[Tweeters] A distressing news article

mcallisters4 at comcast.net mcallisters4 at comcast.net
Tue Dec 24 22:13:13 PST 2019

It’s troubling to think that just because the conservation measures are “purely voluntary” a state would choose not to employ them. Is that what the citizens of Virginia expect and desire from the public agencies that serve in their interests?

I have a particularly difficult time with the interpretation that destroying birds or their eggs is lawful when it’s not the primary intent. If you’re going to paint a bridge and you need to clean it first, doesn’t destruction of bird eggs become your intent as soon as you turn your attention to the task of knocking the nest down? Is it really an acceptable excuse to say, “My intent was to clean the bridge for painting and the nests with eggs and young birds were simply things that needed to cleaned off. It wasn’t my intent to kill any birds?”

Kelly McAllister


From: Tweeters <tweeters-bounces at mailman11.u.washington.edu> On Behalf Of Jane Hadley
Sent: Tuesday, December 24, 2019 3:31 PM
To: Tweeters, Dear <tweeters at u.washington.edu>
Subject: [Tweeters] A distressing news article

Dear Tweetsters - This is a most distressing article to have to read on Christmas Eve.


By Lisa Friedman

WASHINGTON — As the state of Virginia prepared for a major bridge and tunnel expansion in the tidewaters of the Chesapeake Bay last year, engineers understood that the nesting grounds of 25,000 gulls, black skimmers, royal terns and other seabirds were about to be plowed under.

To compensate, they considered developing an artificial island as a haven. Then in June 2018, the Trump administration stepped in. While the federal government “appreciates” the state’s efforts, new rules in Washington had eliminated criminal penalties for “incidental” migratory bird deaths that came in the course of normal business, administration officials advised. <https://int.nyt.com/data/documenthelper/6617-mbtahamptonroadsbridgetunnel/b125aef2aad4afb74731/optimized/full.pdf#page=1> Such conservation measures were now “purely voluntary.”

The state ended its island planning.

The island is one of dozens of bird-preservation efforts that have fallen away in the wake of the policy change in 2017 that was billed merely as a technical clarification to a century-old law protecting migratory birds. Across the country birds have been killed and nests destroyed by oil spills, construction crews and chemical contamination, all with no response from the federal government, according to emails, memos and other documents viewed by The New York Times.....etc.

Jane Hadley

Seattle, WA

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