We require a copy of your bird banding or other appropriate permit
before will can sell you mist nets or color leg bands. If you are a
researcher outside the USA or Canada, and your country does not
issue permits, it may seem like we are putting you through the wringer
to prove that you will be using the mist nets for legitimate scientific
research. Sorry, we have to do it, sometimes the process takes days,
weeks, or even months.
Thank you very much for your understanding and patience.
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Caution: If you or your students conduct any research on wildlife,
not just bird banding, it is likely that you need authorization. Rules
and regulations are not consistent across the states and maybe not
with federal law either. You may need a state permit or a federal
permit, maybe both. It's confusing but, if you don't obtain the
appropriate permits you are risking serious consequences. Biologist's
careers have been ruined because they didn't comply with the law.
Even if you are doing something as seemingly innocuous as
photographically monitoring a bird's nest, you may need a permit.
Taking blood sample's? You definitely need authorization.
Check with U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Use the Office Directory to locate the USFWS
Division of Law Enforcemnet office in your state.
Also try PERMIT-L. It is a moderated cross-disciplinary listserv,
hosted by theSmithsonian Institution, intended to facilitate discussion
and information flow on all issues related to the rapidly changing terrain
of biological collecting, permits, access, and import/export transactions.
To join, send email to LISTSERV@SIVM.SI.EDU . No subject is
required. In the body, issue the command:
Subscribe PERMIT-L Firstname Surname
The following is a post that I found on the internet........
... here is some basic information on the possession of gulls (or
any bird protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act).
Migratory birds (for a complete list, refer to 50 Code of Federal
Regulation (CFR) Part 10) are protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act
(MBTA). All native species of birds, with the exception of upland game
species (chukar, pheasant, quail, grouse), introduced species (starlings,
house or "english" sparrows, and feral pigeons) are protected by the MBTA.
Migratory birds, their parts, nests or eggs may not be possessed,
transported, imported, exported, purchased, sold, bartered, or offered for
purchase, sale or barter without appropriate permits.
The activity mentioned in the email (use of birds for a movie) is not
allowed in the United States, unless the film is produced for the purpose
of wildlife conservation education (National Geographic or Discovery
Channel films, for example). Commercial use of migratory birds is
prohibited. This would include using birds in films produced for
entertainment or commercials. In addition, birds which are legally
possessed under permit for educational purposes cannot be displayed in any
manner which may imply personal use by the permittee nor representation,
promotion or endorsement of any products, merchandise, goods services or
any business, company, corporation or other organizations except the
permittee's educational activities or the U.S. Fish and wildlife Services.
Birds held under an Education permit are non-releasable due to permanent
injury, imprinting, etc. Birds held under a Rehabilitation permit are not
to be viewed or used for educational purposes while undergoing treatment.
Non-releasable birds must be transferred to an Education permit prior to
use for that purpose.
The question is often asked of this office how birds continue to show up in
commercial films and advertisements, being used in situations not natural
to the bird (performing tricks, crows talking, etc.), and other
inappropriate uses. The regulations in other countries are often less
restrictive. Raptors can be held for personal use in Canada, and we often
get requests to import "pet owls," which are denied. The film industry
has begun filming in countries where the use of birds is less restrictive.
When we get a complaint about a bird in a commercial or film, it has
commonly been filmed out of the United States. Also, the current
technology with digital cameras and computers allows manipulation of films.
A bird filmed legally in the wild in natural surroundings can be "morphed"
in a studio to perform in any situation or location. As the technology
advances it is becoming increasingly difficult to determine what is "real"
and what is digitally produced or computerized.
Be cautious in any use of migratory birds, their parts, or products,
including feathers, eggs, or nests, as all violations of the Migratory Bird
Treaty Act are subject to criminal penalties. Also, most, if not all,
States have similar laws regarding native birds.
If there are further questions regarding migratory bird permits, visit
the U.S. Fish and Wildlife website at http://www.fws.gov. Click on
"permits" and then "migratory bird permits." There are also links to the
regional migratory bird permit offices, which gives addresses and phone
numbers for each of the seven regional offices located across the United
-USFWS Law Enforcemnet Division