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    128 articles in this category

    1. APHIS releases final guidance on field studies

      Author: Laura Bies

      The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) released a policy document, “Research Involving Free-living Wild Species In Their Natural Habitat," to provide guidance regarding field studies and the Animal Welfare Act. 

      • 0 comments
      • 979 views
    2. Get ready for field season – apply now for your permits!

      Author: Laura Bies

      Field season is right around the corner! If you haven't already applied for your permits/renewals, do it ASAP.

      • 1 comment
      • 480 views
    3. Thinking Critically About "A Vision for the Society for Ornithology"

      Author: John Marzluff

      Are you aware of the consequences to governance and editorial boards for American ornithology that would occur if our current societies merged into a single Society for Ornithology? Are corporate leaders appropriate board members for a scientific society? Do you think our financial situations warrant an immediate action toward the new society? Please take the time to think critically about what our pending decisions may mean for American ornithology by reading the following thought piece.

      • 5 comments
      • 5,890 views
    4. Editor's Choice: The Condor::Ground-Level Artificial Lights Disrupt Bird Migration

      Author: AOUCOSPUBS.ORG

      Ornithologists have long been aware that lights on skyscrapers and cell towers can disorient migrating birds, but research forthcoming in The Condor: Ornithological Applications demonstrates that even ground-level artificial lights can affect birds passing overhead at night. The study's authors used microphones to record the nocturnal flight calls and discovered that ground-level illumination equivalent to a porch light was enough to alter migrating birds' behavior. Their findings underscore importance of studying the consequences for wildlife when human activities alter the natural environment.

      • 0 comments
      • 1,327 views
    5. GOP trying to block enforcement of Migratory Bird Treaty Act via appropriations bills

      The House has passed an appropriations bill (H.R. 2578) for the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and Related Agencies with one unbelievable rider - it "enjoins" the use of appropriated funds for use in prosecuting or holding liable any corporation or person for a violation of section 2(a) of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

       

      UPDATE 8 JULY: GREAT NEWS: The Duncan amendment is no more. It was removed from the CJS appropriations bill weeks ago and was never approved by the House Interior appropriations subcommittee. It was thought that he would try to introduce it when the full House considered the Interior appropriations bill, but he has not done so. There's more bird-blues on Capitol Hill still to come, including a provision that blocks ESA-listing of the Greater Sage-Grouse and Duncan's H.R. 493, which would amend the MBTA to preclude incidental take. Fortunately, H.R.493 is not moving and has few co-sponsors as Congress heads into the long August recess. If things change, we'll let you know so check back often.

       

      Read full article for more info.

      • 2 comments
      • 10,497 views
    6. BirdsCaribbean and the Bahamas National Trust need our help!

      Author: Ornithological Council

      Please help BirdsCaribbean and the Bahamas National Trust to help birds survive, and clean up and restore vital habitats. They need funds to carry out bird surveys, provide supplemental feeding, repair and replace damaged equipment and infrastructure, and restore their national parks on these islands.. 

      • 0 comments
      • 936 views
    7. USFWS Draft Environmental Statement on MBTA incidental take rule published

      Author: Laura Bies, Executive Director, Ornithological Council

      This news and analysis are provided by the Ornithological Council, a consortium supported by 11 ornithological societies. Join or renew your membership in your ornithological society if you value the services these societies provide to you, including OrnithologyExchange and the Ornithological Council.

      Late last week, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service published a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) analyzing their proposed rule to limit the reach of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act by exempting incidental take (or unintentional killing or harming) of birds.

      The Service announced their proposed rule in January, in an attempt to provide more regulatory certainty to public, industries, states, tribes and other stakeholders. This DEIS assesses the possible effects of their proposed rule, as well as two other possible actions - or alternatives - on migratory birds, other environmental resources, and the economy.

      Read more....

      • 0 comments
      • 2,589 views
    8. APHIS accepting comments on field study definition

      Author: Laura Bies

      USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) released a proposed policy document, “Research Involving Free-living Wild Species In Their Natural Habitat,” to assist research institutions in determining whether an activity involving free-living wild animals in their natural habitat meets the regulatory definition of “field study.” The proposed policy describes criteria that research facilities could use to identify activities that are invasive, harmful, or that materially alter animal behavior. 

      • 0 comments
      • 1,194 views
    9. USFWS launches new online permit system

      Author: Laura Bies

      The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today launched a new online permit system that will allow applicants to submit, pay for, and track their permit applications online. 

      • 0 comments
      • 1,671 views
    10. The Ornithological Council is updating the Guidelines to the Use of Wild Birds in Research - and we need your help!

      Author: Laura Bies

      The Guidelines to the Use of Wild Birds in Research, published by the Ornithological Council, is a resource reference used by the federal animal welfare agencies and your Institutional Animal Care and Use Committees. Help the Ornithological Council keep it current!

      • 0 comments
      • 6,567 views
    11. Get ready for field season - apply now for your permits!

      Author: Laura Bies

      Field season is right around the corner! If you haven't already applied for your permits/renewals, do it ASAP.

      • 0 comments
      • 1,187 views
    12. USFWS finalizes revocation of MBTA incidental take rule, asks for comments on new permit system

      Author: Laura Bies

      The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service published the final rule officially revoking the Trump administration’s regulation that interpreted the Migratory Bird Treaty Act as only applying to intentional killing of birds

      • 0 comments
      • 1,025 views
    13. The Ornithological Council and partners, including the National Academies, to hold workshop on the unique welfare challenges of wildlife research

      Author: Laura Bies

      The Ornithological Council is working with partners, including the Institute for Laboratory Animal Research within the National Academies, to hold a virtual workshop about animal welfare and wildlife research. 

      • 0 comments
      • 1,778 views
    14. USDA releases proposed animal welfare regulation for birds

      Author: Laura Bies

      USDA APHIS has released for public comment new regulations that would establish standards governing the humane handling, care, treatment, and transportation of birds not bred for research under the Animal Welfare Act.

      • 0 comments
      • 1,701 views
    15. The Ornithological Council releases another update to its Import Guide

      Author: Laura Bies

      The OC has released an updated version of its Import Guide, a key resources for those importing, exporting, or transporting ornithological samples and specimens.  

      • 0 comments
      • 68 views
    16. Join the flock! OC reinvigorates supporting memberships

      Author: Laura Bies

      Now your organization - of any size - can show its support for the Ornithological Council by becoming a supporting member. Join the flock today!

      • 0 comments
      • 163 views
    17. Confidential survey for bird banders

      Author: Ellen Paul

      Help us help you by answering a short survey about your experiences in obtaining banding permits.

      • 0 comments
      • 2,730 views
    18. New U.S. Federal Policy on Access to Publicly Funded Research - Publications and Data

      Author: Ellen Paul

      The White House has ordered federal agencies to develop plans to increase public access to federally funded research, including literature and data. How will this affect you and your scientific society? Read on...

      • 0 comments
      • 3,119 views
    19. MBTA Permits: Practical suggestions for the ornithologist

      Author: Ellen Paul

      If you need an MBTA permit, the time to apply is...NOW! Do you need one? What should you do to make the process go quickly and smoothly?

      • 0 comments
      • 6,648 views
    20. The Condor: Ornithological Applications:: New Studies - Published Open Access - Highlight Energy Development’s Impact on Birds

      Author: AOUCOSPUBS.ORG

      New Studies Highlight Energy Development’s Impact on Birds

       

      Ornithology journal The Condor: Ornithological Applications is publishing a Special Section of open access articles highlighting the impact that energy development is having on North America’s bird populations.

      • 0 comments
      • 1,555 views
    21. YOU DID IT! TUITION REMISSION WILL NOT BE TAXED!

      Author: Ornithological Council

      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

      • 0 comments
      • 2,584 views
    22. Serious threat to Migratory Bird Treaty Act

      Author: Ornithological Council

      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.’’.

      • 0 comments
      • 3,512 views
    23. DOI green lights preventable mass avian mortality

      Author: Ornithological Council

      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.

      • 0 comments
      • 5,352 views
    24. New DOI Policy steers grants to Administration priorities

      Author: Ornithological Council

      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.

      • 0 comments
      • 1,455 views
    25. Thinking of using SUA to study birds in the U.S.? Read this first!

      Author: Ornithological Council

      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. UPDATE 27 March 2018: A PowerPoint explaining all U.S. laws that pertain to the use of drones to study wildlife has been posted on BIRDNET.

      UPDATE JAN 2019: AS A RESULT OF THE ORNITHOLOGICAL COUNCIL'S EFFORTS, THE U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE WILL BE ISSUING A NEW REGULATION  - PROBABLY IN THE THIRD QUARTER OF 2019 - TO ALLOW THE USE OF DRONES TO STUDY BIRDS. Of course, as the shutdown drags on, the work needed to develop this new regulation will be delayed.

       

      • 0 comments
      • 9,367 views
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