This announcement is a positive step forward for maintaining the integrity of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act
UPDATE: The Biden Administration finalized this proposed rule on September 29, 2021, restoring important protections for migratory bird species. The following is our original post about the proposal announced in May 2021.
The Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership applauds Interior Secretary Haaland and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for actions announced today to restore the integrity of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.
Since 1918, the MBTA has been the foundation to conserving the nation’s migratory birds, from warblers to waterfowl. It has provided clarity to industry, including the oil and gas and wind sectors, about allowable activities and provided reasonable exceptions for “incidental take”—the accidental death of birds.
Yet the previous administration severely weakened the law, eliminating any incentive for the regulated community to take prudent actions to avoid killing birds. Moving forward, sportsmen and sportswomen look forward to working with the administration and industry to continue America’s remarkable track record of migratory bird conservation.
“At a time when migratory birds are in serious decline, we see this as a positive step forward for not only maintaining the integrity of this bedrock conservation law, but also removing additional threats to species facing the impacts of climate change and other habitat stressors,” says Whit Fosburgh, president and CEO of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. “To effectively halt and reverse declines of migratory birds and reduce the risk of future endangered species act listings, we believe it is critical that the Migratory Bird Treaty Act remain an effective tool for addressing foreseeable and avoidable threats to birds.”