LAWS > MIGRATORY BIRD
TREATY ACT Overview...
- Migratory Bird Treaty
- This Act, officially passed
in 1918, is the nation's oldest conservation law and provides
federal protection for migratory birds. Under the Act it is unlawful
to take, import, export, possess, buy, sell, purchase, or barter
any migratory bird. Feathers or other parts, nests, eggs, and
products made from migratory birds are also covered by the Act.
Take is defined as pursuing, hunting, shooting, poisoning, wounding,
killing, capturing, trapping, or collecting.
- Migratory bird hunting regulations,
established by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, allow the
taking, during designated seasons, of ducks, geese, doves, rail,
woodcock, and some other species. In addition, permits may be
granted for various non-commercial activities involving migratory
birds and some commercial activities involving captive-bred migratory
- Individuals or organizations
may be fined up to $5,000 and $10,000, respectively, and may
face up to six months imprisonment for misdemeanor violations
of the Act. Felony violations may result in fines of up to $250,000
for individuals. $500,000 for organizations, and up to two years
- States Rights
- States and Territories, by
suitable legislation, are not prevented from making or enforcing
laws or regulations which give further protection to migratory
birds, their nests, and eggs within their respective borders.
The provisions of the Act apply equally to Federal and non-Federal
- Michigan Penalties
- State penalties for an individual
found guilty of "taking" a mourning dove (a misdemeanor)
in Michigan is punishable by a fine of not less than $100.00
or more than $500.00 or imprisonment for not more than 90 days,
or both, and the costs of prosecution. In addition to the penalties
provided for violation, the convicted shall reimburse the state
for the value of the animal, $100.00 per dove.
Source: United States Fish and
Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior, DOE Office of Environmental
Policy and Guidance, Michigan Compiled Laws, Michigan Department
of Natural Resources.