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Service Approves an Additional Nontoxic Shot Type - Considers Four Others

Date Posted: August 23, 2005

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today approved a non-toxic shot type composed of iron-tungsten-nickel for waterfowl and coot hunting in the United States. In addition, the Service will publish tomorrow in the Federal Register proposed approval for four additional nontoxic shot types.

The approved shot manufactured by ENVIRON-Metal Inc. of Sweet Home, Oregon, is composed of 62 percent iron, 25 percent tungsten, and 13 percent nickel (ITN).

"The Service's approval of ITN shot and its proposal to approve the four other shot types demonstrates our determination to make it easier for hunters to comply with restrictions on lead shot. Hunters now have more choices of shot types that will continue to reduce waterfowl's exposure to lead," said Acting Service Director Matt Hogan. "The Service appreciates the efforts of the companies that have developed alternatives to lead shot."

The four shot types under consideration are:

* tungsten_iron_copper_nickel (TICN) shot, comprised of 40_76 percent tungsten, 10_37 percent iron, 9_16 percent copper and 5_7 percent nickel by Spherical Precision, Inc. of Tustin, California;

* iron_tungsten_nickel (ITN) alloys composed of 20_70 percent tungsten, 10_40 percent nickel, and 10_70 percent iron by ENVIRON-Metal Inc. of Sweet Home, Oregon;

* tungsten_bronze (TB) shot made of 60 percent tungsten, 35.1 percent copper, 3.9 percent tin, and 1 percent iron by Olin Corporation of East Alton, Illinois; and

* tungsten_tin_iron (TTI) shot composed of 58 percent tungsten, 38 percent tin, and 4 percent iron by Nice Shot, Inc., of Albion, Pennsylvania.

Waterfowl can ingest expended lead shot and die from lead poisoning. Efforts to phase out lead shot began in the 1970s, and a nationwide ban on lead shot for all waterfowl hunting was implemented in 1991. Canada instituted a complete ban in 1999.

A study in the mid-1990s suggested that the nationwide ban in the United States on the use of lead shot for waterfowl hunting has had remarkable success. Six years after the ban, researchers estimated a 64 percent reduction in lead poisoning deaths of surveyed mallard ducks and a 78 percent decline of lead pellet ingestion. The study found that restriction on lead shot prevented the deaths of thousands of waterfowl.

The approval of this new shot, the list of approved shot types for waterfowl hunting includes bismuth_tin, iron (steel), iron_tungsten (2 types), iron_tungsten_nickel, tungsten_bronze, tungsten_matrix, tungsten_nickel_iron, tungsten_polymer, tungsten_tin_bismuth and tungsten_tin_iron_nickel.

For more information on toxic and nontoxic shot, please see http://www.fws.gov/migratorybirds/CurrentBirdIssues/nontoxic.htm.

The final rule for the ITN shot approval and the proposed rule for the other shot types are available at http://migratorybirds.fws.gov, under the "Regulations" button on the left.

Please submit comments on the four proposed approvals by: internet at http://migratorybirds.fws.gov and follow the links to submit a comment;

by e_mail to George_T_Allen@fws.gov and include "RIN 1018_AU04" in the subject line of the message;

by fax to 703-358-2217;

by mail to Chief, Division of Migratory Bird Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4401 North Fairfax Drive, Mail Stop MBSP_4107, Arlington, Virginia 22203_1610;

or by hand delivery at Division of Migratory Bird Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4501 North Fairfax Drive, Room 4091, Arlington, Virginia 22203_1610;

or by the Federal eRulemaking Portal, identified by RIN 1018_AU04, at http://www.regulations.gov.

Contacts:
Nicholas Throckmorton (202) 208-5636

Links:
For more information on toxic and nontoxic shot, please see http://www.fws.gov/migratorybirds/CurrentBirdIssues/nontoxic.htm.

The final rule for the ITN shot approval and the proposed rule for the other shot types are available at http://migratorybirds.fws.gov, under the "Regulations" button on the left.

Last updated: February 13, 2013