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Federal Court Overturns FWS’s 30-year Eagle Take Rule

Cara J

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A U.S. district court in California ruled this month that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) failed to comply with the National Environment Policy Act (NEPA) for their revised regulations regarding permitted takes of bald and golden eagles in 2013. Prior to this ruling, the revision increased the maximum duration of programmatic permits allowing for the incidental take of the eagles during otherwise lawful activities from five years to thirty years. Background FWS issued regulations authorizing the limited take of bald and golden eagles in 2009. The Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act (BGEPA) prohibits the take of eagles without a permit. The act defines take as “to pursue, shoot, shoot at, poison, wound, kill, capture, trap, collect, destroy, molest, or disturb.” The 2009 rule allowed FWS to issue permits for the incidental programmatic, or recurring, take of eagles. The permits included safeguards to ensure that any permitted activities were consistent with the preservation of eagle populations. Permits were granted for a period of five years, at which point permittees could submit a request for renewal. FWS published an environmental assessment of the rule that acknowledged these programmatic permits would “indirectly result in impacts to habitat from loss, fragmentation, [...]


Read more: http://wildlife.org/federal-court-overturns-fwss-30-year-eagle-take-rule/

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