Removal of Johnson's Seagrass From the Federal List of Threatened and Endangered Species
We, NOAA Fisheries, have issued a final rule to remove Johnson's seagrass (Halophila johnsonii) from the Federal List of Threatened and Endangered Species. To correspond with this action, we have also removed the critical habitat designation for Johnson's seagrass. These actions are based on newly obtained genetic data that demonstrate that Johnson's seagrass is not a unique taxon but rather a clone of an Indo-Pacific species, Halophila ovalis. Therefore, Johnson's seagrass does not meet the statutory definition of a species and does not qualify for listing under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).