Avian Diversity

Bird Focused Additions to Policy Brief Series

The Policy Brief Series, TWS’s go-to resource for federal policies and programs impacting wildlife, welcomes three new additions with an avian focus. Members of The Wildlife Society can now readily access information regarding the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, Lacey Act, and North American Wetlands Conservation Act.

Download the policy briefs to learn more about these programs and how they were first enacted to protect North American bird populations.

The Lacey Act, the oldest national wildlife protection law in the U.S. was created in 1900 to conserve native bird populations by criminalizing the transportation of illegally obtained game across state lines. The Lacey Act continues to regulate the sale of protected species and prevents the spread of invasive species.

Declining bald eagle populations in the early 20th century led to the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. The act criminalizes the take of bald and golden eagles including their parts, nests, and eggs. Provisions in this act along with the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and Endangered Species Act enabled the bald eagle population to rebound in the lower 48 states.

Waterfowl populations in North America reached historic lows in the 1980s due in part to decreasing wetland habitat. To protect, restore, and enhance wetlands, Congress passed the North American Wetland Conservation Act (NAWCA) in 1989. NAWCA provides grants for wetlands conservation in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.

The Government Affairs team is working on additional policy briefs on both American and Canadian conservation policy. The complete Policy Brief Series, along with other policy resources, can be accessed at wildlife.org/policy.

Header Image: Image Credit: Jim Mathisen, USFWS