Animal Rights Activists Acknowledged to be Stakeholders by Flyway Council!

What struck me as being one of the most amazing documents to come out of the Flyway meeting was a letter written to Paul Schmidt, Chief of the Office of Migratory Bird Management of the FWS and Steve Wendt, Chief, Migratory. Bird Conservation, of the Canadian Wildlife Service (CWS). The letter was written by Robert McDowell, Chairman, Atlantic Flyway Council, with a cc: to the Mississippi Flyway Council Chairman. It regarded the request by the FWS and CWS agencies for input to the development of a “North American Harvest Strategy for black ducks.”

It says in relevant part:

“The Council believes that the overriding requirement for success of this project is recognition of the absolute need for a coordinated harvest management strategy for effective management of this shared resource… WHO ARE THE STAKEHOLDERS THAT SHOULD BE DIRECTLY INVOLVED IN CONSULATION?

Established protocol for assessing stakeholder concerns exist at both federal, state and provincial levels. and should serve the purpose of determining needs and desires of the diverse public using the black duck resource in both countries. A partial list of stakeholders follows: The Atlantic and Mississippi Flyway Councils; US and Canadian Federal Wildlife agencies; Provincial and State /wildlife agencies; migratory bird hunters; nonconsumptive wildlife viewers; animal rights activists; native peoples; wildlife oriented business interests including hunting and tourist lodges and guiding services; university wildlife research interests, and sporting arms, ammunition, and equipment manufacturers, among others.

Obviously all of these stakeholders do not need to be directly involved in consultations between countries, but consultants should endeavor to assess the concerns of these groups…”

While it looks like a giant joke, we believe the document may do a couple of things for us: – It may give us automatic STANDING for the first time. WE ARE ACKNOWLEDGED STAKEHOLDERS! Note that they didn’t say “animal welfare”! They said ANIMAL RIGHTS!

There’s no doubt that it’s set up to favor the consumptive user, but I believe it is a breakthrough in terms of acknowledgement and we have to take our wins when we get them. Any ideas about how to use our new status as stakeholder?


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Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting / C.A.S.H.
P.O. Box 562
New Paltz, NY 12561