged ant (Abbott 2006, p. 102). Long-legged 
ants have the potential as predators to profoundly affect the endemic 
insect fauna in territories they occupy. Studies comparing insect 
populations at otherwise similar ant-infested and ant-free sites found 
extremely low numbers of large endemic noctuid moth larvae (Agrotis 
spp. and Peridroma spp.) in ant-infested areas. Nests of groundnesting 
colletid bees (Nesoprosopis spp.) were eliminated from ant-infested 
sites (Reimer et al. 1990, p. 42). Although only cursory observations 
exist in Hawaii (Reimer et al. 1990, p. 42), we believe long-legged 
ants are a threat to the picture-wing fly listed as endangered in this 
rule in the lowland mesic ecosystem.
    Solenopsis papuana is the only abundant, aggressive ant that has 
invaded intact mesic to wet forest, as well as coastal and lowland dry 
habitats. This species occurs from sea level to over 2,000 ft (600 m) 
on all of the main Hawaiian Islands, and is still expanding its range 
(Reimer 1993, p. 14). Although surveys have not been conducted to 
ascertain this species' presence in either of the two known sites 
occupied by the picture-wing fly, because of the ant's expanding range 
and its widespread occurrence in coastal, lowland dry, and lowland 
mesic habitats, we believe S. papuana is a threat to the picture-wing 
fly in the lowland mesic and montane mesic ecosystems.
    Like Solenopsis papuana, S. geminata is also considered a 
significant threat to native invertebrates (Gillespie and Reimer 1993, 
pp. 21-33) and occurs on all the main Hawaiian Islands (Reimer et al. 
1990, p. 42; Loope and Krushelnycky 2007, p. 70). Found in drier areas 
of the Hawaiian Islands, it has displaced Pheidole megacephala as the 
dominant ant in some areas (Wong and Wong 1988, p. 175). Known to be a 
voracious, nonnative predator in many areas to where it has spread, the 
species was documented to significantly increase fruit fly mortality in 
field studies in Hawaii (Wong and Wong 1988, p. 175). In addition to 
predation, S. geminata workers tend honeydew-producing members of the 
Homoptera suborder, especially mealybugs, which can impact plants 
directly and indirectly through the spread of disease (Manaaki Whenua 
Landcare Research 2012--Ant Distribution Database). Solenopsis geminata 
was included among the eight species ranked as having the highest 
potential risk to New Zealand in a detailed pest risk assessment for 
the country (GISD 2012c), and is included as one of five ant species 
listed among the ``100 of the World's Worst Invaders'' (Manaaki Whenua 
Landcare Research 2012--Ant Distribution Database). Although surveys 
have not been conducted to ascertain this species' presence in either 
of the two sites occupied by the picture-wing fly, because of the ant's 
expanding range and its widespread occurrence in coastal, lowland dry, 
and lowland mesic habitats, it is a potential threat to the picture-
wing fly in the lowland mesic ecosystem.
    The Argentine ant (Linepithema humile) was discovered on the island 
of Oahu in 1940, and is now established on all the main Hawaiian 
Islands (Reimer et al. 1990, p. 42). Argentine ants do not disperse by 
flight, instead colonies are moved about with soil and construction 
material. The Argentine ant is found from coastal to subalpine 
ecosystems on the island of Maui, and on the slopes of Mauna Loa, in 
the lowland mesic and montane mesic ecosystems on Hawaii Island, the 
location of one of the two occurrences of the picture-wing fly (Hartley 
et al. 2010, pp. 83-94; Krushelnychy and Gillespie 2010, pp. 643-655). 
The Argentine ant has been documented to reduce populations of, or even 
eliminate, native arthropods in Haleakala National Park on Maui (Cole 
et al. 1992, pp. 1313-1322). On Maui, Argentine ants are significant 
predators on pest fruit flies (Wong et al. 1984, pp. 1454-1458), and 
Krushelychy and Gillespie (2010, pp. 643-655) found that Argentine ants 
on Hawaii Island are associated with the decline of an endemic phorid 
fly (Megaselia sp.). Krushelychy and Gillespie (2010, pp. 643-655) 
suggest that ants severely impact larval stages of many flies. While we 
are not aware of documented occurrences of predation by Argentine ants 
on picture-wing flies, including the species listed as endangered in 
this rule, these ants are considered to be a threat to native 
arthropods located at higher elevations (Cole et al. 1992, pp. 1313-
1322) and thus potentially to the picture-wing fly that occurs from 
2,000

[[Page 64678]]

ft to 4,500 ft (610 m to 1,372 m) in elevation, in the lowland mesic, 
montane mesic, and montane wet ecosystems on Hawaii Island (Science 
Panel 2005, pp. 1-23; Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.).
    The rarity or disappearance of native picture-wing fly species, 
including the species listed as endangered in this final rule, from 
historical observation sites over the past 100 years is due to a 
variety of factors. While there is no documentation that conclusively 
ties the decrease in picture-wing fly observations to the establishment 
of nonnative ants in lowland mesic, montane mesic, and montane wet 
ecosystems on Hawaii Island, the presence of nonnative ants in these 
habitats and the decline of picture-wing fly observations in some areas 
in these habitats suggest that nonnative ants may have played a role in 
the decline of some populations of the picture-wing fly listed as 
endangered in this rule. As nonnative predatory ants are found in three 
of the described ecosystems (lowland mesic, montane mesic, and montane 
wet) on Hawaii Island in which the picture-wing fly occurs, the data 
from the above studies, in addition to direct observations from field 
biologists, suggest that nonnative predatory ants contribute to the 
reduction in range and abundance of the picture-wing fly (Science Panel 
2005, pp. 1-23).
Two-Spotted Leaf Hopper
    Predation by the two-spotted leaf-hopper (Sophonia rufofascia) has 
been reported on plants in the genus Pritchardia throughout the main 
Hawaiian Islands and may be a threat to the plant Pritchardia lanigera 
in this final rule (Chapin et al. 2004, p. 279). This nonnative insect 
damages the leaves it feeds on, typically causing chlorosis (yellowing 
due to disrupted chlorophyll production) to browning and death of 
foliage (Jones et al. 2000, pp. 171-180). The damage to plants can 
result in the death of affected leaves or the whole plant, owing to the 
combined action of its feeding and oviposition behavior (Alyokhin et 
al. 2004, p. 1). In addition to the mechanical damage caused by the 
feeding process, the insect may introduce plant pathogens that lead to 
eventual plant death (Jones et al. 2006, p. 2). The two-spotted 
leafhopper is a highly polyphagous insect (it feeds on many different 
types of food). Sixty-eight percent of its recorded host plant species 
in Hawaii are fruit, vegetable, and ornamental crops, and 22 percent 
are endemic plants, over half of which are rare and endangered 
(Alyokhin et al. 2004, p. 6). Its range is limited to below 4,000 ft 
(1,219 m) in elevation, unless there is a favorable microclimate. While 
there has been a dramatic reduction in the number of two-spotted 
leafhopper populations between 2005 and 2007 (possibly due to egg 
parasitism), this nonnative insect has not been eradicated, and 
predation by this nonnative insect remains a threat (Fukada 2007, in 
litt.). Chapin et al. (2004, p. 279) believe that constant monitoring 
of both wild and cultivated Pritchardia populations will be necessary 
to abate this threat.
Nonnative Beetles
    The Hawaiian Islands now support several species of nonnative 
beetles (family Scolytidae, genus Coccotrypes), a few of which bore 
into and feed on the nuts produced by certain native and nonnative palm 
trees, including those in the genus Pritchardia (Swezey 1927, in litt.; 
Science Panel 2005, pp. 1-23; Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.). Species of 
Coccotrypes beetles prefer trees with large seeds, like those of 
Pritchardia spp. (Beaver 1987, p. 11). Trees of Pritchardia spp. drop 
their fruit before the fruit reaches maturity due to the boring action 
of the Coccotrypes spp. beetles, thereby reducing natural regeneration 
in the wild (Beaver 1987, p. 11; Magnacca 2005, in litt.; Science Panel 
2005, pp. 1-23). The threat from Coccotrypes spp. beetles on 
Pritchardia spp. in Hawaii is expected to increase with time if the 
beetles are not controlled (Richardson 2011, pers. comm.). Although 
Pritchardia spp. are long-lived (up to 100 years), over time, 
Coccotrypes spp. beetles may severely impact Hawaiian species of 
Pritchardia, including Pritchardia lanigera, which is listed as 
endangered in this final rule.
Conservation Efforts To Reduce Disease or Predation
    There are no approved HCPs, CCAs, or SHAs that specifically address 
these 15 species and threats from predation. We acknowledge that in the 
State of Hawaii there are several voluntary conservation efforts (e.g., 
construction of fences) that may be helping to ameliorate the threats 
to the 15 species listed as endangered in this final rule due to 
predation by nonnative animal species, specifically predation by feral 
ungulates on the 13 plants species. However, these efforts are 
overwhelmed by the number of threats, the extent of these threats 
across the landscape, and the lack of sufficient resources (e.g., 
funding) to control or eradicate them from all areas where these 15 
species occur now or occurred historically. See ``Conservation Efforts 
to Reduce Habitat Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of Range'' 
under Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of Habitat or Range, above, for a summary of some voluntary 
conservation actions to address threats from feral ungulates. We are 
unaware of voluntary conservation measures to address the following 
threats: (1) Predation by rats on 11 of the 13 plants; (2) predation by 
nonnative slugs on 5 of the 13 plant species; (3) predation by 
nonnative insects (e.g., western yellow-jacket wasp, ants, parasitoid 
wasps) on the picture-wing fly; and (4) predation by nonnative insects 
on Pritchardia lanigera.
Summary of Disease or Predation
    We are unaware of any information that indicates that disease is a 
threat to any of the 15 species in this final rule.
    Although conservation measures are in place in some areas where 
each of the 15 species in this final rule occurs, information does not 
indicate that they are ameliorating the threat of predation described 
above. Therefore, we consider predation by nonnative animal species 
(pigs, goats, cattle, sheep, mouflon sheep, rats, slugs, wasps, ants, 
the two-spotted leaf hopper, and beetles) to pose an ongoing threat to 
all 13 plant species and the picture-wing fly in this final rule 
throughout their ranges for the following reasons:
    (1) Observations and reports have documented that pigs, goats, 
cattle, sheep, and mouflon sheep browse and trample all 13 plant 
species and the host plants of the picture-wing fly in this rule (see 
Table 3), in addition to other studies demonstrating the negative 
impacts of ungulate browsing and trampling on native plant species of 
the islands (Spatz and Mueller-Dombois 1973, p. 874; Diong 1982, p. 
160; Cuddihy and Stone 1990, p. 67).
    (2) Nonnative rats and slugs cause mechanical damage to plants and 
destruction of plant parts (branches, fruits, and seeds), and are 
considered a threat to 11 of the 13 plant species in this rule (see 
Table 3). All of the plants and the picture-wing fly in this final rule 
are impacted by either introduced ungulates, as noted in item (1) 
above, or nonnative rats and slugs, or both.
    (3) Predation of adults and larvae of Hawaiian picture-wing flies 
by the western yellow-jacket wasp has been observed, and it has been 
suggested that wasp predation has played a significant role in the 
dramatic declines of some populations of picture-wing flies (Carson 
1986, pp. 3-9; Foote and Carson 1995, p. 371; Kaneshiro and Kaneshiro 
1995, pp. 40-45; Science Panel 2005, pp. 1-23). Because western yellow-
jacket wasps are found in the three

[[Page 64679]]

ecosystems in which the picture-wing fly is found, and western yellow-
jacket wasps are known to prey on picture-wing flies, we consider 
predation by the western yellow-jacket wasp to be a serious and ongoing 
threat to Drosophila digressa.
    (4) Parasitic wasps purposefully introduced to Hawaii to control 
nonnative pest fruit flies will indiscriminately sting any fly larvae 
when attempting to lay their eggs. Predation by one or more of these 
nonnative parasitic wasps is a threat to Drosophila digressa.
    (5) Picture-wing flies are vulnerable to predation by ants, and the 
range of Drosophila digressa overlaps that of particularly aggressive, 
nonnative, predatory ant species that currently occur from sea level to 
the montane mesic ecosystem (over 3,280 ft (1,000 m) elevation) on all 
of the main Hawaiian Islands. We therefore consider predation by these 
nonnative ants to be a threat to Drosophila digressa.
    (6) The plant Pritchardia lanigera is vulnerable to predation by 
nonnative invertebrates. The two-spotted leafhopper has been observed 
on plants in the genus Pritchardia throughout the main Hawaiian 
Islands, and poses a threat to Pritchardia lanigera (Chapin et al. 
2004, p. 279). Two-spotted leafhopper damage results in the death of 
affected leaves or the entire plant (Alyokhin et al. 2004, p. 1). In 
addition, several species of nonnative beetles (Coccotrypes spp.) bore 
into and feed upon the seeds of the native palm genus Pritchardia 
(Swezey 1927, in litt.; Science Panel 2005, pp. 1-23; Magnacca 2011b, 
pers. comm.), which results in reduced natural regeneration of the 
plants (Beaver 1987, p. 11; Magnacca 2005, in litt.; Science Panel 
2005, pp. 1-23).
    These threats are serious and ongoing, act in concert with other 
threats to the species, and are expected to continue or increase in 
magnitude and intensity into the future without effective management 
actions to control or eradicate them. In addition, negative impacts to 
native Hawaiian plants on Hawaii Island from grazing and browsing by 
axis deer are likely should this nonnative ungulate increase in numbers 
and range on the island.

Factor D. The Inadequacy of Existing Regulatory Mechanisms

Feral Ungulates
    Nonnative ungulates pose a major ongoing threat to all 13 plant 
species, and to the picture-wing fly, through destruction and 
degradation of terrestrial habitat, and through direct predation of the 
13 plant species (see Table 3). In addition, nonnative ungulates (feral 
goats and cattle) pose an ongoing threat to the anchialine pool shrimp 
through destruction and degradation of its anchialine pool habitat at 
Lua o Palahemo (feral ungulates are not reported to pose a threat to 
the anchialine pool habitat at Manuka). Feral goats and cattle trample 
and forage on both native and nonnative plants around and near the pool 
opening at Lua o Palahemo, and increase erosion around the pool and 
sediment entering the pool. The State of Hawaii provides game mammal 
(feral pigs, goats, cattle, sheep, and mouflon sheep) hunting 
opportunities on 42 State-designated public hunting areas on the island 
of Hawaii (H.A.R. 13-123; Mello 2011, pers. comm.). The State's 
management objectives for game animals range from maximizing public 
hunting opportunities (e.g., ``sustained yield'') in some areas to 
removal by State staff, or their designees, in other areas (H.A.R. 13-
123). Ten of the 13 plant species (Cyanea marksii, Cyanea tritomantha, 
Cyrtandra nanawaleensis, Cyrtandra wagneri, Phyllostegia floribunda, 
Pittosporum hawaiiense, Platydesma remyi, Pritchardia lanigera, 
Schiedea hawaiiensis, and Stenogyne cranwelliae) and the picture-wing 
fly have occurrences in areas where terrestrial habitat may be 
manipulated for game enhancement and where game populations are 
maintained at prescribed levels using public hunting (Perlman et al. 
2001, in litt.; Perlman et al. 2004, in litt.; Lorence and Perlman 
2007, pp. 357-361; PEPP 2007, p. 61; Pratt 2007a, in litt.; Pratt 
2007b, in litt.; Benitez et al. 2008, p. 58; Agorastos 2010, in litt.; 
HBMP 2010c; HBMP 2010e; HBMP 2010f; HBMP 2010g; HBMP 2010h; HBMP 2010i; 
HBMPk; PEPP 2010, p. 63; Bio 2011, pers. comm.; Evans 2011, in litt.; 
Perry 2011, in litt.; Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.; H.A.R. 13-123). 
Public hunting areas are not fenced, and game mammals have unrestricted 
access to most areas across the landscape, regardless of underlying 
land-use designation. While fences are sometimes built to protect areas 
from game mammals, the current number and locations of fences are not 
adequate to prevent habitat degradation and destruction for all 15 
species, or the direct predation of the 13 plant species on Hawaii 
Island (see Table 3). However, the State game animal regulations are 
not designed nor intended to provide habitat protection, and there are 
no other regulations designed to address habitat protection from 
ungulates.
    The capacity of Federal and State agencies and their 
nongovernmental partners in Hawaii to mitigate the effects of 
introduced pests, such as ungulates and weeds, is limited due to the 
large number of taxa currently causing damage (Coordinating Group on 
Alien Pest Species (CGAPS) 2009). Many invasive weeds established on 
Hawaii Island have currently limited but expanding ranges and are of 
concern. Resources available to reduce the spread of these species and 
counter their negative ecological effects are limited. Control of 
established pests is largely focused on a few invasive species that 
cause significant economic or environmental damage to public and 
private lands. Comprehensive control of an array of invasive pests and 
management to reduce disturbance regimes that favor certain invasive 
species remain limited in scope. If current levels of funding and 
regulatory support for invasive species control are maintained on 
Hawaii Island, the Service expects existing programs to continue to 
exclude or, on a very limited basis, control invasive species only in 
high-priority areas. Threats from established pests (e.g., nonnative 
ungulates, weeds, and invertebrates) are ongoing and expected to 
continue into the future.
Introduction of Nonnative Species
    Currently, four agencies are responsible for inspection of goods 
arriving in Hawaii (CGAPS 2009). The Hawaii Department of Agriculture 
(HDOA) inspects domestic cargo and vessels, and focuses on pests of 
concern to Hawaii, especially insects or plant diseases not yet known 
to be present in the State (HDOA 2009). The U.S. Department of Homeland 
Security's Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is responsible for 
inspecting commercial, private, and military vessels and aircraft, and 
related cargo and passengers arriving from foreign locations. CBP 
focuses on a wide range of quarantine issues involving non-propagative 
plant materials (processed and unprocessed); wooden packing materials, 
timber, and products; internationally regulated commercial species 
under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of 
Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES); seeds and plants listed as noxious; soil; 
and pests of concern to the greater United States, such as pests of 
mainland U.S. forests and agriculture. The U.S. Department of 
Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Plant 
Protection and Quarantine (USDA-APHIS-PPQ) inspects propagative plant 
material,

[[Page 64680]]

provides identification services for arriving plants and pests, 
conducts pest risk assessments, trains CBP personnel, conducts 
permitting and preclearance inspections for products originating in 
foreign countries, and maintains a pest database that, again, has a 
focus on pests of wide concern across the United States. The Service 
inspects arriving wildlife products, with the goal of enforcing the 
injurious wildlife provisions of the Lacey Act (18 U.S.C. 42; 16 U.S.C. 
3371 et seq.), and identifying CITES violations.
    The State of Hawaii's unique biosecurity needs are not recognized 
by Federal import regulations. Under the USDA-APHIS-PPQ's commodity 
risk assessments for plant pests, regulations are based on species 
considered threats to the mainland United States and do not address 
many species that could be pests in Hawaii (Hawaii Legislative 
Reference Bureau (HLRB) 2002, pp. 1-109; USDA-APHIS-PPQ 2010, pp. 1-88; 
CGAPS 2009, pp. 1-14). Interstate commerce provides the pathway for 
invasive species and commodities infested with non-Federal quarantine 
pests to enter Hawaii. Pests of quarantine concern for Hawaii may be 
intercepted at Hawaiian ports by Federal agents, but are not always 
acted on by them because these pests are not regulated under Federal 
mandates. Hence, Federal protection against pest species of concern to 
Hawaii has historically been inadequate. It is possible for the USDA to 
grant Hawaii protective exemptions under the ``Special Local Needs 
Rule,'' when clear and comprehensive arguments for both agricultural 
and conservation issues are provided; however, this exemption procedure 
operates on a case-by-case basis. Therefore, that avenue may only 
provide minimal protection against the large diversity of foreign pests 
that threaten Hawaii.
    Adequate staffing, facilities, and equipment for Federal and State 
pest inspectors and identifiers in Hawaii devoted to invasive species 
interdiction are critical biosecurity gaps (HLRB 2002, pp. 1-14; USDA-
APHIS-PPQ 2010, pp. 1-88; CGAPS 2009, pp. 1-14). State laws have 
recently been passed that allow the HDOA to collect fees for quarantine 
inspection of freight entering Hawaii (e.g., Act 36 (2011) H.R.S. 150A-
5.3). Legislation passed and enacted on July 8, 2011 (H.B. 1568), 
requires commercial harbors and airports in Hawaii to provide 
biosecurity and inspection facilities to facilitate the movement of 
cargo through the ports. This enactment is a significant step toward 
optimizing the biosecurity capacity in the State of Hawaii; however, 
only time will determine the true effectiveness of this legislation. 
From a Federal perspective, there is a need to ensure that all civilian 
and military port and airport operations and construction are in 
compliance with the Federal Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended. 
The introduction of new pests to the State of Hawaii is a significant 
risk to federally listed species because the existing regulations are 
inadequate for the reasons discussed in the sections below.
Nonnative Animal Species
Vertebrate Species
    The State of Hawaii's laws prohibit the importation of all animals 
unless they are specifically placed on a list of allowable species 
(HLRB 2002, pp. 1-109; CGAPS 2010, pp. 1-14). The importation and 
interstate transport of invasive vertebrates is federally regulated by 
the Service under the Lacey Act as ``injurious wildlife'' (Fowler et 
al. 2007, pp. 353-359); the list of vertebrates considered ``injurious 
wildlife'' is provided at 50 CFR 16. However, the law in its current 
form has limited effectiveness in preventing invasive vertebrate 
introductions into the State of Hawaii due to the following factors: 
(1) The list of vertebrates considered as ``injurious wildlife'' and 
provided at 50 CFR 16 includes a relatively limited list of vertebrate 
species that are federally enforceable under the Lacey Act; (2) the 
current list of vertebrates that are considered ``injurious wildlife'' 
may not include injurious wildlife that are identified under individual 
State laws or regulations; and (3) listing additional vertebrate 
species under 50 CFR 16 may entail a long process or timeframe. On June 
21, 2012, a new State law, Act 144 (``Relating to Wildlife''), was 
signed into law. Act 144 prohibits the interisland possession, 
transfer, transport, or release after transport of wild or feral deer, 
and establishes mandatory fines. On June 21, 2012, Act 149 (``Relating 
to Emergency Rules for Threats to Natural Resources or the Health of 
the Environment'') was also signed into State law. Act 149 expands the 
ability of State agencies to adopt emergency rules to address 
situations that impose imminent threats to natural resources (Aila 
2012a, in litt.; Martin 2012, in litt.). However, the effectiveness of 
these two recently enacted laws has not yet been demonstrated.
    Recently (2010-2011), unauthorized introduction of axis deer (Axis 
axis) to the island of Hawaii as a game animal has occurred (Kessler 
2011, in litt.; Aila 2012a, in litt.). They have been observed in the 
regions of Kohala, Kau, Kona, and Mauna Kea (HDLNR 2011, in litt.). The 
Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources-Department of Forestry 
and Wildlife (HDLNR-HDOFAW) has developed a response-and-removal plan, 
including a partnership now underway between HDLNR, Hawaii Department 
of Agriculture (HDOA), the Big Island Invasive Species Committee 
(BIISC), Federal natural resource management agencies, ranchers, 
farmers, private landowners, and concerned citizens (http://www.bigisland-bigisland.com/, June 6, 2011). The partnership is working 
with animal trackers and game cameras to survey locations where axis 
deer have been observed in an effort to eradicate them on the island 
(http://www.bigisland-bigisland.com/, June 6, 2011; Osher 2012, in 
litt.). There is a high level of concern by the partnership due to the 
negative impacts of axis deer on agriculture and native ecosystems on 
neighboring islands (e.g., Maui) (Aila 2011, in litt.; Schipper 2011, 
in litt.; Aila 2012b, in litt.). In response to the presence of axis 
deer on Hawaii Island, the Hawaii Invasive Species Council drafted a 
bill to allow State agencies to adopt emergency rules in instances of 
imminent peril to the public health, safety, or morals, or to livestock 
and poultry health (Aila 2012a, in litt.). This was intended to address 
a gap in the current emergency rules authority, expanding the ability 
of State agencies to adopt emergency rules to address situations that 
impose imminent threats to natural resources (Aila 2012a, in litt.; 
Martin 2012, in litt.). This bill was enacted into State law on June 
21, 2012.
Invertebrate Species
    Predation by nonnative invertebrate pests (slugs, wasps, ants, 
leafhoppers, and beetles) negatively impacts 6 of the 13 the plant 
species and the picture-wing fly (see Table 3 and Factor C. Disease or 
Predation, above). It is likely that the introduction of most nonnative 
invertebrate pests to the State has been and continues to be accidental 
and incidental to other intentional and permitted activities. Although 
Hawaii State government and Federal agencies have regulations and some 
controls in place (see above), and a few private organizations are 
voluntarily addressing this issue, the introduction and movement of 
nonnative invertebrate pest species between islands and from one 
watershed to the next continues. For example, an average of 20 new 
alien invertebrate species have been introduced to Hawaii per year 
since 1970, an increase of 25 percent over the previous totals between 
1930 and 1970 (The Nature Conservancy of Hawaii

[[Page 64681]]

(TNCH) 1992, p. 8). Existing regulatory mechanisms therefore appear 
inadequate to ameliorate the threat of introductions of nonnative 
invertebrates, and we have no evidence to suggest that any changes to 
these regulatory mechanisms are anticipated in the future.
Nonnative Plant Species
    Nonnative plants destroy and modify habitat throughout the ranges 
of 14 of the 15 species listed as endangered in this final rule (see 
Table 3, above). As such, they represent a serious and ongoing threat 
to each of these species. In addition, nonnative plants have been shown 
to outcompete native plants and convert native-dominated plant 
communities to nonnative plant communities (see ``Habitat Destruction 
and Modification by Nonnative Plants,'' under Factor A. The Present or 
Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of Habitat or 
Range, above).
    The State of Hawaii allows the importation of most plant taxa, with 
limited exceptions, if shipped from domestic ports (HLRB 2002; USDA-
APHIS-PPQ 2010; CGAPS 2010). Hawaii's plant import rules (H.A.R. 4-70) 
regulate the importation of 13 plant taxa of economic interest; 
regulated crops include pineapple, sugarcane, palms, and pines. Certain 
horticultural crops (e.g., orchids) may require import permits and have 
pre-entry requirements that include treatment or quarantine or both, 
prior to or following entry into the State. The State noxious weed list 
(H.A.R. 4-68) and USDA-APHIS-PPQ's Restricted Plants List restrict the 
import of a limited number of noxious weeds. If not specifically 
prohibited, current Federal regulations allow plants to be imported 
from international ports with some restrictions. The Federal Noxious 
Weed List (see 7 CFR 360.200) includes few of the many globally known 
invasive plants, and plants in general do not require a weed risk 
assessment prior to importation from international ports. USDA-APHIS-
PPQ is in the process of finalizing rules to include a weed risk 
assessment for newly imported plants. Although the State has general 
guidelines for the importation of plants, and regulations are in place 
regarding the plant crops mentioned above, the intentional or 
inadvertent introduction of nonnative plants outside the regulatory 
process and movement of species between islands and from one watershed 
to the next continues, which represents a threat to native flora for 
the reasons described above. In addition, government funding is 
inadequate to provide for sufficient inspection services and 
monitoring. One study concluded that the plant importation laws 
virtually ensure new invasive plants will be introduced via the nursery 
and ornamental trade, and that outreach efforts cannot keep up with the 
multitude of new invasive plants being distributed. The author states 
the only thing that wide-scale public outreach can do in this regard is 
to let the public know new invasive plants are still being sold, and 
they should ask for noninvasive or native plants instead (Martin 2007, 
in litt.).
    In 1995, the Coordinating Group on Alien and Plant Species (CGAPS), 
a partnership comprised primarily of managers from every major Federal, 
State, County, and private agency and organization involved in invasive 
species work in Hawaii, facilitated the formation of the Hawaii 
Invasive Species Council (HISC), which was created by gubernatorial 
executive order in 2002, to coordinate local initiatives for the 
prevention and control of invasive species by providing policy-level 
direction and planning for the State departments responsible for 
invasive species issues. In 2003, the Governor signed into law Act 85, 
which conveys statutory authority to the HISC to continue to coordinate 
approaches among the various State and Federal agencies, and 
international and local initiatives for the prevention and control of 
invasive species (HDLNR 2003, p. 3-15; HISC 2009; H.R.S. 194-2(a)). 
Some of the recent priorities for the HISC include interagency efforts 
to control nonnative species such as the plants Miconia calvescens 
(miconia) and Cortaderia spp. (pampas grass), coqui frogs 
(Eleutherodactylus coqui), and ants (HISC 2009). Since 2009, State 
funding for HISC has been cut by approximately 50 percent (total 
funding dropped from $4 million in fiscal year FY 2009 to $2 million in 
FY 2010, and to $1.8 million for FY 2011 to FY 2013 (Atwood 2012, in 
litt.; Atwood 2013, in litt.). Congressional earmarks made up some of 
the shortfall in State funding in 2010 and into 2011. These funds 
supported ground crew staff that would have been laid off due to the 
shortfall in State funding (Clark 2012, in litt.). Following a 50-
percent reduction from FY 2009 funding, the HISC budget has remained 
relatively flat (i.e., State funding is equal to funding provided in 
2009) from FY 2010 to FY 2013 (Atwood 2013, in litt.).
Dumping of Trash and Introduction of Nonnative Fish
    The Lua o Palahemo anchialine pool is located in a remote, largely 
undeveloped area, but is well known and frequently visited by residents 
and visitors for recreational opportunities, as indicated by the 
numerous off-road vehicle tracks around the pool (USFWS 2012 in litt.; 
Richardson 2012, in litt., pp. 1-2). As of the 2010 survey, a sign 
posted near Lua o Palahemo indicates that individuals who disturb the 
site are subject to fines under Haw. Rev. Stat. 6E (Hawaii's State 
Historic Preservation Act (SHPA)). This statute makes it unlawful for 
any person to take, appropriate, excavate, injure, destroy, or alter 
any historic property or aviation artifact located upon lands owned or 
controlled by the State or any of its political subdivisions, except as 
permitted by the State. Violators are subject to fines of not less than 
$500 nor more than $10,000 for each separate offense. However, 
regardless of the above warning, sometime between the 2010 survey and 
the June 2012 visit by Service biologists, the sign had been removed by 
unknown persons (Richardson 2012, in litt., pp. 1-2).
    Three of the four anchialine pools in Manuka that support 
Vetericaris chaceorum are located between 10 and 33 ft (3 and 10 m) 
from the jeep road, which provides access to popular coastal fishing 
and recreational locations frequented by the public, and one pool is 
approximately 60 ft (18 m) from the road (Sakihara 2013, in litt.). The 
intentional introduction of nonnative freshwater fish is possible at 
these pools because there is evidence that at least one pool in Manuka 
harbors nonnative freshwater poeciliids (see Factors Affecting the 15 
Species, below) and marine fish, likely introduced by fishermen. Three 
of the four anchialine pools are located in Manuka NAR. Prohibited 
activities in the State natural area reserve include, but are not 
limited to, the removal, injury, or killing of any plant or animal life 
(except game mammals and birds), the introduction of any plant or 
animal life, and littering or deposition of refuse or any other 
substance (NAR System-Title 13, Subtitle 9 Natural Area Reserve System, 
Chap. 209 Sect. 13-209-4 Prohibited activities). The minimum fine for 
anyone convicted of violation of any laws or rules applicable to the 
natural area reserve system is $1,000. The maximum fine that may be 
collected is $10,000 for a third violation within 5 years. The State 
may also initiate legal action to recover administrative costs. 
However, there are no signs in place informing the public about the 
unique animals that inhabit the anchialine pools, the threats posed by 
dumping fish in the pools, or the prohibitions

[[Page 64682]]

against the introduction of plants or animals into the pools. In 
addition, there are no law enforcement officers or NAR staff assigned 
to regularly patrol the area for prohibited activities such as fish 
dumping in the anchialine pools (Hadway 2013, pers. comm.). Although 
the introduction of animals, such nonnative freshwater fish and marine 
fish, into Manuka NAR is a prohibited activity, an introduction has 
been documented in at least one pool in Manuka. Therefore, the existing 
State NARs rules are not adequately preventing the introduction of 
nonnative freshwater fish into the anchialine pools within the NAR.
    On the basis of the above information, existing State and Federal 
regulatory mechanisms are not adequately preventing the introduction of 
nonnative species to Hawaii via interstate and international 
mechanisms, or intrastate movement of nonnative species between 
islands, and watersheds in Hawaii, and thus do not adequately protect 
each of the 13 plant species and the picture-wing fly in this final 
rule from the threat of new introductions of nonnative species, or from 
the continued expansion of nonnative species populations on and between 
islands and watersheds. Nonnative species prey upon species, modify or 
destroy habitat, or directly compete with one or more of these 14 
species for food, space, and other necessary resources. The impacts 
from these introduced threats are ongoing and are expected to continue 
into the future.
    In addition, the existing regulatory mechanisms do not provide 
adequate protection for the anchialine pool shrimp, Vetericaris 
chaceorum, from the intentional dumping of trash and introduction of 
nonnative fish into the pools that support this pool shrimp (at Lua o 
Palahemo and Manuka NAR, see above) (see Factor E. Other Natural or 
Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued Existence, below). Existing 
regulatory mechanisms are therefore inadequate to ameliorate the threat 
of introductions of trash and nonnative fish into the pools that 
support the anchialine pool shrimp listed as endangered in this final 
rule, and we have no evidence to suggest that any changes to these 
regulatory mechanisms are anticipated in the future.
Summary of Inadequacy of Existing Regulatory Mechanisms
    The State's current management of nonnative game mammals is 
inadequate to prevent the degradation and destruction of habitat of the 
13 plant species, the anchialine pool shrimp, and the picture-wing fly 
(Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of Habitat or Range), and to prevent predation of all 13 
plant species and the host plants of the picture-wing fly Drosophila 
digressa (Factor C. Disease or Predation).
    Existing State and Federal regulatory mechanisms are not 
effectively preventing the introduction and spread of nonnative species 
from outside the State of Hawaii and between islands and watersheds 
within the State of Hawaii. Habitat-altering, nonnative plant species 
(Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of Habitat or Range) and predation by nonnative animal 
species (Factor C. Disease or Predation) pose a major ongoing threat to 
the 13 plant species and the picture-wing fly listed in this final 
rule.
    Existing State and Federal regulatory mechanisms do not provide 
adequate protection for the anchialine pool shrimp Vetericaris 
chaceorum, from the intentional dumping of trash and introduction of 
nonnative fish into Lua o Palahemo and the four pools at Manuka that 
support the anchialine pool shrimp (see Factor E. Other Natural or 
Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued Existence).
    As all 13 plant species and the picture-wing fly experience threats 
from habitat degradation and loss by nonnative plants (Factor A. The 
Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of 
Habitat or Range), and all 15 species experience threats from nonnative 
animals (including nonnative fish) (Factor A. The Present or Threatened 
Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of Habitat or Range and 
Factor C. Disease or Predation), we conclude the existing regulatory 
mechanisms are inadequate to sufficiently reduce these threats to all 
15 species.

Factor E. Other Natural or Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued 
Existence

    Other factors that pose threats to some or all of the 15 species 
include dumping of trash and the introduction of nonnative fish, small 
numbers of populations and small population sizes, hybridization, lack 
of or declining regeneration, loss of host plants, and other 
activities. Each threat is discussed in detail below, along with 
identification of which species are affected by these threats.
Dumping of Trash and Introduction of Nonnative Fish
    The depressional features of anchialine pools make them susceptible 
to dumping. Refuse found in degraded pools and pools that have been 
filled in with rubble has been dated to about 100 years old, and the 
practice continues today (Brock 2004, p. 15). Lua o Palahemo, one of 
the two known locations of Vetericaris chaceorum, the anchialine pool 
shrimp listed in this final rule, is located approximately 558 ft (170 
m) from a sandy beach frequented by visitors who fish and swim. In 
addition, there are multiple dirt roads that surround the pool, making 
it highly accessible. Plastic bags, paper, fishing line, water bottles, 
soda cans, radios, barbed wire, and a bicycle have been documented 
within the pool (Kensley and Williams 1986, pp. 417-418; Bozanic 2004, 
p. 1; Wada 2010, in litt.). Physical trash can increase the 
accumulation of sediment in the pool portion of Lua o Palahemo by 
plugging up the cracks and trapping sediments, which subsequently 
negatively impacts adequate water flushing. Also, physical trash can 
block the currently narrow passage into the much larger water body in 
the lava tube below. The degree of impact that trash imposes on a given 
anchialine pool habitat depends on the ratio between the size of the 
pool and the amount and type of trash (i.e., in a smaller pool, the 
negative impacts of trash on flushing would be greater because of the 
reduced aquatic substrate area). Introduction of trash involving 
chemical contamination into anchialine pools, as has been observed 
elsewhere on Hawaii Island (Brock 2004, pp. 15-16), will more 
drastically affect water quality and result in local extirpation of 
hypogeal shrimp species. Biologists did not record an accumulation of 
trash in the pool during the December 2012 survey (Wada 2012, in 
litt.). According to Sakihara, the pools at Manuka are threatened by 
nonnative species, trash, human waste, and physical alteration (at 
least one pool has been physically altered by the public). Dumping of 
trash has not been observed at the four pools that support V. chaceorum 
at Manuka, although trash dumping has been documented in and around 
other anchialine pools at Manuka, including at Keawaiki, where this 
species has been documented (Sakihara 2009, pp. 1, 21, 23, 25, 30). In 
addition, physical alteration (e.g., filling with trash such as 
aluminum cans and paper by campers), has been reported in at least one 
anchialine pool at Keawaiki, although it has not been observed in the 
four pools

[[Page 64683]]

that support V. chaceorum (Sakihara 2009, pp. 4, 23, 25).
    In general, the accidental or intentional introduction and spread 
of nonnative fish (bait and aquarium fish) is considered the greatest 
threat to anchialine pools in Hawaii (Brock 2004, p. 16). Maciolek 
(1983, p. 612) found that the abundance of shrimp in a given population 
is indirectly related to predation by fish. The release of mosquito 
fish (Gambusia affinis) and tilapia (Oreochromis mossambica (synonym: 
Tilapia mossambica) into the Waikoloa Anchialine Pond Preserve (WAAPA) 
at Waikoloa, North Kona, Hawaii, resulted in the infestation of all 
ponds within an approximately 3.2-ha (8-ac) area, which represented 
approximately two-thirds of the WAAPA. Within 6 months, all native 
hypogeal shrimp species disappeared (Brock 2004, pp. iii). Nonnative 
fish drive anchialine species out of the lighted, higher productivity 
portion of the pools, into the surrounding water table bedrock, 
subsequently leading to the decimation of the benthic community 
structure of the pool (Brock 2004, p. iii). In addition, nonnative fish 
prey on and exclude native hypogeal shrimp that are usually a dominant 
and essential (Brock 2004, p. 16) faunal component of anchialine pool 
ecosystems (Bailey-Brock and Brock 1993, pp. 338-355). The loss of the 
shrimp changes ecological succession by reducing herbivory of 
macroalgae, allowing an overgrowth and change of pool flora. This 
overgrowth changes the system from clear, well-flushed basins to a 
system characterized by heavy sedimentation and poor water exchange, 
which increases the rate of pool senescence (Brock 2004, p. 16). 
Nonnative fish, unlike native fish, are able to complete their life 
cycles within anchialine habitats, and remain a permanent, detrimental 
presence in all pools into which they are introduced (Brock 2004, p. 
16). In Hawaii, the most frequently illegally introduced fish are in 
the Poeciliidae family (freshwater fish that bear live young) and 
include mosquito fish, various mollies (Poecilia spp.), and tilapia, 
which prey on and exclude native hypogeal shrimp such as the 
herbivorous species upon which Vetericaris chaceorum presumably feed.
    Lua o Palahemo is highly accessible to off-road vehicle traffic and 
located near an area frequented by residents and visitors for fishing 
and other outdoor recreational activities. The pool is vulnerable to 
the intentional dumping of trash and introduction of nonnative fish 
(bait and aquarium fish) because the area is easily accessible to 
vehicles and human traffic, and yet due to its remote location, is far 
from regulatory oversight by the DHHL or the Hawaii State Deparment of 
Aquatic Resources (DAR). According to Brock (2012, pers. comm.), 
sometime in the 1980s, nonnative fish were introduced into Lua o 
Palahemo. It is our understanding that the fish were subsequently 
removed with a fish poison, and to our knowledge the pool currently 
remains free of nonnative fish. The most commonly used piscicide (fish 
pesticide) in the United States for management of fish in freshwater 
systems is a naturally occurring chemical, marketed as Rotenone. 
Rotenone use in marine systems (including anchialine pools) is illegal 
according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA 2007, pp. 22-23, 
29, 32; Finlayson et al. 2010, p. 2).
    Three of the four pools that support Vetericaris chaceorum at 
Manuka are located between 10 and 33 ft (3 and 10 m) from a jeep road 
that provides access to coastal fishing and recreational locations 
frequented by the public (Sakihara 2013, in litt.). The fourth pool is 
approximately 60 ft (18 m) from the jeep road (Sakihara 2013, in 
litt.). The pools are vulnerable to the intentional dumping of trash 
and introduction of nonnative fish because trash dumping has been 
documented in and around anchialine pools at Manuka, including at 
Keawaiki, where this species has been documented (Sakihara 2009, pp. 
21, 25, 30), and nonnative freshwater poeciliids (fish in the 
Poeciliidae family and that bear live young) have been introduced and 
established in at least one pool in the Manuka pool complex (Sakihara 
2012, in litt.). This pool is approximately 0.3 mi (0.5 km) from the 
four pools that support V. chaceorum. Marine fish have been detected in 
the same pool, and it is speculated that these fish were intentionally 
introduced into the pool by fishermen (Sakihara 2012, in litt.). 
Recreational users utilize anchialine pools as ``holding pools'' for 
bait fish (e.g., nonnative freshwater fish like tilapia, mosquito fish, 
and marine fish like aholehole (Kuhlia sp.) and kupipi (blackspot 
sergeant; Abudefduf sordidus)) used for fishing (Wada 2013, in litt.). 
The impacts of native marine fish on V. chaceorum are unknown. In 
addition, the pools that support V. chaceorum at Manuka are vulnerable 
to intentional physical alteration because at least one anchialine pool 
at Keawaiki (where this species has been documented) has been altered, 
although pool alteration has not been observed in the four pools that 
support V. chaceorum (Sakihara 2009, p. 23).
    As the anchialine pool shrimp Vetericaris chaceorum is only known 
from two locations, the introduction of nonnative fish, which prey on 
and exclude native hypogeal shrimp like V. chaceorum or its associated 
prey shrimp species, would lead to the extirpation of this species at 
one or both of its known locations, directly or indirectly due to the 
lower abundance of co-occurring shrimp species that provide food 
resources to V. chaceorum. In addition, the loss of native shrimp 
species leads to changes in ecological succession in anchialine pools, 
leading to senescence of the pool habitat, thereby rendering the pool 
unsuitable habitat (Brock 2004, p. 16). Dumping of nonnative fish into 
one or more of the three anchialine pools at Manuka, which are believed 
to have a subterranean connection, would impact the integrity of all 
three pools should nonnative fish spread from the pool of introduction 
to the other two pools. Although not common, experts agree that the 
dumping of nonnative fish can happen (Sakihara 2013, in litt.; Wada 
2013, pers. comm.). A fourth pool that supports V. chaceorum is not 
believed to have a subterranean connection to other pools at Manuka.
Recreational Use of Off-Road Vehicles
    Off-road vehicles frequent the area surrounding the Lua o Palahemo 
anchialine pool that supports one of the two known occurrences of 
Vetericaris chaceorum, resulting in increased erosion and accumulation 
of sediment, which negative impacts the anchialine pool habitat. The 
negative impacts from sedimentation are discussed under Factor A. The 
Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of 
Habitat or Range, above (Richarson 2012, in litt.)
Small Number of Individuals and Populations
    Species that are endemic to single islands are inherently more 
vulnerable to extinction than are widespread species, because of the 
increased risk of genetic bottlenecks; random demographic fluctuations; 
climate change effects; and localized catastrophes, such as hurricanes, 
drought, rockfalls, landslides, and disease outbreaks (Pimm et al. 
1988, p. 757; Mangel and Tier 1994, p. 607). These problems are further 
magnified when populations are few and restricted to a very small 
geographic area, and when the number of individuals in each population 
is very small. Populations with these characteristics face an increased 
likelihood of stochastic extinction due to changes in demography, the 
environment, genetics, or other factors (Gilpin and Soul[eacute] 1986, 
pp. 24-34). Small, isolated populations often exhibit reduced levels of 
genetic

[[Page 64684]]

variability, which diminishes the species' capacity to adapt and 
respond to environmental changes, thereby lessening the probability of 
long-term persistence (e.g., Barrett and Kohn 1991, p. 4; Newman and 
Pilson 1997, p. 361). Very small, isolated populations are also more 
susceptible to reduced reproductive vigor due to ineffective 
pollination (plants), inbreeding depression (plants and shrimp), and 
hybridization (plants and flies). The problems associated with small 
population size and vulnerability to random demographic fluctuations or 
natural catastrophes are further magnified by synergistic interactions 
with other threats, such as those discussed above (see Factor A. The 
Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of 
Habitat or Range and Factor C. Disease or Predation, above).
Plants
    A limited number of individuals (fewer than 50 individuals) is a 
threat to the following six plant species listed as endangered in this 
final rule: Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, Cyanea marksii, 
Cyrtandra wagneri, Platydesma remyi, Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei, and 
S. hawaiiensis. We consider these species highly vulnerable to 
extinction due to threats associated with small population size or 
small number of populations because:
     The only known occurrences of Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. 
hillebrandiana, Cyanea marksii, and Cyrtandra wagneri are threatened 
either by landslides, rockfalls, inundation by high surf, or erosion, 
or a combination of these, because of their locations in lowland wet, 
montane wet, coastal, and dry cliff ecosystems.
     Platydesma remyi is known from fewer than 40 scattered 
individuals (Stone et al. 1999, p. 1210; HBMP 2010i). Declining or lack 
of regeneration in the wild appears to threaten this species.
     Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei is known from a single 
individual in the Kohala Mountains (Perlman et al. 2001, in litt.; 
Wagner et al. 2005d, p. 106; HBMP 2010j; Bio 2011, pers. comm.).
     Habitat destruction or direct predation by ungulates, 
nonnative plants, drought, and fire are threats to the 25 to 40 
individuals of Schiedea hawaiiensis (Mitchell et al. 2005a; NDMC 2012--
Online Archives).
Animals
    Like most native island biota, the endemic anchialine pool shrimp 
and Hawaiian picture-wing fly are particularly sensitive to 
disturbances due to low number of individuals, low population numbers, 
and small geographic ranges. We consider the picture-wing fly 
vulnerable to extinction due to threats associated with low number of 
individuals and low number of populations because Drosophila digressa 
is known from only two of its five historically known locations. The 
following threats to this species have all been documented: Predation 
by nonnative wasps and ants; habitat degradation and destruction by 
nonnative ungulates, fire, and drought; loss of its host plants; and 
competition with nonnative flies for its host plants (Science Panel 
2005, pp. 1-23; Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.).
Hybridization
    Natural hybridization is a frequent phenomenon in plants and can 
lead to the formation of new species (Orians 2000, p. 1,949), or 
sometimes to the decline of species through genetic assimilation or 
``introgression'' (Ellstrand 1992, pp. 77, 81; Levine et al. 1996, pp. 
10-16; Rhymer and Simberloff 1996, p. 85). Hybridization, however, is 
especially problematic for rare species that come into contact with 
species that are abundant or more common (Rhymer and Simberloff 1996, 
p. 83). We consider hybridization to be a threat to three species, and 
potentially a threat to one more additional species in this final rule 
because hybridization may lead to extinction of the original 
genotypically distinct species. Hybrid swarms (hybrids between parent 
species, and subsequently formed progeny from crosses among hybrids and 
crosses of hybrids to parental species) have been reported between the 
plant Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla and B. menziesii ssp. 
filiformis near Puuwaawaa in north Kona (Ganders and Nagata 1983, p. 
12; Ganders and Nagata 1999, p. 278); the plant Cyrtandra nanawaleensis 
is known to hybridize with C. lysiosepala in and around the Nanawale FR 
(Price 2011, in litt.); and Cyrtandra wagneri is reported to hybridize 
with C. tintinnabula. Only eight individuals express the true phenotype 
of C. wagneri, and only three of these individuals are reproducing 
successfully (PEPP 2010, p. 102; Bio 2011, pers. comm.). Native species 
can also hybridize with related nonnative species. For example, native 
species of Pittosporum, including the plant Pittosporum hawaiiense, are 
known to exhibit high levels of gene flow, and hybridization between 
native Pittosporum and nonnative species of Pittosporum may occur when 
they occupy similar habitat and elevation (Daehler and Carino 2001, pp. 
91-96; Bacon et al. 2011, p. 733).
Regeneration
    Lack of, or low levels of, regeneration (reproduction and 
recruitment) in the wild has been observed, and is a threat to, 
Pittosporum hawaiiense, Platydesma remyi, and Pritchardia lanigera (Bio 
2011, pers. comm.; Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.). The reasons for this 
are not well understood: however, seed predation by rats, ungulates, 
and beetles is thought to play a role (Bio 2011, pers. comm.; Magnacca 
2011b, pers. comm.; Crysdale 2013, pers. comm.). In addition, Cyanea 
tritomantha is reported to produce few seeds with low viability. The 
reasons for this are unknown (Bio 2008, in litt.).
Competition
    Competition with nonnative tipulid flies (large crane flies, family 
Tipulidae) for larvae host plants adversely impacts the picture-wing 
fly listed in this final rule. The Hawaiian Islands now support several 
species of nonnative tipulid flies, and the larvae of some species 
within this group feed within the decomposing bark of some of the host 
plants utilized by picture-wing flies, including Cheirodendron, 
Clermontia, Pleomele, and Charpentiera, one of the two host plants for 
Drosophila digressa (Science Panel 2005, pp. 1-23; Magnacca 2005, in 
litt.). The effect of this competition is a reduction of available host 
plant material for the larvae of the picture-wing fly. In laboratory 
studies, Grimaldi and Jaenike (1984, pp. 1,113-1,120) demonstrated that 
competition between Drosophila larvae and other fly larvae can exhaust 
food resources, which affects both the probability of larval survival 
and the body size of adults, resulting in reduced adult fitness, 
fecundity, and lifespan. Both soldier and neriid flies have been 
suggested to impose a similar threat to Hawaiian picture-wing flies 
(Montgomery 2005, in litt.; Science Panel 2005, pp. 1-23).
Loss of Host Plants
    Drosophila digressa is dependent on decaying stem bark from plants 
in the genera Charpentiera and Pisonia for oviposition and larval 
development (Montgomery 1975, p. 95; Magnacca 2013, in litt.). 
Charpentiera and Pisonia are considered highly susceptible to damage 
from alien ungulates, such as pigs, cattle, mouflon, and goats, as well 
as competition with nonnative plants (e.g., Omalanthus populifolius, 
Schinus terebinthifolius, and Psidium cattleianum) (Foote and Carson 
1995, pp. 370-37; Science Panel 2005, pp.

[[Page 64685]]

1-23; Magnacca 2011b, pers. comm.; Magnacca 2013, in litt.). Bark-
breeding Drosophila species are sensitive to bottlenecks in host plant 
populations due to their dependence on older, senescent, or dying 
plants (Magnacca et al. 2008, p. 32). Altered decay cycles in host 
plants caused by genetic bottlenecks, or decreasing availability of 
host plants due to browsing and trampling by nonnative ungulates (pigs, 
goats, cattle, and mouflon), competition with nonnative plants, 
drought, or other phenomena can subsequently alter the life cycle of 
the picture-wing fly by disrupting the early stages of development. The 
habitat of Drosophila digressa at Manuka has experienced extreme to 
severe drought for several years, which has resulted in overall habitat 
degradation and appears to alter decay processes in the picture-wing 
fly host plants (both Charpentiera spp. and Pisonia spp.). Magnacca 
(2013, in litt.) anticipates an alteration in host plant decay will 
lead to a long-term decline in availability of host plants that can 
support the life-history requirements of D. digressa (see ``Habitat 
Destruction and Modification Due to Rockfalls, Treefalls, Landslides, 
Heavy Rain, Inundation by High Surf, Erosion, and Drought,'' above). In 
addition, predation by nonnative beetles (the branch and twig borer 
(Amphicerus cornutus), the black twig borer (Xylosandrus compactus), 
and weevils (Oxydema fusiforme) has been documented as a threat to 
Charpentiera spp. (Medeiros et al. 1986, p. 29; Giffin 2009, p. 81).
Conservation Efforts To Reduce Other Natural or Manmade Factors 
Affecting Their Continued Existence
    There are no approved HCPs, CCAs, SHAs, MOUs, or other voluntary 
actions that specifically address these 15 species and the threats from 
other natural or manmade factors. We are unaware of any voluntary 
conservation actions to address the threat of dumping of trash and 
introduction of nonnative fish into anchialine pools that support the 
anchialine pool shrimp, Vetericaris chaceorum, which is listed as 
endangered in this final rule. The State's PEP Program identified 8 of 
the 13 plant species (Cyanea marksii, Cyrtandra wagneri, Phyllostegia 
floribunda, Pittosporum hawaiiense, Platydesma remyi, Schiedea diffusa 
ssp. macraei, S. hawaiiensis, and Stenogyne cranwelliae) in this final 
rule as priority species for collection, propagation, and outplanting; 
however, due to other workload priorities and limited funding, they 
have not been able to carry out all of these actions (PEPP 2012, pp. 1-
169). While the actions they have been able to implement are a step 
toward increasing the overall numbers and populations of PEPP species 
in the wild, these actions are insufficient to eliminate the threat of 
limited numbers at this time. In addition, successful reproduction and 
replacement of outplanted individuals by seedlings, juveniles, and 
adults has not yet been observed in the wild. We are unaware of any 
voluntary conservation actions to address the threat to the picture-
wing fly from low number of individuals. We are unaware of any 
voluntary conservation actions to address the threat to three plant 
species from hybridization, the threat of lack of regeneration to four 
plant species, or the threats from competition with nonnative tipulid 
flies and the loss of host plants for the picture-wing fly.
Summary of Other Natural or Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued 
Existence
    The conservation measures described above are insufficient to 
eliminate the threat from other natural or manmade factors to each of 
the 15 species listed as endangered in this final rule. We consider the 
threats from dumping of trash and introduction of nonnative fish into 
the pools that support the anchialine pool shrimp in this final rule to 
be serious threats that can occur at any time, although their 
occurrence is not predictable. The use of anchialine pools for dumping 
of trash and introduction of nonnative fish are widespread practices in 
Hawaii and can occur at any time at the Lua o Palahemo and Manuka 
pools. Nonnative fish prey on or outcompete native, herbivorous 
anchialine pool shrimp that serve as the prey base for predatory 
species of shrimp, including the anchialine pool shrimp listed as 
endangered in this rule. In addition, recreational use of off-road 
vehicles that frequent Lua o Palahemo are a threat to the shrimp, due 
to the resulting erosion and sedimentation that builds up in the pool 
(for impacts associated with sedimentation, see Factor A. The Present 
or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment of Habitat or 
Range, above; and for impacts associated with off-road vehicles, see 
Factor E. Other Natural or Manmade Factors Affecting Their Continued 
Existence, above). The occurrence of off-road vehicle traffic is not 
predictable; however, it happens frequently and is expected to 
continue.
    We consider the threat from limited number of populations and few 
(less than 50) individuals to be a serious and ongoing threat to 6 
plant species in this final rule (Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. 
hillebrandiana, Cyanea marksii, Cyrtandra wagneri, Platydesma remyi, 
Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei, and S. hawaiiensis) because: (1) These 
species may experience reduced reproductive vigor due to ineffective 
pollination or inbreeding depression; (2) they may experience reduced 
levels of genetic variability, leading to diminished capacity to adapt 
and respond to environmental changes, thereby lessening the probability 
of long-term persistence; and (3) a single catastrophic event may 
result in extirpation of remaining populations and extinction of the 
species. This threat applies to the entire range of each species.
    The threat to the picture-wing fly from limited numbers of 
individuals and populations is ongoing and is expected to continue into 
the future because: (1) This species may experience reduced 
reproductive vigor due to inbreeding depression; (2) it may experience 
reduced levels of genetic variability leading to diminished capacity to 
adapt and respond to environmental changes, thereby lessening the 
probability of long-term persistence; (3) a single catastrophic event 
(e.g., hurricane, drought) may result in extirpation of remaining 
populations and extinction of this species; and (4) species with few 
known locations, such as Drosophila digressa, are less resilient to 
threats that might otherwise have a relatively minor impact on widely 
distributed species. For example, the reduced availability of host 
trees or an increase in predation of the picture-wing fly adults that 
might be absorbed in a widely distributed species could result in a 
significant decrease in survivorship or reproduction of a species with 
limited distribution. The limited distribution of this species thus 
magnifies the severity of the impact of the other threats discussed in 
this final rule.
    The threat from hybridization is unpredictable but an ongoing and 
ever-present threat to Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, Cyrtandra 
nanawaleensis, and Cyrtandra wagneri, and a potential threat to 
Pittosporum hawaiiense. We consider the threat to Cyanea tritomantha, 
Pittosporum hawaiiense, Platydesma remyi, and Pritchardia lanigera from 
lack of regeneration to be ongoing and to continue into the future 
because the reasons for the lack of recruitment in the wild are unknown 
and uncontrolled, and any competition from nonnative plants or habitat 
modification by ungulates or fire could lead to the extirpation of 
these species.
    Competition for host plants with nonnative tipulid flies is a 
threat to Drosophila digressa and is expected to continue into the 
future because field

[[Page 64686]]

biologists report that these nonnative flies are widespread and there 
is no mechanism in place to control their population growth. Loss of 
host plants (Charpentiera spp. and Pisonia spp.) is a threat to the 
picture-wing fly, and we consider this threat to continue into the 
future because field biologists have reported that species of 
Charpentiera and Pisonia are declining overall in the wild (see Factor 
A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or Curtailment 
of Habitat or Range and Factor C. Disease or Predation, above).
Summary of Factors
    The primary factors that pose serious and ongoing threats to one or 
more of the 15 species throughout their ranges in this final rule 
include: Habitat degradation and destruction by agriculture and 
urbanization, nonnative ungulates and plants, fire, natural disasters, 
sedimentation, and potentially climate change, and the interaction of 
these threats (Factor A); overutilization due to collection of seeds 
and seedlings of the plant Pritchardia lanigera for trade or market 
(Factor B); predation by nonnative animal species (pigs, goats, sheep, 
mouflon sheep, cattle, rats, nonnative fish, slugs, wasps, ants, two-
spotted leaf hopper, and beetles) (Factor C); inadequate regulatory 
mechanisms to address nonnative species, and human dumping of nonnative 
fish and trash into anchialine pools (Factor D); and dumping of trash, 
introduction of nonnative fish, recreational use, limited numbers of 
populations and individuals, hybridization, lack of regeneration, 
competition, and loss of host plants (Factor E). While we acknowledge 
the voluntary conservation measures described above may help to 
ameliorate one or more of the threats to the 15 species listed as 
endangered in this final rule, these conservation measures are 
insufficient to control or eradicate these threats from all areas where 
these species occur now or occurred historically.

Determination

    We have carefully assessed the best scientific and commercial 
information available regarding threats to each of the 15 species. We 
find that each of the 13 plant species and the picture-wing fly face 
threats that are ongoing and expected to continue into the future 
throughout their ranges from the present destruction and modification 
of their habitats from nonnative feral ungulates and nonnative plants 
(Factor A). Destruction and modification of habitat by development and 
urbanization is a threat to one plant species (Bidens micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla). Habitat destruction and modification from fire is a 
threat to three of the plant species (Bidens micrantha ssp. 
ctenophylla, Phyllostegia floribunda, and Schiedea hawaiiensis) and the 
picture-wing fly Drosophila digressa. Destruction and modification of 
habitat from rockfalls, landslides, treefalls, heavy rain, inundation 
by high surf, and subsequent erosion are a threat to four plant species 
(Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, Cyanea marksii, Cyanea 
tritomantha, and Cyrtandra wagneri). Habitat loss or degradation due to 
drought is a threat to two plants, Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla 
and Schiedea hawaiiensis, as well as to the picture-wing fly. We are 
concerned about the effects of projected climate change on all 15 
species, particularly rising temperatures, but recognize there is 
limited information on the exact nature of impacts that these species 
may experience.
    We find that the anchialine pool shrimp faces threats that are 
ongoing and expected to continue into the future from the present 
destruction and modification of its anchialine pool habitat at Lua o 
Palahemo, one of only two known locations for this species, due to 
sedimentation resulting from degradation of the immediate area 
surrounding this anchialine pool from nonnative feral ungulates (cattle 
and goats). Sedimentation reduces both food productivity and the 
ability of Lua o Palahemo to support the anchialine pool shrimp (Factor 
A).
    Overcollection for commercial and recreational purposes poses a 
threat to Pritchardia lanigera (Factor B).
    Predation and herbivory on all 13 plant species by feral pigs, 
goats, cattle, sheep, mouflon, rats, slugs, two-spotted leaf hoppers, 
or beetles poses a serious and ongoing threat, as does predation of the 
picture-wing fly by nonnative wasps and ants (Factor C).
    Existing regulatory mechanisms are inadequate to reduce current and 
ongoing threats posed by nonnative plants and animals to all 15 
species, and human dumping of nonnative fish and trash into the 
anchialine pools that support the anchialine pool shrimp Vetericaris 
chaceorum (Factor D).
    There are serious and ongoing threats to six plant species (Bidens 
hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, Cyanea marksii, Cyrtandra wagneri, 
Platydesma remyi, Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei, and S. hawaiiensis) 
and the picture-wing fly due to factors associated with small numbers 
of populations and individuals; to Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, 
Cyrtandra nanawaleensis, Cyrtandra wagneri, and potentially to 
Pittosporum hawaiiense from hybridization; to Cyanea tritomantha, 
Pittosporum hawaiiense, Platydesma remyi, and Pritchardia lanigera from 
the lack of regeneration in the wild; and to the picture-wing fly from 
competition for host plants with nonnative flies and declining numbers 
of host plants (Factor E) (see Table 3).
    The anchialine pool shrimp faces threats from the intentional 
dumping of trash and introduction of nonnative fish into its pool 
habitat in the two known locations. In addition, the pools that support 
Vetericaris chaceorum at Lua o Palahemo are potentially vulnerable to 
intentional physical alteration (i.e., sedimentation) (Bailey-Brock and 
Brock 1993, pp. 338-355; Brock 2004, pp. iii and 16) (Factor E) (see 
Table 3).
    These threats are exacerbated by these species' inherent 
vulnerability to extinction from stochastic events at any time because 
of their endemism, small numbers of individuals and populations, and 
restricted habitats.
    The Act defines an endangered species as any species that is ``in 
danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its 
range'' and a threatened species as any species ``that is likely to 
become endangered throughout all or a significant portion of its range 
within the foreseeable future.'' We find that each of these 15 endemic 
species is presently in danger of extinction throughout its entire 
range, based on the severity and scope of the ongoing and projected 
threats described above. These threats are exacerbated by small 
population sizes, the loss of redundancy and resiliency of these 
species, and the continued inadequacy of existing protective 
regulations. Based on our analysis, we have no reason to believe that 
population trends for any of the species that are the subjects of this 
final rule will improve, nor will the negative impacts of current 
threats acting on the species be effectively ameliorated in the future. 
Therefore, on the basis of the best available scientific and commercial 
information, we are listing the following 15 species as endangered 
species in accordance with section 3(6) of the Act: The plants Bidens 
hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, 
Cyanea marksii, Cyanea tritomantha, Cyrtandra nanawaleensis, Cyrtandra 
wagneri, Phyllostegia floribunda, Pittosporum hawaiiense, Platydesma 
remyi, Pritchardia lanigera, Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei, Schiedea 
hawaiiensis, and Stenogyne cranwelliae; the anchialine pool shrimp, 
Vetericaris chaceorum; and the picture-wing fly, Drosophila digressa.
    Under the Act and our implementing regulations, a species may 
warrant

[[Page 64687]]

listing if it is endangered or threatened throughout all or a 
significant portion of its range. Each of the 15 Hawaii Island species 
listed as endangered in this final rule is highly restricted in its 
range, and the threats occur throughout its range. Therefore, we 
assessed the status of each species throughout its entire range. In 
each case, the threats to the survival of these species occur 
throughout the species' ranges and are not restricted to any particular 
portion of those ranges. Accordingly, our assessment and determination 
applies to each species throughout its entire range.

Available Conservation Measures

    Conservation measures provided to species listed as endangered or 
threatened under the Act include recognition, recovery actions, 
requirements for Federal protection, and prohibitions against certain 
activities. Recognition through listing results in public awareness and 
conservation by Federal, State, and local agencies: Private 
organizations; and individuals. The Act encourages cooperation with the 
States and requires that recovery actions be carried out for all listed 
species. The protection measures required of Federal agencies and the 
prohibitions against certain activities involving listed animals and 
plants are discussed, in part, below.
    The primary purpose of the Act is the conservation of endangered 
and threatened species and the ecosystems upon which they depend. The 
ultimate goal of such conservation efforts is the recovery of these 
listed species, so that they no longer need the protective measures of 
the Act. Subsection 4(f) of the Act requires the Service to develop and 
implement recovery plans for the conservation of endangered and 
threatened species. The recovery planning process involves the 
identification of actions that are necessary to halt or reverse the 
species' decline by addressing the threats to its survival and 
recovery. The goal of this process is to restore listed species to a 
point where they are secure, self-sustaining, and functioning 
components of their ecosystems.
    Recovery planning includes the development of a recovery outline 
shortly after a species is listed, preparation of a draft and final 
recovery plan, and revisions to the plan as significant new information 
becomes available. The recovery outline guides the immediate 
implementation of urgent recovery actions and describes the process to 
be used to develop a recovery plan. The recovery plan identifies site-
specific management actions that will achieve recovery of the species, 
measurable criteria that help to determine when a species may be 
downlisted or delisted, and methods for monitoring recovery progress. 
Recovery plans also establish a framework for agencies to coordinate 
their recovery efforts and provide estimates of the cost of 
implementing recovery tasks. Recovery teams (comprised of species 
experts, Federal and State agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and 
stakeholders) are often established to develop recovery plans. When 
completed, the recovery outlines, draft recovery plans, and the final 
recovery plans will be available from our Web site (http://www.fws.gov/endangered), or from our Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office (see 
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT).
    Implementation of recovery actions generally requires the 
participation of a broad range of partners, including other Federal 
agencies, States, nongovernmental organizations, businesses, and 
private landowners. Examples of recovery actions include habitat 
restoration (e.g., restoration of native vegetation), research, captive 
propagation and reintroduction, and outreach and education. The 
recovery of many listed species cannot be accomplished solely on 
Federal lands because their range may occur primarily or solely on non-
Federal lands. To achieve recovery of these species requires 
cooperative conservation efforts on private and State lands.
    Funding for recovery actions may be available from a variety of 
sources, including Federal budgets, State programs, and cost share 
grants for non-Federal landowners, the academic community, and 
nongovernmental organizations. In addition, under section 6 of the Act, 
the State of Hawaii will be eligible for Federal funds to implement 
management actions that promote the protection and recovery of the 15 
species. Information on our grant programs that are available to aid 
species recovery can be found at: http://www.fws.gov/grants.
    Please let us know if you are interested in participating in 
recovery efforts for these species. Additionally, we invite you to 
submit any new information on these species whenever it becomes 
available and any information you may have for recovery planning 
purposes (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT).
    Section 7(a) of the Act, as amended, requires Federal agencies to 
evaluate their actions with respect to any species that is proposed or 
listed as endangered or threatened with respect to its critical 
habitat, if any is designated. Regulations implementing this 
interagency cooperation provision of the Act are codified at 50 CFR 
part 402. Section 7(a)(1) of the Act mandates that all Federal agencies 
shall utilize their authorities in furtherance of the purposes of the 
Act by carrying out programs for the conservation of endangered and 
threatened species listed pursuant to section 4 of the Act. Section 
7(a)(2) of the Act requires Federal agencies to ensure that activities 
they authorize, fund, or carry out are not likely to jeopardize the 
continued existence of a listed species or result in destruction or 
adverse modification of critical habitat. If a Federal action may 
affect the continued existence of a listed species or its critical 
habitat, the responsible Federal agency must enter into consultation 
with the Service.
    For the 15 plants and animals listed as endangered species in this 
final rule, Federal agency actions that may require consultation as 
described in the preceding paragraph include, but are not limited to, 
actions within the jurisdiction of the Natural Resources Conservation 
Service, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, and branches of the Department of Defense (DOD). Examples of 
these types of actions include activities funded or authorized under 
the Farm Bill Program, Environmental Quality Incentives Program, Ground 
and Surface Water Conservation Program, Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1251 
et seq.), Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program, and DOD construction 
activities related to training or other military missions.
    The Act and its implementing regulations set forth a series of 
general prohibitions and exceptions that apply to all endangered 
wildlife and plants. The prohibitions, codified at 50 CFR 17.21 for 
wildlife and 17.61 for plants, apply. These prohibitions, in part, make 
it illegal for any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United 
States to take (includes harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, 
kill, trap, capture, or collect; or to attempt any of these), import, 
export, ship in interstate commerce in the course of commercial 
activity, or sell or offer for sale in interstate or foreign commerce 
any listed wildlife species. It is also illegal to possess, sell, 
deliver, carry, transport, or ship any such wildlife that has been 
taken illegally. In addition, for plants listed as endangered, the Act 
prohibits the malicious damage or destruction on areas under Federal 
jurisdiction and the removal, cutting, digging up, or damaging or 
destroying of such plants in knowing violation of any State law or 
regulation, including State criminal trespass law. Certain exceptions 
to the

[[Page 64688]]

prohibitions apply to agents of the Service and State conservation 
agencies.
    We may issue permits to carry out otherwise prohibited activities 
involving endangered or threatened wildlife or plant species under 
certain circumstances. Regulations governing permits are codified at 50 
CFR 17.22 and 17.62 for endangered wildlife and plants, respectively. 
With regard to endangered wildlife, a permit must be issued for the 
following purposes: For scientific purposes, to enhance the propagation 
and survival of the species, and for incidental take in connection with 
otherwise lawful activities. For endangered plants, a permit must be 
issued for scientific purposes or for the enhancement of propagation or 
survival. Requests for copies of the regulations regarding listed 
species and inquiries about prohibitions and permits may be addressed 
to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Pacific Region, Ecological Services, 
Eastside Federal Complex, 911 NE. 11th Avenue, Portland, OR 97232-4181 
(telephone 503-231-6131; facsimile 503-231-6243).
    It is our policy, as published in the Federal Register on July 1, 
1994 (59 FR 34272), to identify to the maximum extent practicable at 
the time a species is listed, those activities that would or would not 
constitute a violation of section 9 of the Act. The intent of this 
policy is to increase public awareness of the effect of a listing on 
proposed and ongoing activities within the range of listed species. The 
following activities could potentially result in a violation of section 
9 of the Act; however, this list is not comprehensive:
    (1) Unauthorized collecting, handling, possessing, selling, 
delivering, carrying, or transporting of the species, including import 
or export across State lines and international boundaries, except for 
properly documented antique specimens of these taxa at least 100 years 
old, as defined by section 10(h)(1) of the Act;
    (2) Activities that take or harm the picture-wing fly or anchialine 
pool shrimp by causing significant habitat modification or degradation 
such that it causes actual injury by significantly impairing its 
essential behavior patterns. This may include introduction of nonnative 
species that compete with or prey upon the picture-wing fly or 
anchialine pool shrimp, or the unauthorized release of biological 
control agents that attack any life stage of these two species; and
    (3) Damaging or destroying any of the 13 listed plants in violation 
of the Hawaii State law prohibiting take of listed species.
    Questions regarding whether specific activities would constitute a 
violation of section 9 of the Act should be directed to the Pacific 
Islands Fish and Wildlife Office (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). 
Requests for copies of the regulations concerning listed animals and 
general inquiries regarding prohibitions and permits may be addressed 
to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Pacific Region, Ecological 
Services, Endangered Species Permits, Eastside Federal Complex, 911 NE. 
11th Avenue, Portland, OR 97232-4181 (telephone 503-231-6131; facsimile 
503-231-6243).
    Federal listing of the 15 species included in this rule 
automatically invokes State listing under Hawaii's Endangered Species 
law (H.R.S. 195D 1-32) and supplements the protection available under 
other State laws. These protections prohibit take of these species and 
encourage conservation by State government agencies. Further, the State 
may enter into agreements with Federal agencies to administer and 
manage any area required for the conservation, management, enhancement, 
or protection of endangered species (H.R.S. 195D-5). Funds for these 
activities could be made available under section 6 of the Act 
(Cooperation with the States). Thus, the Federal protection afforded to 
these species by listing them as endangered species is reinforced and 
supplemented by protection under State law.

Required Determinations

National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

    We have determined that environmental assessments and environmental 
impact statements, as defined under the authority of the National 
Environmental Policy Act (NEPA; 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), need not be 
prepared in connection with listing a species as an endangered or 
threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. We published a 
notice outlining our reasons for this determination in the Federal 
Register on October 25, 1983 (48 FR 49244).

References Cited

    A complete list of references cited in this rule is available on 
the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov under Docket No. FWS-R1-ES-
2012-0070 and upon request from the Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife 
Office (see ADDRESSES, above).

Authors

    The primary authors of this final rule are the staff members of the 
Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office.

List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 17

    Endangered and threatened species, Exports, Imports, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements, Transportation.

Regulation Promulgation

    Accordingly, we amend part 17, subchapter B of chapter I, title 50 
of the Code of Federal Regulations, as set forth below:

PART 17--AMENDED

0
1. The authority citation for part 17 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  16 U.S.C. 1361-1407; 1531-1544; 4201-4245, unless 
otherwise noted.


0
2. Amend Sec.  17.11(h), the List of Endangered and Threatened 
Wildlife, as follows:
0
a. By adding an entry for ``Fly, Hawaiian picture-wing'' in 
alphabetical order under INSECTS; and
0
b. By adding an entry for the ``Shrimp, anchialine pool'' in 
alphabetical order under CRUSTACEANS, to read as set forth below.


Sec.  17.11  Endangered and threatened wildlife.

* * * * *
    (h) * * *

[[Page 64689]]



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Species                                                    Vertebrate
--------------------------------------------------------                        population where                                  Critical     Special
                                                            Historic range       endangered or         Status      When listed    habitat       rules
           Common name                Scientific name                              threatened
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
             Insects
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Fly, Hawaiian picture-wing.......  Drosophila digressa.  U.S.A. (HI)........  Entire.............  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
           Crustaceans
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Shrimp, anchialine pool..........  Vetericaris           U.S.A. (HI)........  Entire.............  E                       818           NA           NA
                                    chaceorum.
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


0
3. Amend Sec.  17.12(h), the List of Endangered and Threatened Plants, 
as follows:
0
a. By removing the entry for Caesalpinia kavaiense under FLOWERING 
PLANTS; and
0
b. By adding entries for Bidens hillebrandiana ssp. hillebrandiana, 
Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla, Cyanea marksii, Cyanea tritomantha, 
Cyrtandra nanawaleensis, Cyrtandra wagneri, Mezoneuron kavaiense, 
Phyllostegia floribunda, Pittosporum hawaiiense, Platydesma remyi, 
Pritchardia lanigera, Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei, Schiedea 
hawaiiensis, and Stenogyne cranwelliae, in alphabetical order under 
FLOWERING PLANTS, to read as set forth below.


Sec.  17.12  Endangered and threatened plants.

* * * * *
    (h) * * *

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Species
--------------------------------------------------------    Historic range           Family            Status      When listed    Critical     Special
         Scientific name                Common name                                                                               habitat       rules
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Flowering Plants.................
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Bidens hillebrandiana ssp.         Kookoolau...........  U.S.A. (HI)........  Asteraceae.........  E                       818           NA           NA
 hillebrandiana.
Bidens micrantha ssp. ctenophylla  Kookoolau...........  U.S.A. (HI)........  Asteraceae.........  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Cyanea marksii...................  Haha................  U.S.A. (HI)........  Campanulaceae......  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Cyanea tritomantha...............  Aku.................  U.S.A. (HI)........  Campanulaceae......  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Cyrtandra nanawaleensis..........  Haiwale.............  U.S.A. (HI)........  Gesneriaceae.......  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Cyrtandra wagneri................  Haiwale.............  U.S.A. (HI)........  Gesneriaceae.......  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Mezoneuron kavaiense.............  Uhi uhi.............  U.S.A. (HI)........  Fabaceae...........  E                       238           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Phyllostegia floribunda..........  None................  U.S.A. (HI)........  Lamiaceae..........  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Pittosporum hawaiiense...........  Hoawa, haawa........  U.S.A. (HI)........  Pittosporaceae.....  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Platydesma remyi.................  None................  U.S.A. (HI)........  Rutaceae...........  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Pritchardia lanigera.............  Loulu...............  U.S.A. (HI)........  Arecaceae..........  E                       818           NA           NA

[[Page 64690]]

 
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Schiedea diffusa ssp. macraei....  None................  U.S.A. (HI)........  Caryophyllaceae....  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Schiedea hawaiiensis.............  None................  U.S.A. (HI)........  Caryophyllaceae....  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Stenogyne cranwelliae............  None................  U.S.A. (HI)........  Lamiaceae..........  E                       818           NA           NA
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

* * * * *

    Dated: September 3, 2013.
Rowan W. Gould,
Acting Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 2013-24103 Filed 10-28-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-55-P