Migratory Birds
Mountain-Prairie Region

Migratory Birds: Mountain-Prairie Region Introduction:

Baird's Sparrow by Bob Gress

Baird's Sparrow
Copyright: Bob Gress

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have the primary responsibility for administration of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (1918), its amendments, and subsequent acts. All migratory birds are listed as trust species and require USFWS to manage these species. However, the list of species protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) are a subset of the trust species, and can be found at: http://www.fws.gov/migratorybirds/intrnltr/mbta/mbtintro.html. More information on MBTA and the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act can be found at http://www.fws.gov/permits/ltr.shtml. The Mountain-Prairie Region has two coordinators responsible for these issues. The Migratory Bird Coordinator is responsible for migratory birds in the Region. The nongame Migratory Bird Coordinator has responsibility for the nongame species.

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  1. Declining species and species groups are a major priority. One current effort is focused on identifying the species most at risk for listing as endangered or threatened and the reasons for their decline. The Migratory Bird Management Office in Washington D.C. published a list of the Species of Conservation Concern, 2002.  Another source of information about species of concern is available at http://www.partnersinflight.org/.
  2. Monitoring bird trends is the major method used to determine the status of trust species. The largest effort to monitor avian species is the Breeding Bird Survey.
  3. Assessment of refuge management actions on nongame species has been a major priority for our work. Current efforts are under way to access the management actions for waterfowl production to their effects on nongame birds.
  4. Another function of the Migratory Bird Coordinator is technical data exchange and application of science to the management of avian species. Recently, we have published a number of Biological Technical Reports. The natural history accounts for all avian species in North America have been published in the Birds of North America. Status assessments for all birds have also been published by Nature Serve. In addition, USFWS works closely with other groups and agencies to further our priorities and management goals. A major partner in this effort is the U.S. Geological Survey's Biological Resources Division, especially the Migratory Bird Research and Monitoring group.

Other Bird Areas

The bird checklists for all refuges in Region 6 have been posted on the Internet.  The Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center in Jamestown, North Dakota has a informative web site with a wealth of information on many species in the Mountain-Prairie Region.

The Christmas Bird Count is a volunteer effort to document the presence and ranges of wintering species.

A major tool used to assess waterfowl populations and trends is banding. Data from the Bird Banding Lab is important for setting hunting regulations and is a tool for assessing nongame bird monitoring trends and migratory pathways

Other Internet sites with interesting information on birds can be found through the Electronic Resource in Ornithology

Checklist of North American Birds


Other U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Regions have similar responsibilities and organizations.

For more information, contact:

Stephanie L. Jones
Nongame Migratory Bird Coordinator
P.O. Box 25486 DFC
Denver, CO  80225
FAX:  303-236-8680
E-mail:  Stephanie_Jones@fws.gov


Last updated: June 1, 2011