Summer is waning and whether you are working with new birds or picking up old ones, everyone is looking forward to the cooler days of fall and the upcoming hawking season. Like most of you, NAFA has had a busy summer with field meet planning, elections, and ongoing work with legislators and our conservation partners.
Some of you reading this are planning your season, packing for your first hunting trip, or getting gear ready to go trap a bird of the year. Be safe and have a blast, I can't wait to hear about it! Besure to post pictures and share your stories on the NAFA Online Weathering Yard.
First and foremost I want to thank all those who voted in the Southeastern Directorate. Corresponding Secretary Joan Marie has just completed tabulation of the results. In a very close election, Director Rick Shores was re-elected. I want to personally thank candidate Jeffrey Coe for stepping forward to volunteer on behalf of NAFA members.
This January NAFA will have three new Directors, Robert Rainey (Director-at-Large), Timothy Sell (North Pacific Director), and David Feliciano (South Pacific Director). These guys have already hit the ground running, ramping up and getting engaged on important projects. I can't wait to hear their ideas and energy new Directors always bring to the mix.
AND THE WINNER IS.....
Earlier this year NAFA and Marshall Telemetry partnered to celebrate and reward NAFA members. All NAFA members were entered in to a random draw for a complete GPS telemetry system…just for being members! Thank you Marshall for helping to make this happen!!
I am pleased to announce that the winner is long-time NAFA member Ronnie Brodie from Condorrat, Cumbernauld, United Kingdom. Ronnie has been a member since 1986 and asked us to share this wonderful little note.
“Thanks NAFA and Marshall for a fantastic prize of a GPS telemetry system. I have been a NAFA member for many years and l look forward to the magazines to find out what's going on and the new boundaries falconers are pushing the quarry you have, and the wide open spaces you have to hawk in, as well as the variety of birds used, both aviary bred and wild taken. Someday l hope to make it over, it’s on my to do list! Thanks again to everyone.” - Ronnie Brodie
Be sure to watch the NAFA Weathering Yard for more new and exciting opportunities to win falconry gear and merchandise.
2019 NAFA FIELD MEET
The feel of fall is in the air in Kansas, at least some days are under 90 degrees anyway, and the 2019 North American Falconry Meet is quickly approaching. November 17-22, the City of Great Bend is rolling out the red carpet to falconers from across continent and around the world. The Best Western Angus Inn will serve as the meet headquarters, and while rooms sold out at this venue quickly there are multiple other hotels just a short distance away.
West Central Kansas is a mecca for many upland game hunters and favorable weather and precipitation amounts hold promise for good game numbers in 2019.
Cottontails, jackrabbits, pheasants, quail, prairie chickens, and ducks can be found in areas radiating out from Great Bend. Nearby Cheyenne Bottoms reported there are 15,000-20,000 ducks already in the refuge and many more in the surrounding areas. The meet committee is working with local private landowners to shore up permissions for meet attendees, in addition to hundreds of acres of public land, and countless properties which are part of the Walk in Hunt Areas (WIHA). Desirable falconry game species are to be found within driving distance of Great Bend.
(Registration is still open... Don't wait until it's too late!!!)
For those who are not flying birds and/or are looking for other things to do in the area, Great Bend features many restaurants, shopping, museums, a zoo and more. It’s the perfect sized town for falconers and their families to find plenty of interesting things to do during the week of the meet.
In years past, meet attendees have donated blood as way to give back to the community. Kansas blood banks are in desperate need of blood currently, so this year we will be bring back the American Red Cross blood donation bus. I really hope many of you will make time to donate to this worthy and necessary cause. You never know when it may be you or your family in need. Stay tuned for dates and times as they become finalized and again please consider donating.
Currently schedules are being finalized and there is a buzz around Great Bend as we get closer to the start of the meet. As always there will be nightly speakers, raffles, and vendors. There is still space to donate items to the raffle, as well as space for additional vendors. More information about meet can be found at https://www.n-a-f-a.com/event/2019NAFAMeet, or on the meet's Facebook Page, search @2019NAFAMeet
All the parts are falling into place from a great falconry meet! I look forward to seeing you all in Kansas soon!
CANADIAN LEGISLATION UPDATE AND CALL FOR ACTION
Recently NAFA submitted comments in support of updates the Migratory Bird Convention Act. This act implements the Migratory Bird Treaty in Canada. The updates modernized the Act and had no effect on falconry.
The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) has reclassified the anatum/tundrius peregrine falcon from “special concern” to “not at risk”. As a result, the Canadian Wildlife Service has submitted a proposal to completely delist the anatum/tundrius peregrine falcon. This is a great cause for celebration! All falconers are encouraged to submit comments online in support of this proposal.
The government call for comments can be found here:
Your comment can be sent by email to:
The NAFA Canadian Technical Advisory Group has provided the following “template” comment.
Director General, Wildlife Management
Canadian Wildlife Service
Environment and Climate Change Canada
Gatineau QC K1A 0H3
Dear Madam Julie Spallin,
On October 15, 2018, the Minister of Environment and Climate Change received the assessment of COSEWIC that the Peregrine Falcon anatum/tundrius, as Not at Risk.
I have reviewed the document entitled “COSEWIC Assessment and Status Report on the Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus pealei subspecies - Falco peregrinus pealei anatum/tundrius - Falco peregrinus anatum/tundrius in Canada 2017”, and I fully support the proposal to remove the Peregrine Falcon anatum/tundrius from Schedule 1.
First listed as endangered in 1978, peregrine falcons have undergone a remarkable recovery. As a falconer this is something to celebrate and I am proud of the role falconers played in documenting the initial decline and as key contributors in the captive-breeding and recovery programs in Canada as well as the United States.
I would like to thank you for the opportunity to comment and congratulate Environment Canada on the complete recovery of the Peregrine Falcon in Canada.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact Canadian Director Rondeau or Vice President Geleynse.
IMPORTANCE OF PARTNERSHIPS: CALL TO ACTION
Partnerships are ever more important in today’s world. Through our membership in the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership (TRCP) and the American Wildlife Conservation Partners (AWCP) NAFA has joined with organizations that represent millions of Americans who hunt, fish, hike, paddle and enjoy the outdoors and wildlife. These organizations work with congress to develop bi-partisan support for conservation-related legislation.
Recently the John D. Dingell Jr. Conservation, Management and Recreation Act (S.47) was passed. Five other bi-partisan conservation bills have been introduced and need your support. These five programs are fully complimentary—restoring wildlife habitat, fixing recreational infrastructure, and expanding access to America’s outdoor heritage—and together provide the foundation for conservation across America:
1. Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (H.R. 3742): This legislation provides matching funds to states, territories and tribes to enact collaborative, proactive habitat restoration to restore wildlife and prevent species from requiring ESA protections.
2. Restore Our Parks (and Public Lands) Act (S.500, H.R. 1225). Maintaining roads, trails, and other infrastructure on public lands makes it possible for millions of people to hunt, fish, and enjoy them. Since much recreation and most hunting and fishing occurs on non-Parks land, the AWCP is recommending that the legislation also direct a small portion of the funding to maintain infrastructure at National Forests, National Wildlife Refuges, and BLM lands.
3. Land and Water Conservation Fund Permanent Funding Act (S.1081, H.R. 3195). LWCF has helped conserve some of the most important lands in our nation for hunting, fishing, and recreating. Permanent, dedicated funding for LWCF will ensure continued expansion of hunting, fishing, and other recreational opportunities and conserving important wildlife habitat.
4. North American Wetlands Conservation Extension Act (S.261, H.R. 925). The NAWCA has produced economic and environmental benefits, while conserving wetlands that support America’s fish and wildlife resources for 30 years. 2,644 NAWCA projects have positively affected over 33.4 million acres of habitat. In addition to protecting wildlife habitat, this program improves water quality and generates local revenue by increasing tourism through enhanced outdoor recreation opportunities.
5. Modernizing the Pittman-Robertson Fund for Tomorrow’s Needs Act (S.2092, H.R. 877). The Pittman-Robertson Fund is vital for the conservation of wildlife, but it lacks a mechanism to sustain and grow the number of sportsmen and sportswomen who fund it through the payment of user excise taxes. This bipartisan bill will authorize some P-R funds for state fish and wildlife agencies to recruit, retain and reactivate hunters and recreational shooters.
(*List courtesy of AWCP.)
NAFA members are encouraged to write their senator and representative in support of these important measures. By enacting these interrelated pieces of legislation, we can grow America’s outdoor economy and ensure America’s public lands and wildlife heritage endure for the enjoyment and benefit of current and future generations.
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Always remember...... "Our differences as falconers make us stronger, but falconry is what unites us!
Falconry makes us family!"
Thank you all for your continued support!
See you in Kansas!!