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A Bill for Beaks

June 20, 2008

It’s not my intention to step on the shoes of the excellent DC Birding Blog, who usually keeps quite abreast on matters of bird-related political news, but I thought this bit of information could use as wide a distribution as we in the bird blog scene could muster.

With the administration’s recent push to open America’s coastlines to oil exploration it is tempting to be discouraged at the seeming lack of pro-wildlife legislation. But fear not, it’s not all bad news. The American Bird Conservancy reports that Representatives Ron Kind (D-WI) and Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD) have introduced a bill seeking to reauthorize the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act (NMBCA) at a significantly higher funding level. The mission of the NMBCA is as follows:

NMBCA supports partnership programs to conserve birds in the United States, Canada, Latin America, and the Caribbean, where approximately five billion birds of over 500 species, including some of the most endangered birds in North America, spend their winters. Projects include activities that benefit bird populations, such as habitat restoration, research and monitoring, law enforcement, and outreach and education.

Noble goals I think every birder can get behind. Last year Congress appropriated $4.5 million to the NMBCA. The new bill appropriates $20 million by 2015, and requires matching funds from the Fish and Wildlife Service.

As we all know, this bill is still a long way from becoming the law of the land (a little on how that works), but there’s some thing you can do, which gets me to the crux of this post. Contact your Senator-congressman right here and urge them to support this bill. I’ve already let the honorable David Price from the NC’s fine 4th district know.

Let yours know now, here it is again.

And again.

Go to it.

One Comment
  1. John permalink
    June 20, 2008 9:32 am

    It’s a good program. I am not sure where the F&W matching funds are going to come from without an additional appropriation. They’re pretty strapped as it is. If it doesn’t get passed this year, there is always a chance of getting it through next year, though it will have to do so without Gilchrest as a cosponsor since he lost his primary to a right-wing challenger.

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