USFWS proposes migratory game bird hunting regulations

By Emily Ronis

Proposed regulations would govern the harvest of migratory game birds, including the woodcock (Scolopax minor), during the 2019-20 hunting season. ©Rodney Campbell

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed preliminary regulations for migratory game bird hunting for the 2019-20 season.

The proposed rule is the first step in the annual process of setting harvest regulations for migratory game birds, including woodcock (Scolopax minor), Canada geese (Branta canadensis) and wood ducks (Aix sponsa), under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

The rule also announces that the Service Migratory Bird Regulations Committee will hold an open meeting on July 10 to address preliminary concerns with the proposed regulations. The committee will also meet Oct. 16-17 to review information on current statuses of migratory game bird populations. The Atlantic, Mississippi, Central and Pacific Flyway Councils will hold separate meetings through August and September. Flyway Councils were established to account for regional differences and members help develop state, provincial and federal hunting regulations.

The rule also requests proposals for special regulations on Federal Indian reservations, submitted no later than Dec. 1. USFWS works with tribes to recognize “their reserved hunting rights, and for some tribes, recognition of their authority to regulate hunting by both tribal and nontribal members throughout their reservations.”

Public comments and more information on the proposed general harvest strategy and regulations will be accepted until July 18.

For more information, read the proposed rule in the Federal Register.

Emily Ronis is a Policy Communication Intern at The Wildlife Society. Read more of Emily's articles.

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