Inside Region 3
Midwest Region
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Meet the Mississippi Flyway Representative Office

The Mississippi Flyway Representative Office located in the Regional Office in Bloomington, Minnesota, is part of Headquarters’ Division of Migratory Bird Management. There are three other Flyway Representative Offices located across the country: Atlantic (Laurel, Maryland), Central (Lakewood, Colorado), and Pacific (Vancouver, Washington).

The Service divided the nation into four administrative Flyways in 1947 for the purpose of setting migratory bird hunting regulations, and for recognizing differences in landscapes and hunter numbers across the country. Flyway Representatives serve as the liaison between the Service and the state wildlife agencies that comprise each respective Flyway.

The Mississippi Flyway Council was formed in 1952 and is comprised of 14 State wildlife agencies. The Council has established Game Bird Technical Sections and, more recently, Nongame Bird Technical Sections to cooperatively work with the Service to analyze population and habitat information in the development of migratory game bird hunting regulations as well as management programs for nongame bird species.

Members of the Mississippi Flyway Representative Office attend all meetings of the Mississippi Flyway Council, Mississippi Flyway Council Game Bird Technical Section and the Nongame Bird Technical Section. As the Federal agency with trust responsibility for managing migratory bird populations, the Service has developed (in conjunction with partners) a world-renowned system of monitoring waterfowl populations through the May Breeding Waterfowl and Habitat Population Survey, a continental banding program, and the Harvest Information Program. These monitoring programs provide data for use in adaptive harvest management whereby the optimal hunting season structure (i.e. season length and bag limits) is chosen based on competing models of how waterfowl populations respond to habitat and harvest.

Using this system each year the Service proposes hunting season frameworks (season opening and closing dates, season length and bag limit) within which State agencies must choose their hunting seasons. Flyway Councils develop recommendations on hunting seasons frameworks which are then brought before the Service Regulations Committee. This committee is comprised of four Regional Directors and the Assistant Director of Migratory Birds and of Flyway Consultants from each Flyway. The Service’s Flyway Representatives serve as technical advisors to the Service Regulations Committee.

For the past two years the October Service Regulations Committee meeting has been held in the Regional Office in Bloomington and is scheduled to be held there in October 2018 as well.

Flyway Representatives also work closely with Regional Migratory Bird staff on a variety of game and nongame issues. Flyway Representative Assistants play a critical role in monitoring programs by participating in the May survey, banding programs, Midwinter surveys, and waterfowl wingbees. Recently the Flyway Representative Assistant has been working with the Division’s Branch of Population Surveys and Regional staff to integrate remote sensing technologies to enhance safety, data quality and cost-efficiency of Migratory Bird and Refuge programs.
 

Jim Kelley

Jim Kelley

Jim Kelley has been the Mississippi Flyway Representative since 2007. Jim joined the Service in 1991 and has spent his entire career with the Headquarters Division of Migratory Bird Management.  He worked at the Division’s Field Office in Laurel, Maryland as a staff biologist for seven years before doing a one-year stint in downtown Arlington, Virginia. For quality of life reasons, he asked for a change in duty stations in 1999 and moved to the Midwest Regional Office as a Headquarters employee. From 1999 to 2007, he served as the Eastern Webless Migratory Game Bird Specialist for the Division. Following the retirement of his predecessor Ken Gamble in 2007, the Mississippi Flyway Representative Office was moved from Columbia, Missouri to the Regional Office and Kelley was selected as the new Flyway Representative. Kelley grew up in southern New England and completed his undergraduate degree in wildlife at the University of Maine and an M.S. (and ¾ of a Ph.D. – long story) from the University of Missouri. His wife and stepson lead an active outdoor life alpine and cross-country skiing, horseback riding and hiking. Kelley is an avid vegetable gardener and each year plants a garden the size of which far exceeds his time available to weed it. He has been a competitive runner and cross-country skier for over 40 years, having qualified for the Boston Marathon 10 times and completing the American Birkebeiner 50k ski marathon 20 times. For some strange reason he has recently taken on competing in 100-mile trail ultra marathons. Kelley is also an endurance coach and recently became co-owner of a bike/run/ski shop near his home in St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin with an eye towards a second career helping others enjoy the outdoors and silent sports.

 

Dave Fronczak

Dave Fronczak

Dave Fronczak joined the Service in 2001 as the Assistant to the Mississippi Flyway Representative in Columbia, Missouri. Fronczak graduated from the University of Idaho with a B.S. degree in Wildlife Resource Management (1995) and an M.S. degree in the Natural Resource Management Program at the University of Minnesota (2014). He started his career behind a computer as a Geographic Information System (GIS) Biological-technician creating the Small Acquisition Program Easement layer with the Habitat and Population Evaluation Team (HAPET) office in Bismarck, North Dakota, and then graduated to the field (banding, nest searching, four-square mile waterfowl breeding surveys). When not working as an aerial observer, banding crew leader, or desk jockey, Fronczak enjoys spending his time outdoors with his Labrador retriever hunting, hiking, camping and traveling throughout the U.S.

 

 

 

 

 

Last updated: June 8, 2020