U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Considers Three New Waterfowl Shot Types
March 15, 2004
Today the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposed a rule that will approve three shot types -- the alloys of tungsten-bronze-iron, a new formulation of tungsten-iron, and tungsten-tin-bismuth -- for use in waterfowl hunting.
"Protecting our waterfowl resource while maximizing waterfowl hunting opportunities have always been our goals," said Service Director Steve Williams. "With each new shot type approved, hunters will have a wider product range that will help ensure the future health of our waterfowl resources."
International Nontoxic Composites Corporation submitted an application for approval of tungsten-bronze-iron shot. ENVIRON-Metal Inc. submitted an application for their tungsten-iron shot formulation. Victor Oltrogge submitted an application for the tungsten-tin-bismuth shot formulation.
Waterfowl can ingest expended lead shot and many then 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 on ingestion of lead pellets.
Currently, the approved non toxic shot types are steel shot, bismuth-tin, tungsten-iron, tungsten-polymer, tungsten-matrix, tungsten-nickel-iron and tungsten-iron-nickel-tin. For more information on toxic and nontoxic shot, please see http://migratorybirds.fws.gov/issues/nontoxic_shot/nontoxic.htm.
The proposed rule published in the Federal Register is available at http://migratorybirds.fws.gov, under the "Regulations" button on the left.
Please send comments on
approval of the three new shot types by April 14, 2004 via the eRulemaking
Portal at http://www.regulations.gov
or by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
or 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. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
is the principal Federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting
and enhancing fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the
continuing benefit of the American people. The Service manages the
95-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System, which encompasses
544 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands and other
special management areas. It also operates 69 national fish hatcheries,
64 fishery resources offices and 81 ecological services field stations.
The agency enforces federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered
Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores nationally
significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat such
as wetlands, and helps foreign governments with their conservation
efforts. It also oversees the Federal Assistance program, which distributes
hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting
equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies.
NOTE: You can view our releases or subscribe to receive them -- via e-mail -- at the Service's Southeast Regional home page at http://southeast.fws.gov. Our national home page is at: http://news.fws.gov/newsreleases/.
Atlanta, GA 30345