The Species Action Plan for the Bald Eagle has been completed, and is available online at the FWC Bald Eagle Management webpage... Many of the actions identified in the plan are ongoing and already well underway, others are just being initiated. For example, staff from FWC’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute have started development of a monitoring strategy that reflects plan objectives...
On April 20th, 2017, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission approved revisions to the state’s bald eagle rule (68A-16.002, F.A.C.). The approved rule revisions became effective in June, 2017, and eliminate the need for applicants to obtain both a state and federal permit for activities with the potential to take or disturb bald eagles or their nests. Under the approved revisions, only a federal permit is required...
In November, 2017, FWC staff completed the Species Action Plan for the Bald Eagle. This plan replaces the 2008 Bald Eagle Management Plan. A non-regulatory conservation plan, the Species Action Plan outlines actions necessary to continue to maintain a stable or increasing population of bald eagles in Florida. The Species Action Plan will be reviewed at 7 year intervals, and progress towards actions will be updated on the FWC eagle webpages and through annual reports...
Disturbances during nest site selection and building and egg-laying, as well as later when the eaglets may be branching but not capable of sustained flight are more likely to discourage breeding or startle the eaglets and cause them to fall.
Still very unfortunate, but under the new and reduced reduced legal protections (as I understand them) there is no penalty unless the disturbance is near the nest and/or results in a "taking"of an eagle (injury, death or abandonment). A Federal (FWC) permit for such activity would probably not be required because the "taking" would not be the purpose of the activity. (**This latter qualification is a loophole which now applies even for species still covered under the Endangered Species Act**).
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife removed the bald eagle from the federal endangered and threatened species list in 2007. The USFWS continues to manage eagles under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act and the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. To learn more, visit the USFWS eagle website.
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See the new State (FWC) regulations here. Essentially, now only the Federal (FWS) laws and rules are applicable.
In November, 2017, FWC staff completed the Florida Species Action Plan for the Bald Eagle. It became effective on May 15, 2008.
This plan replaces the 2008 Bald Eagle Management Plan. A non-regulatory conservation plan, the Species Action Plan outlines actions necessary to continue to maintain a stable or increasing population of bald eagles in Florida. The Species Action Plan will be reviewed at 7 year intervals, and progress towards actions will be updated on the FWC eagle webpages and through annual reports.
Blasting and other loud, intermittent noise including fireworks During breeding season (Oct 1 - May 15)
To avoid disturbing nesting eagles and their young, it is recommended that you:
Avoid blasting and other activities that produce extremely loud noises within 1⁄2 mile of active nests or within 1 mile in open areas, unless greater tolerance to the activity (or similar activity) has been demonstrated by the eagles in the nesting area.
This recommendation also applies to the use of fireworks classified by the Federal Department of Transportation as Class B explosives, which includes the larger fireworks that are intended for licensed public display.
If you can meet these guidelines, you do not think your project will disturb eagles and you do not wish to apply for a permit at this time please print these guidelines as your final determination.
If you cannot meet these guidelines visit the permit application page.
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FWS 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.
22.26 - Application Form
22.26 - Annual Report Form
The Secretary may issue a permit for an "incidental take" of listed species that are incidental to and not for the purpose of a proposed activity (ESA §10). Permits may be issued only after the landowner submits a "habitat conservation plan" (HCP), including proposed mitigation measures and an explanation of why alternatives were rejected. If FWS finds that the "take" will be incidental, will be satisfactorily mitigated, and will not appreciably reduce the species' chances for survival or recovery, it must issue the permit.