The 2023 rule governing the import of game birds from Canada has been issued by the US Department of Agriculture ( USDA ) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service ( APHIS ). APHIS has updated last year’s rule to permit skin to remain intact on hunter-harvested carcasses after thorough consultation with Ducks Unlimited( DU ) waterfowl scientists. The earlier limitations are still in place.
In accordance with a previous law passed last year to stop the spread of the highly pathogenic avian influenza( HPAI ), among other restrictions, hunters from Canada were required by USDA APHIS to remove the skin from game birds they had caught. That condition is no longer necessary under the 2023 rule.
The following requirements must be met for uncooked hunter-harvested wild game bird carcasses coming from or traveling through Canada under the revised restrictions:
- removal of the spleen, nose, throat, ft, and one wing, as well as
- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service( FWS) has mandated that all birds be removed, with the exception of one wing, in order to identify species.
- Due to packaging, carcasses must be rinsed in clear, fresh water that is drinkable and free of dirt, blood, and feces.
- Carcasses must be transported and imported in leak-proof plastic container and stored in a box or cool.
- During travel and trade, bones need to be chilled or frozen.
According to DU CEO Adam Putnam,” We appreciate the USDA’s willingness to consider the suggestions of our scientists in this decision-making process.” ” They have considered the issues facing the shooting and conservation areas and have decided based on the most up-to-date research.” The 2023 guideline provides National waterfowlers with clearly defined instructions to properly prepare trips north of the border while taking the necessary precautions to stop the spread of HPAI. It is both practical and scientific in nature.
Over the past month, DU has played a significant role in this process. A restriction prohibiting Canadian hunters from bringing game birds into the United States was issued by USDA APHIS on September 2, 2022. On September 12, 2022, USDA APHIS issued a revised regulation allowing hunting to travel corpses with certain constraints— which were the same as the 2023 rule but included the additional condition to remove the skin from them— arguing that there was little evidence that this regulation would significantly affect the spread of HPAI in the U.S.
We all agree that preventing HPAI from spreading to the United States is of the utmost importance, according to DU Chief Conservation Officer Karen Waldrop. Waterfowlers should be aware that this rule-making procedure is rigorous and still makes use of the most up-to-date research, which indicates that British hunters’ transported corpses pose little threat. To ensure that game birds are transported appropriately, waterfowlers must adhere to these import regulations. DU may assist in educating birds hunting on safe methods.
Visit https :// www.aphis.usda.gov for more information on restriction requirements and additional USDA APHIS recommendations for hunters.