Tuesday, February 14, 2006

The bald eagle is closer to being delisted

(February 13, 2006) The bald eagle is closer to being delisted. The USFWS issued guidelines on how the bald eagle should be protected by landowners and others, once it's no longer safeguarded as a "threatened" species. There are proposals which prohibit disturbing the bald eagle, which include disruption of its breeding, feeding or sheltering, which could cause death or injury to its young, or the death of eaglets due to nest abandonment.

Officials said the action could lead to the removal of the bald eagle from the "threatened" species list within the next year or so.

Bald eagles were officially declared an endangered species in 1967 in all areas of the United States south of the 40th parallel, under a law that preceded the Endangered Species Act of 1973.

Even if the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service removes the bald eagle from the "threatened" species list, it will still be protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. The Bald Eagle Protection Act prohibits the take, transport, sale, barter, trade, import and export, and possession of eagles, making it illegal for anyone to collect eagles and eagle parts, nests, or eggs without a permit. Possession of a feather or other body parts of a bald eagle is a felony with a fine of up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment, although federally recognized Native Americans are able to possess these emblems which are traditional in their culture. The bald eagle is still listed as "threatened" in the United States.

The eagle in the picture is the first one of the year for Bird TLC, BE 06-01. It was shot and broke his wing on landing. As of yesterday we are up to 4 eagles admitted this year. You decide.

For more info on bald eagles check out http://www.baldeagleinfo.com/


John said...

It's clear to me that the bald eagle needs some kind of legal protection even if it is not on the endangered species list. The stories of shot eagles that you post here are one reason - that should not be acceptable. And there are still development issues, especially near urban areas. In this area, we have housing developments impinging on eagle breeding grounds. Without continued protection bald eagles might land back on the endangered species list.

Rexroth's Daughter said...

I agree with John. The reason Bald Eagles have survived to flourish is result of their legally protected status. Such protection should continue or they will likely decline. It's not like we're any smarter than we were 40 years ago. Delisting them just sounds like inviting open season on them.

Mike said...

I agree with all of you. The fact that the Bald Eagle is flourishing speaks very well of its current legal protection. When the murder rate in NYC went down, no one argued that it was time to take homocide off the books as illegal! (Maybe that analogy is a little strained...)

Dave, did you submit this to I and the Bird?

Cindy said...

I've decided even before reading your post the delisting Bald Eagles can only lead to trouble. How about stiffer penalities for those that disturb/harass and shoot them. (and not only with firearms, but photographers that invade Alaska every year to get that perfect eagle shot).
I know where at least 3 active eagle nests are, not far from home. I keep the locations to myself. (Although for some yummy smoked salmon, I may tell you.. LOL)
j/k.. so sad to see yet another eagle shot. I'll never understand that mentality- nor do I want to.

Dave said...

I agree John. The laws also need better enforcement. USF&W and ADF&G do a great job with what they have, but they can use more help.

RD, are we any smarter than 40 years ago? I do think that the laws should be strictly enforced no matter what species of bird is injured. (How's Gus?)

Long time no see Mike. I submitted mine late to Amy. Here's hoping she still post it. She has a simular post on her blog.

Cindy, check out this article in the Anchorage Daily News about feeding wild eagles. http://www.adn.com/news/alaska/ap_alaska/story/7449643p-7359938c.html
I think you'll like it.

Cindy said...

yep, I like it. Baiting birds for photos is totally unethical, at least in my opinion.
Thanks for sharing the link!

P.M.Bryant said...

I'm not familiar with the details, but if the eagle is thriving now and in no danger of extinction, then it is certainly appropriate to remove it from the threatened species list, I believe.

If that leads to troubles in the future, then it will have to be returned to the list.

Of course, with the current administration, that would be extremely difficult to accomplish, even for so charismatic a species. But they will likely (hopefully!) be out of power by such a point.

Dave said...

I believe it would take more to un-do taking the eagle off the list if things turned for the worse. As the national symbol I feel it should be allowed extra protection. There's enough man made stuff to make life more challenging for them.