The falconry bill passed the senate this morning(3-25-09). It is now off to the governor's desk for signing. Once signed it will be law in 10 days.
There are also a couple of bills moving along that deal with trespassing. SB 1735 authored by Sen. Sparks of Norman. Rep. Sears has an identical bill that has passed the house. The wording is identical in the 2 bills. The penalties for trespassing increase greatly. In fact, a second offense for trespassing on land used primarily for farming, ranching, or forrestry would require imprisonment for a minimum of 30 days. These bills also have wording that allows one to retrieve their livestock or any other animal from anothers land without seeking permission. The animal, bird dog or raptor in our case, must have inadvertantly strayed onto anothers land. If a landowner has previously informed you that you are not allowed on his/her land you may not retrieve your animal. You would still be liable for any damages you cause while retrieving your animal. The OFA board had discussed attempting to do something with regard to our trespassing laws. This bill should give hunters the ability to retrieve their animals without fear of arrest. Rep Sears feels this bill will pass in this session. Feel free to call or write your legislator to voice your opinion.
Monday, March 23, 2009
The flyway council members recently met and developed a peregrine take plan. This was an unexpected and rapid development. Thirty-six birds may be trapped east of the 100th meridian(east of the Oklahoma panhandle). Each state requesting a take was granted one. Twelve birds were granted to the Central Flyway, 6 to the Mississippi, and 18 to the Atlantic. Two states in the Central requested a take, 2 in the Mississippi, and 5 or 6 in the Atlantic. Ten birds were granted to Texas and 2 birds to Oklahoma. The number of birds granted to each flyway, and then to each state within the flyway, was determined by the prevalence of birds within the flyway or state. ODWC will now determine how the 2 birds may be taken.