Final Designation of Critical Habitat for Black Abalone Final Biological Report
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Final Designation of Critical Habitat for Black Abalone Final Biological Report
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  • Description:
    Section 4 of the Federal Endangered Species Act requires the designation of critical habitat for threatened and endangered species. This report contains a biological assessment in support of a final critical habitat designation for the endangered black abalone (Haliotis cracherodii). A critical habitat review team (CHRT) consisting of seven Federal biologists was convened to evaluate critical habitat for the black abalone. The CHRT was tasked with compiling and assessing the best available data to identify habitat features essential to the conservation of the species, determine the geographical area occupied by the species, delineate specific areas within the geographical area occupied that contain at least one essential habitat feature that may require special management considerations or protection, and evaluate the conservation value of each specific area for black abalone. The CHRT determined that the geographical area occupied by black abalone ranges from the Del Mar Landing Ecological Reserve (just south of Gualala), Sonoma County, California (CA) to Dana Point, Orange County CA, including several offshore islands. Within the geographical area occupied, 20 specific areas were delineated. The CHRT also identified three presently unoccupied areas that may be essential to the conservation of black abalone, but at this time the CHRT did not have enough information to determine whether any of these areas are essential for this species’ conservation. This report summarizes the available data on black abalone presence and distribution for each specific area and the CHRT’s evaluation of the conservation value for each area. The assessment and findings provided in this report are used in conjunction with the economic analyses to support NMFS’ final critical habitat designation.
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