Author Topic: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild  (Read 3523 times)

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Offline Alison

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Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« on: November 25, 2009, 20:47 »
Two guilty of removing falcons from cliffside nests

GOLD BEACH – Two of three Oregon men indicted by a Curry County grand jury for illegally taking young peregrine falcons from nests from the headlands of Port Orford have been convicted and are scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 11. The third has asked for a jury trial.

Bert J. Loessberg, 53, Eugene, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to felony first-degree theft and a wildlife law violation in a plea bargain which saw a second wildlife law violation, two criminal trespass charges and a charge of harassing wildlife dismissed.

Judge Jesse Margolis told Loessberg that the maximum sentence for the theft conviction is five years in prison and $125,000 fine and the maximum sentence for the wildlife violation, unlawfully removing a peregrine falcon from its natural habitat, is one year in jail and a $6,250 fine.
 
Margolis asked if there was a legal excuse for what he did. Loessberg’s attorney, Robert Schrank, replied: “No legal excuse. There was a valid permit that was never used.”

Wayne A. Skankey, 51, Beaverton, pleaded guilty on Sept. 25 of first-degree theft as a misdemeanor and criminal trespass.

Both Loessberg and Skankey are scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 11.

Clinton Paul Rand, 35, Terrebone, pleaded not guilty to all charges and a three-day trial was scheduled to begin April 13.

Rand’s attorney, Jim Gardner, asked for trial to be set but to allow negotiations to continue until the Dec. 11 sentencing for the other two, but Margolis refused.

The judge said that under the court’s rules, once the pleas were entered trial would be scheduled and Rand would face a jury on all charges or plead guilty to them.

“We’ve done a lot of attempts to negotiate,” Gardner said and entered not guilty pleas and asked for the trial dates.

The three were indicted on charges of felony first-degree theft, the theft of a peregrine falcon, removed from habitat, on May 30. The habitat is reportedly about 30 to 40 feet down a 200 foot cliff.

The three were also charged with three Class A misdemeanors, including removal of wildlife in violation of permit, failure to make timely notice to ODFW of intent to make a nest entry and harassing wildlife.

They were also charged with two counts each of second degree criminal trespass for entering two properties on King Street in Port Orford to get access to the falcons.

The three were arraigned on Aug. 31.

Similar charges against Zayne J. Lees, 60, Powell Butte, were dismissed in court by Curry County District Attorney Everett Dial on Sept. 11.


http://www.currypilot.com/20091125114276/News/Local-News/Two-guilty-of-removing-falcons-from-cliffside-nests

I'd like to see them get the maximum penalty -- but of course it won't happen.




Offline Elaine L

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2009, 14:39 »
I expect you are right, Alison.  In my expererience, very few people get even close to the maximum penalty.  So, I wonder what the minimum penalty is?  Typically, it is only a few hundred dollars, and this is all the suffering these barbarians ever have to deal with.

Offline allikat

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2009, 21:54 »
I have no idea why one would want to do this.....this just makes me so angry I can hardly speak.  When can some humans start to respect nature?

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2009, 23:15 »
I don't recall the details of what is permissable at the US federal level and certainly not at the state level, but it is my understanding that taking peregrines from the wild is permissable.  Its my assumption (perhaps erroneously) that permits are still required but I don't know all the details.  The point being, that could influence the penalties handed down in the end.

Offline allikat

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2009, 20:43 »
Sad, sad, sad..... It's permissable to remove endangered species?  I have no comment.

Offline Alison

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2009, 22:06 »
Sad, sad, sad..... It's permissable to remove endangered species?  I have no comment.

In certain states only, a limited number of permits have been issued. Many states have now removed peregrines from the endangered list, making them vulnerable to so many more hazards -- as if they did not have enough challenges already.  >:(

Offline Alison

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2009, 19:57 »
Florida has now approved permits to take a limited number of peregrines from the wild for falconry:  >:(

FWC Approves Rule To Allow Peregrine Falcons For Falconry

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service determines the number of falcons that may be taken over a broad range of states. It is estimated fewer than five falcons will be allocated to Florida in 2010. Under the new rule, falconers must receive a permit for the take of peregrine falcons for falconry. The FWC will randomly select applications and issue permits annually based on the number allotted to the state. Priority for receiving a permit will be given to Florida residents.

Peregrine populations plummeted because of the use of DDT since the 1940s in the United States. After DDT use was restricted in the 1970s, populations significantly increased. The USFWS took the peregrine off the endangered species list in 1999, and the FWC delisted the peregrine falcon in June 2009, making it one of conservation’s greatest success stories. Today, scientists estimate there are at least 3,100 breeding pairs in the United States.

“This is a historic moment for falconers, and we strongly approve staff’s recommendation,” said Eric Edwards of the Florida Falconers Association and North American Falconers Association. “It has been a privilege working with FWC staff through this process.”

The peregrine is a highly valued bird by falconers for its nearly 200-mph dives for prey. Falcons have been used by people for hunting for more than 1,000 years.

“Falconers contributed to the successful conservation of the peregrine by providing birds for captive breeding so peregrines could be reintroduced,” said Robin Boughton, the FWC’s avian coordinator. “Many falconers will now have the opportunity to again use the birds in the sport of falconry.”

Seven speakers, including members of groups such as the Florida Falconry Association, North American Falconers Association, Audubon of Florida and Defenders of Wildlife, spoke at the meeting.

“Audubon views the peregrine as an iconic species, and we have concerns regarding lack of monitoring in Florida to help ensure no future decline in this species,” said Julie Wraithmell of Audubon of Florida. “We hope the Commission will help promote conservation of the species by funding monitoring projects.”

http://www.fosterfollynews.com/news/2009Dec10FWCapprovesruletoallowperegrinefalcons.php

Offline carly

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #7 on: December 18, 2009, 05:26 »
 I just hate reading these articles and every time I check my google alerts on falcons I seem to see more of them these days as every state seems to be allowing this.

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2009, 12:07 »
As I recall the same concerns came up when the US government decided to de-list rather than down-list the peregrine nationally.


For those who aren't sure, this is the (perhaps) oversimplified difference between the two ...
delist - remove at-risk status entirely - does not require much of anything unless the states include them on their at-risk lists - happend in the US
downlist - downgrade from endangered to threatened - requires continued monitoring etc at national and state levels - this is what happened in Canada

Offline allikat

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2009, 13:52 »
So in other words....peregrines, in the us or all the above ?, should still be in the downlist category?

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #10 on: December 18, 2009, 16:32 »
The question is, can a species that was virtually extinct thirty years ago and which was saved only through captive-breeding and countless hours of monitoring/rescues/releases by recovery projects in virtually every state and province in Canada and US can be considered endangered one day and with the stroke of a pen suddenly not be at risk at all.  Since it removes national protections/oversight and the need/requirement for same, will we find out there is a population decline when it suddenly is dipping toward local extirpation again and then it becomes endangered again?  What's the point of having intermediate at risk categories then?

As for captures from the wild - not as easy as one might think, at least by ethical falconers.  Can't touch them in the nest as that violates migratory bird act (international) and probably most states/provinces have protections for nestsites.  So have to catch them on the wing ... unless you know what you are doing, not easy to do, especially not easy to do and not injure the bird - and injuring the bird would violate your permit - and yes, you have to be licenced/permitted to be a falconer/own falcons (as I recall). 

I'm not sure about wild sourcing of peregrines for falconry (or heck, any other raptor species), when there are captive-bred birds which can be purchased as chicks which can make it much easier to acclimate to human companionship (and yes, to peregrines, we are their companion animals).  An adult or subadult peregrine can be attitudinal and uncooperative all of its life - and its not like they don't take off on their "owners", they do all the time, all falconry birds can potentially, it just depends on the individual birds' relationship with their human.  I will say that I have only rarely met a falconer that wasn't devoted to their birds and who treat them with the utmost of respect and adoration.

Offline carly

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2009, 17:29 »
I wondered about that too especially in relation to Ontario.  We had a dismal year last year here with multiple nest failures and falcons not nesting at all.  Lack of males is a huge problem here, it's not just something I noticed - everyone involved in the PF programs noted it as we have a few sites where there have been females for 2 years but no males have shown up at all - or one male trying to service 2 nests and both failed.

Also I read the MNR reports and they admit that in central Ontario the PF has not repopulated at all - zero, nada in an area that used to at one time have many, many nests so I'm perplexed by it all.  12 nest sites in Toronto, with only 5 that produced young is not in my mind a success story.  I know you can't determine a grade based on one bad year but when I read the reports in some of the US states, they are leaps and bounds ahead of us in terms of population success rates.

I wonder what the criteria goal was that determined the listing.


Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #12 on: December 18, 2009, 17:41 »
I'm sure I have a couple of articles and related rebuttals to the delisting around here somewhere in pdf format, will see about finding and posting links to them ....

Offline carly

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2009, 17:53 »
I'm sure I have a couple of articles and related rebuttals to the delisting around here somewhere in pdf format, will see about finding and posting links to them ....

Thanks TPC, much appreciated.

Offline Alison

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #14 on: December 18, 2009, 19:33 »
I completely agree with your thoughts on delisting, TPC. I'd be interested in reading the articles you mention.

Offline allikat

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2009, 23:48 »
I would be interesting in reading those articles as well TPC! 

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #16 on: February 03, 2010, 09:17 »
this story from Montana is interesting. I helped Mark Nash a few years ago ,trying to stop this ,by sending a petition world wide.
what about our peregrines.

If a wild banded bird is caught, I believe they are required to notify the national banding office who I believe is suppose to notify the bander.  Since most states require a state permit (not sure if there is a national one required as well) to take falcons from the wild, I believe they (the state) has to be notified if a banded bird is taken as well.  Question I guess is how good is the reporting system ...

A falconer in the UK once told me that falconry birds stay because they decide to, not because they have to.  Not sure if that is just the way he approaches falconry but it does make a kind of sense ... but I'm not a falconer so its just anecdotal ...

Offline Alison

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #17 on: February 05, 2010, 16:58 »
If a wild banded bird is caught, I believe they are required to notify the national banding office who I believe is suppose to notify the bander.  Since most states require a state permit (not sure if there is a national one required as well) to take falcons from the wild, I believe they (the state) has to be notified if a banded bird is taken as well.  Question I guess is how good is the reporting system ...

I'm not sure about the notification part, but it was my understanding that they were not permitted to take chicks or juvies who are banded.

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #18 on: February 05, 2010, 17:20 »
If a wild banded bird is caught, I believe they are required to notify the national banding office who I believe is suppose to notify the bander.  Since most states require a state permit (not sure if there is a national one required as well) to take falcons from the wild, I believe they (the state) has to be notified if a banded bird is taken as well.  Question I guess is how good is the reporting system ...

I'm not sure about the notification part, but it was my understanding that they were not permitted to take chicks or juvies who are banded. 

You probably know the legislation better than I do Alison, its something I always have on my "to do" list, but not "done" yet.  :-\

Offline Alison

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #19 on: February 05, 2010, 20:58 »
If a wild banded bird is caught, I believe they are required to notify the national banding office who I believe is suppose to notify the bander.  Since most states require a state permit (not sure if there is a national one required as well) to take falcons from the wild, I believe they (the state) has to be notified if a banded bird is taken as well.  Question I guess is how good is the reporting system ...

I'm not sure about the notification part, but it was my understanding that they were not permitted to take chicks or juvies who are banded. 

You probably know the legislation better than I do Alison, its something I always have on my "to do" list, but not "done" yet.  :-\

I am no expert on this -- I remember posting a story from another state earlier in the year, but can't find it now. It mentioned that taking banded birds was illegal.

Here is a link to the Montana regulations:

http://www.mtrules.org/Gateway/RuleNo.asp?RN=12.6.1112

A couple of quotes:

(2) No more than two raptors may be taken from the wild each calendar year to use in falconry.

(a) Take of peregrine falcons from the wild is limited to time periods specified by commission rules. Take is limited to permittees who have received a peregrine take permit from the department and the conditions associated with that permit.


And:

(e) A bird banded with a Federal Bird Banding Laboratory aluminum band may be taken from the wild except a banded peregrine falcon.

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #20 on: February 06, 2010, 12:23 »
Thanks Alison ... now you have my curiosity peeked ... must ... find ... more ... regulations ....

... you are an evil woman Alison  ;) ;D :-*

Offline Alison

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Re: Delisting & Taking Peregrines from the Wild
« Reply #21 on: February 11, 2010, 19:46 »
Thanks Alison ... now you have my curiosity peeked ... must ... find ... more ... regulations ....

... you are an evil woman Alison  ;) ;D :-*

That is true . . .   :)