The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announce the availability of a Draft Compatibility Determination for ATV Use on Pond Creek NWR for public review and comment. The public comment period will extend from March 17 through April 17 , 2015 .
A compatibility determination is the end result of a process whereby the Refuge Manager reviews a proposed use on a refuge and determines whether the use is compatible with the purpose for which the refuge was established. If determined to be compatible, then the use may be permitted. If the use is determined incompatible, then it is not permitted to occur on the Refuge.
This compatibility determination addresses seasonal ATV use by the public. ATV use is not a priority public use. However, ATV use can facilitate public involvement in priority public uses such as hunting and trapping. ATV use is an existing use on Pond Creek National Wildlife Refuge.
Currently, there are 24 ATV trails located throughout the refuge which total 31. 6 miles of trails . Three of these trails (1.9 miles) are open year round to provide access for fishing and the remaining 21 trails ( 29. 7 miles ) are open only during the refuge hunting season (September – January).
The interested public ha s until April , 2015 to provide comments in writing to Refuge Headquarters/ Visitor Center. Comments may be sent by fax to (870) 364 – 3757 or by e – mail to Michael_Stroeh@fws.gov. Comments received will be reviewed and, if appropriate, incorporated into the Final Compatibility Determination, which is expected by the summer of 2015