Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Act for Songbirds

Please consider signing the American Bird Conservancy's petition in support of renewing the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act (H.R. 5756).

U.S. Representatives Ron Kind (D-WI) and Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD) have introduced bipartisan legislation to better fund efforts to protect migratory birds. The bill, H.R. 5756, reauthorizes the existing Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act (NMBCA) at significantly higher levels to meet the growing needs of our migrants, many of which are in rapid decline.

NMBCA is the only federal U.S. grants program specifically dedicated to the conservation of our migrant birds that is available Americas-wide. It has a proven track-record of success, having supported 225 projects in 44 U.S. states/territories and 34 other countries since its inception in 2002. More than $21 million in NMBCA grants have leveraged over $97 million in required matching partner contributions. Advances in conservation for many species, such as work by ABC and its partners to protect the declining Cerulean Warbler, owe much to the NMBCA.

The reauthorization bill proposes a significant increase in maximum funding from $6 million to $20 million. Currently, many more grant applications are received than can be funded, and so many worthwhile projects go unsupported. This increase in the NMBCA is therefore crucial in helping achieve international bird conservation goals.