"Proposed Park Service Rule Allows Removal of Eagles from National Monuments"

 
PRESS RELEASE
  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date:   March 14, 2001
Contact:   Dave Simon, 505-247-1221


"Proposed Park Service Rule Allows Removal of Eagles from National Monuments"

Washington, DC - The National Park Service has proposed a rule that would permit the Hopi Tribe of northern Arizona to remove golden eaglets from Wupatki National Monument for ceremonial purposes. This rule would open a park unit to the removal of park wildlife for purposes other than research, the protection of life and safety, or for park administrative purposes—establishing a dangerous precedent for the entire National Park System.

"This issue is exceedingly complex," said Dave Simon, National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) Southwest regional director. "We neither question nor condemn the Tribe for their beliefs or practices. We have great respect for the cultural and religious traditions of all Native Americans. However, we feel strongly that allowing the Hopi to remove wildlife from Wupatki National Monument is in violation of current Park Service law and regulations. We urge the Park Service to move carefully and within the constraints of the law."

The American public has come to expect that units of the park system are safe havens for native plant and animal species. The system also is designed to represent and protect the full spectrum of cultures that have contributed to the shaping of the nation. "We're exploring new administrative ground here," said Simon. "We're worried about where this action puts us in terms of precedent. NPCA looks forward to working with the Park Service, the Hopi and other Native American tribes, and other partners to advance the many goals we hold in common."

Written comments about the proposed rule will be accepted by mail, fax, or electronic mail through March 23, 2001. Comments should be addressed to: Kym Hall, National Park Service, 1849 C Street, N.W., Room 7413, Washington, DC 20240. Fax: (202) 208-6756. E-mail: WASO-Regulations@nps.gov.

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