Press Release
Presidential Migratory Bird Federal Stewardship Award Presented to Department of Defense

May 15, 2013

Contacts:
Alicia F. King, FWS
(571) 214-3117

L. Peter Boice, DoD
(571) 372-6905

The Department of Defense (DoD) is this year’s recipient of the Presidential Migratory Bird Federal Stewardship Award, in recognition of their multi-year *Migratory Linkages of Burrowing Owls on Department of Defense Installations and Adjacent Lands* project.

Led by the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service and composed of many federal agencies with migratory bird responsibilities, the Council for the Conservation of Migratory Birds selected the awardee. The award will be presented to DoD at the Environment for the Americas International Migratory Bird Day recognition event today at the Embassy of Canada in Washington D. C.

“I congratulate the Department of Defense for its leadership and work in investigating possible causes of population declines of western burrowing owls, ” said U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe. “This project was truly a tri-national collaboration of diverse partners and illustrates how birds can benefit from great research and partnership work. ”

Initiated in 2005, the project studied declines in burrowing owl populations across their range in the United States and Canada. The information allowed partners to develop species-specific management plans. This is particularly important because western burrowing owls often select habitats adjacent to runways on military airfields. In addition, long-billed curlew and other grassland bird species benefit from this work. See cleantext_url_71s956r46425661023r8rp9r0348q4qp2009-DoD-project-factsheet_3.pdf for more information.

“DoD is proud to have sponsored this multi-year, multi-partner effort for the last eight years. It truly represents what can be achieved when partners come together to work toward common goals, ” said John Conger, acting deputy undersecretary of Defense (Installations and Environment). “With 28 million acres of often high-quality lands, DoD has a vested interest in managing its resources both for the military mission and to conserve our nation’s natural and cultural heritage. ”

“Environment for the Americas is proud to host the Presidential Migratory Bird Federal Stewardship Award. This year’s International Migratory Bird Day 2013 theme calls attention to the full life cycle of migratory birds. The Burrowing Owl project is just one example of the importance of migratory bird conservation. ” said Susan Bonfield, executive director of Environment for the Americas.

The Council for the Conservation of MigratoryBirds ( http://www.fws.gov/migratorybirds/CCMBA.html) includes representatives from the departments of Interior, State, Commerce, Agriculture, Transportation, Energy, Defense, and the Environmental Protection Agency. The Council is open to all federal agencies whose activities may directly or indirectly affect migratory bird populations.


The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.

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