What is the Migratory Bird Treaty Act? The Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 is a United States federal law, enacted in 1916 and implemented in 1918, for the protection of migratory birds between the United States and Canada. The original statute began in the 1916 convention between the U.S. and Canada. This act makes it unlawful to pursue, hunt, capture, kill, or sell any bird, living or dead. This includes feathers, eggs, or nests. There are over 800 birds on the list, which include swans, coots, cranes, plovers, robins, ravens, and many others.
Birds that are considered non-native species such as the House Sparrow and the European Starling are not protected. Some birds have limited protection and can be hunted in season, such as ducks and geese.