Bald Eagles and Golden Eagles

National Rules and Regulations

For information about the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act (Eagle Act), and permitting rules and regulations visit the National Migratory Bird Eagle web page. Download a copy of the National Bald Eagle Management Guidelines. The guidelines provide recommendations on how best to avoid impacting bald eagles.

Southeast Region Bald Eagle and Golden Eagle Permitting

Bald eagles and golden eagles and their nests are protected from take, including disturbance, under the federal Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. Under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, “take” is defined as “pursue, shoot, shoot at, poison, wound, kill, capture, trap, collect, destroy, molest or disturb.”

Some activities and projects are eligible for federal permits under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act (Law).

22.26 Eagle take associated with, but not the purpose of an activity

This permit authorizes take of live bald and golden eagles and their eggs, where the take is associated with, but not the purpose of some human activity or project, and where take cannot practicably be avoided. Authorization is subject to conditions.

22.27 Removal of eagle nest

This permit authorizes removal or relocation of an eagle nest in certain instances, including an active or inactive nest where necessary to alleviate a safety emergency; an inactive nest when the removal is necessary to ensure public health and safety; an inactive nest that is built on a human-engineered structure and creates a functional hazard that renders the structure inoperable; or an inactive nest in certain other instances where the take or the mitigation for the take will provide a clear and substantial benefit to eagles.

22.21 Scientific Exhibition

An International Transport for Scientific or Exhibition Purposes Permit is required for the export, reimport, or transport of bald or golden eagle parts from or to the United States for scientific or educational exhibition purposes.

22.22 Indian Religious Eagle Parts for Native American Religious Purposes

The National Eagle Repository was established as a central clearinghouse to collect and distribute eagle parts. To request eagles, parts and feathers for Native American religious purposes from the National Eagle Repository for the first time you must complete two forms.

22.23 Eagle Depredation

An Eagle Depredation Permit is required to take or disturb bald or golden eagles that have become injurious to wildlife, agriculture or other personal property, or human health or safety.

22.25 Golden eagle nest interfering with resource development or recovery (pdf)

A Take of Golden Eagle Nests Permit is available only to parties engaged in a resource development or recovery operation and only when nests are inactive.

Wind Energy Development

For wind energy development information and the Draft Eagle Conservation Plan (ECP) Guidance, visit the Service Wind Energy Development Information website. The ECP Guidance was developed to provide interpretive assistance to wind developers, Service biologists, and others who evaluate potential impacts on eagles from proposed wind energy projects, and includes applying the regulatory permit standards as specified by the Eagle Act and other federal laws.

Southeast Region Bald Eagle Monitoring Guidelines

The Southeast Region of the Service issued Bald eagle monitoring guidelines in 2007 for projects located in Florida only that were previously issued a Biological Opinion under Section 7 or Section 10 of the Endangered Species Act and refers to these 2007 monitoring guidelines as a biological opinion and/or permit condition. Many existing Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission bald eagle permits also refer to these guidelines.

Southeast Region Technical Assistance

If you need assistance determining whether or not a federal Eagle Act permit is recommended for a project, visit the Eagle Permit Technical Assistance website. This site is a self-guided key that allows you to enter in project specific information that will help you determine if it is advisable to obtain a federal permit for your activities that may disturb eagles. Please be advised that federal permits are always required under 50 CFR 22.27 for any removal of a bald eagle or golden eagle nest. This includes any nest used by an eagle regardless of the species that originally built the nest or a nest built by an eagle but used by another migratory bird species.

Contacts

For technical assistance on a project or questions about monitoring within Southeast - Region 4, please email FW4eaglemonitoring@fws.gov.

For questions about migratory bird and eagle permitting in Southeast – Region 4 and throughout the nation, please visit the Permits Regional Offices website to determine your regional contact.