Currently the United States House of Representatives as well as the United State Senate have 2 bills that are very similar to make some changes to the Migratory Bird Treaty. The goal of these bills is to provide the states a formal extension for duck hunting season to end on January 31st of each year versus the current framework which stipulates that hunting ends on “the last Sunday of January.” As well, both bills would provide veterans and youth an extra duck hunting weekend each year. The House bill is H.R. 6013 and was introduced by Rep. Bishop and Rep. Bergman and the Senate Bill is S. 2942 introduced by Sen. Hyde-Smith of Mississippi.
This bill will be discussed next week at the House Committee on Natural Resources and several individuals will be in attendance to testify at the hearing. Individuals can tune in to the livestream of the hearing once it starts HERE on Tuesday July 17th, 2018.
House Committee on Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop stated, “The rules and regulations impacting hunting seasons should be concise and give states flexibility to manage their wildlife resources. This bill will allow states to more effectively manage their waterfowl hunting season, bolster our nation’s conservation efforts, and give hunters more opportunity to enjoy their days chasing our abundant duck and geese populations. The North American model of conservation is a true success story for both the wildlife and the conservationist and it’s up to us to continue to celebrate this fact by providing more flexibility to wildlife management regulations. I look forward to working with my colleagues and stakeholders in shepherding this bill through the Committee.”
Rep. Bergman from Michigan stated, “As both a veteran and a grandfather, I wholeheartedly support providing our youth, active duty military, and veterans with the opportunity for extended duck hunting days. It’s critically important to ensure future generations are exposed to outdoor recreation and enduring traditions of northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula,”
HuntingLife reached out to Ducks Unlimited and they are working closely with state and federal partners to clarify language in all duck hunting regulations to ensure consistency with science bases Adaptive Harvest Management process. Ducks Unlimited will offer up testimony next week on Tuesday, July 17th, 2018 at the hearing.
Conservation and hunting regulations nationwide are based on science and each state will still have the ability to set limits and hunting dates within the confines of the federal regulations. We encourage readers to reach out to their Representatives in Congress as well as their Senators to encourage the passage of these bills and ensure that the language of these bills include language to encourage science-based management of our migratory birds. We are especially fond of the portion of H.R. 6013 that allows for an extra weekend to take youth and veterans hunting. We feel this is an important step to encourage individuals to get more people introduced to hunting.