Louisiana Ecological Services
Southeast Region


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Migratory Bird Program


The Migratory Bird Treaty Act was passed in 1918.  That Act prohibits the taking, killing, possession, transportation, and importation of migratory birds, their eggs, parts, and nests; except when specifically authorized by the U.S. Department of the Interior.   While the Act has no provision for allowing unauthorized take, the Service realizes that some birds may be harmed or killed as a result of project implementation even when reasonable measures to protect birds are implemented.  The Service’s Office of Law Enforcement (LE) carries out its mission to protect migratory birds through investigations and enforcement, as well as by fostering relationships with individuals, companies, and industries that have taken effective steps to minimize their impacts on migratory birds, and by encouraging others to enact such programs.  As such, LE focuses its resources on investigating and prosecuting individuals and entities that take migratory birds without regard for their actions or without effort to implement Service recommendations or conservation measures.

The Louisiana ES Office works with project proponents to develop measures to protect nesting bald eagles, colonial water birds, and habitat that is important for birds of conservation concern to the Service.  Construction time restrictions and bird abatement plans are two measures that we use to avoid impacts to nesting migratory birds.  We have also worked with regulatory agencies in securing monetary contributions from developers to offset losses of bird nesting habitat.


Colonial Water Birds Near Restoration Site Credit:  USFWS
Colonial Water Birds in Vicinity of Barrier Island Restoration Work

Credit: USFWS

Bald Eagle Consultation Work  Credit:  USFWS
Bald Eagle Consultation Work

Credit: USFWS


Under the authorities of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, the US Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) is the lead Federal agency for managing and conserving migratory birds in the United States. The Service’s Migratory Bird Program’s Division of Migratory Bird Management and Division of Bird Habitat Conservation have many programs that are actively involved in migratory bird conservation activities. Together these programs and initiatives are working to provide leadership in the conservation of bird habitat and conservation and management of birds for future generations.

Permit - Regulatory Information


  • USFWS Migratory Bird: Eagles website
  • USFWS Migratory Bird: Permits website
  • USFWS Wind Energy Development website

    How to Report a Banded Bird


  • The North American Bird Banding Program

    Bird Databases


  • Migratory Bird Data Center
  • Searchable Species Database: ebird.org
  • Christmas Bird Count: Audubon
  • Partners in Flight Land-bird Population Estimate Database
  • Patuxent Wildlife Research Center Colonial Waterbird Monitoring Partnership Database
  • North American Breeding Bird Survey
  • National Wildlife Health Center bird die-offs


    Additional Bird Links

  • Birds of Conservation Concer 2008
  • Bird calls and Identification: The CornellLab of Ornithology - Songs & Calls
  • North American Bird Conservation Initiative

  • State of the Birds Report

    National Programs

    Federal Duck Stamp and Junior Duck Stamp Program

    National Migratory Bird Joint Ventures Programs

    Urban Conservation Treaty for Migratory Birds

    U.S. Shorebird Conservation Plan

    North American Waterbird Conservation Plan (NAWCP)

    Partners in Flight (PIF)

    North American Bird Conservation initiative

    Migratory Bird Flyways and Flyway Councils

    Atlantic Flyway

    Mississippi Flyway

    Central Flyway

    Pacific Flyway

    Regional Programs

    Joint Ventures

    Appalacian Mountains

    Central Hardwoods

    East Gulf Coastal Plain

    Gulf Coast

    Last updated: October 4, 2016