ANNOUNCING THE NEW & IMPROVED
Lots of great, updated content and key resources for ornithologists
The Airborne Hunting Act applies to "any contrivance used for flight in the air" and prohibits "harassment" which is defined as "disturb, worry, molest, rally, concentrate, harry, chase, drive, herd, or torment."
Does this mean that ornithologists can't use small unmanned aircraft (SUA) to study birds?
IF YOU HAVE APPLIED FOR A STATE PERMIT TO USE DRONES (A STAND-ALONE PERMIT OR AS PART OF YOUR STATE SCIENTIFIC COLLECTING PERMIT, PLEASE CONTACT THE ORNITHOLOGICAL COUNCIL.
We want to hear about your experience, particularly if you were NOT working collaboratively with a state or federal agency.
Field season is right around the corner! If you haven't already applied for your permits/renewals, do it ASAP.
Ornithologists who want Dept of interior grants may want to consider digging for oil. Dept of Interior grants are now subject to political scrutiny and will be used only to fund Admin-friendly projects.
It's official. No more prosecutions for incidental take of birds protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. The *(&)*& Admin wastes 41 pages explaining why it won't do what it was never going to do anyway...only a matter of time before they deny that this mortality even occurs.
Update 29 Dec - Federal appellate court (Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals) ruled on 27 Dec 2017 in a case pertaining to incidental take of endangered sea turtles and migratory birds by long lining in the swordfish industry that the MBTA *is* a strict liability statute - in other words, that it would apply to incidental take. The score now stands 3-3 as to the federal appellate courts but none of this affects the new DOI policy, which simply means that the Administration will file no new cases pertaining to incidental take. It is hoped that the DOI will not ask the Supreme Court to review this case.
The oil and gas industries and others would have a complete pass for the incidental take of birds protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act should the SECURE American Energy Act (H.R. 4239) become law.
SEC. 207. CLARIFICATION REGARDING LIABILITY UNDER MIGRATORY BIRD TREATY ACT. Section 6 of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (16 U.S.C. 707) is amended by adding at the end of the following: ‘‘(e) This Act shall not be construed to prohibit any activity proscribed by section 2 of this Act that is accidental or incidental to the presence or operation of an otherwise lawful activity.’’.
GOOD NEWS: From the Chronicle on Higher Education, 12/14:
A legislative provision that would have effectively taxed tuition waivers used by graduate students to offset their educational costs will not be in the final tax package in Congress, Bloomberg reports. A House-Senate conference committee met on Wednesday to discuss the compromise bill, which Republican leaders hope to put on President Trump’s desk as soon as possible.
From Inside Higher Ed:
Senate and House negotiators meeting this week to craft compromise tax-reform legislation plan to exclude from a final bill some controversial proposals affecting students and colleges, according to multiple reports.
Lawmakers from the two chambers of Congress agreed to drop provisions that would treat graduate student tuition benefits as taxable income and repeal student loan interest deductions. Both provisions were included in House tax legislation passed last month but left out of a bill that narrowly cleared the Senate Dec. 2.
Also said to be OUT OF THE FINAL BILL: the elimination of student loan interest deductions
The GOP-led House of Representatives is leading attacks on the Endangered Species Act. Get ready to contact your members of Congress.
UPDATE 29 Sept: Another anti-ESA bill has been introduced. Read more here.
One year till the International Ornithological Congress in Vancouver Canada.
Short video highlighting what's coming. Access the website at www.IOCongress2018.com
Please help BirdsCaribbean help its members and partners throughout the Caribbean to restore the birds, their habitats and the local communities. By acting today you can help ensure immediate needs will be met and conservation and science will guide the recovery efforts.
If you are a scientist from any scientific discipline (e.g. ecology, medicine, economics, etc.), and are concerned about global environmental and climate trends, we invite you to become a co-signatory for our in-press Viewpoint article in the journal Bioscience entitled “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity: a second notice” by Ripple et. al. (2017). In doing so, you will be included in the full list of co-signatories in the article’s online supplemental material.
Over 13,000 scientists have signed the letter. If you'd like to add your name, be sure to do by 9/26.
It is no secret that the current U.S. administration has great disdain for regulations. It now looks as though several bird-related regulations - including some that would have affected ornithological research - are now on the scrap heap. Gone are pending regulations on CITES, Migratory Bird Treaty Act, Animal Welfare Act. The bird banding regulatory revisions have been consigned to the long-term action list. Updates to the Wild Bird Conservation Act are still moving forward, as are regulations updating import and export procedures and an increase in permit and other fees.
The 17th supplement to the seventh edition of the Checklist of North America Birds has been published in the Auk.
If you value and support the work of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Forest Service, and other federal natural resource agencies, make your voice heard!
Please share this article with your colleagues, students, friends and family.
Update May 28: The deadline for commenting on Bears Ears National Monument has passed.
ONLY FIVE DAYS LEFT TO COMMENT ON THE POSSIBLE RECISSION OF THE DESIGNATION OF DOZENS OF NATIONAL MONUMENTS. THE DEADLINE IS JULY 10.
Express your views!
In addition to submitting comments, you might also want to send a copy of your comments to your Representative and Senators!
Those planning to use geolocators on songbirds should take note of this critical new research.
Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke (Secretary) recently took action that will delay the issuance of of all planned FY 2017 grants and cooperative agreements in the amount of $100,000 or more. If you are affected by this change (directly, or because you are working under such a grant or cooperative agreement to someone else), please contact the Ornithological Council immediately.
Under the Paperwork Reduction Act, federal agencies must obtain approval from the White House Office of Management and Budget whenever the agency wants to collect information from 10 or more members of the public. That includes permit application forms. Every three years, the agencies must request renewal of the OMB approval and when they do so, the public is afforded a chance to comment on the forms themselves and the burden imposed on those who must use the forms.
The California Department of Fish and Game is overhauling its scientific research permit regulations. If you work in California, here's your chance to have your say.
Not enough hours in the day as it is, and now you need to call your members of Congress ... again and again and again. If only there was some way to know when those calls are most urgently needed....
UPDATE 31 March: Database is up-and-running...and we are running as fast as we can to catch up with the Congress.
Mark the date on your calendar:
OUT OF THE LAB, INTO PUBLIC OFFICE
On Tuesday, March 14th, 314 Action will be holding an online information session for those in the STEM community who are interested in running for public office for the first time. Please fill out the form below if you are interested in attending.
THE MARCH FOR SCIENCE CHAMPIONS PUBLICLY FUNDED AND PUBLICLY COMMUNICATED SCIENCE AS A PILLAR OF HUMAN FREEDOM AND PROSPERITY. WE UNITE AS A DIVERSE, NONPARTISAN GROUP TO CALL FOR SCIENCE THAT UPHOLDS THE COMMON GOOD, AND FOR POLITICAL LEADERS AND POLICYMAKERS TO ENACT EVIDENCE-BASED POLICIES IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST.
Gag orders imposed on federal research agencies. A top nominee asks "“Do we really need government-funded research at all?” At EPA and USDA, all grant and contract funding is on hold. We've been here before (2001-200) and we survived but this time it feels...different...far worse.
The new OSNA Member Portal is now open and available for you to renew your society memberships in the American Ornithological Society, the Association of Field Ornithologists, the Raptor Research Foundation, and the Wilson Ornithological Society. Renewing online is fast and convenient for you and helps the societies to gather information to better serve you.
The Ornithological Council is very pleased to announce the award of two grants for the 2016 funding cycle of the OC Small Grants Program. We congratulate Glenda Denise Hevia of Argentina and Isabel Raymundo Gonzalez of Mexico for undertaking meritorious research projects that promote bird conservation. We are honored to support their work.
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Numerous bird-related regulations appear to be extinct
kwinker - Jul 25 2017 02:03 PM
OC 2014 Small Grants Call for Proposals / Solicitud de Propuestas
caritogg - Oct 30 2015 09:29 AM
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OC 2016 Small Grants Call for Proposals / Solicitud de Propuestas
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OC 2014 Small Grants Call for Proposals / Solicitud de Propuestas
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Sue Haig - Aug 25 2015 08:56 AM
GOP trying to block enforcement of Migratory Bird Treaty Act via appropriations bills
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