Editorial Notes
References in Text

Prior to the addition to this subchapter of the provisions relating to preservation of the golden eagle, referred to in subsec. (a), means prior to Oct. 24, 1962, the date such provisions were enacted by Pub. L. 87–884 as an amendment of this section and section 668a of this title.


1972—Pub. L. 92–535 designated existing provisions as subsec. (a), substituted “shall knowingly, or with wanton disregard for the consequences of his act take” for “shall take”, increased fine and imprisonment terms from $500 or six months to $5,000 or one year, and inserted provisions that a second conviction carry a penalty of $10,000 fine or imprisonment of not more than two years, that each taking constitute a separate offense, and that informers be rewarded one-half of the fine not exceeding $2,500, and added subsecs. (b) and (c).

1962—Pub. L. 87–884 extended prohibitions against the enumerated acts to the golden eagle and changed proviso by substituting “bald eagle”, “June 8, 1940” and “and that nothing in said sections shall be construed to prohibit possession or transportation of any golden eagle, alive or dead, or any part, nest, or egg thereof, lawfully taken prior to the addition to said sections of the provisions relating to preservation of the golden eagle” for “such eagle,” “the effective date of said sections” and “but the proof of such taking shall lie upon the accused in any prosecution under said sections”, respectively.

1959—Pub. L. 86–70 struck out “except the Territory of Alaska,” after “subject to the jurisdiction thereof,”.

Statutory Notes and Related Subsidiaries
Short Title

Act June 8, 1940, ch. 278, 54 Stat. 250, which is classified to this subchapter, is popularly known as the “Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act” and also as the “Bald Eagle Protection Act”.

Legislative Intent

Enacting clause of act June 8, 1940, provided:

“Whereas the Continental Congress in 1782 adopted the bald eagle as the national symbol; and

“Whereas the bald eagle thus became the symbolic representation of a new nation under a new government in a new world; and

“Whereas by that act of Congress and by tradition and custom during the life of this Nation, the bald eagle is no longer a mere bird of biological interest but a symbol of the American ideals of freedom; and

“Whereas the bald eagle is now threatened with extinction: Therefore

“Be it enacted * * *”

, etc.

Executive Documents
Transfer of Functions

Enforcement functions of Secretary or other official in Department of the Interior related to compliance with this subchapter with respect to pre-construction, construction, and initial operation of transportation system for Canadian and Alaskan natural gas transferred to Federal Inspector, Office of Federal Inspector for Alaska Natural Gas Transportation System, until first anniversary of date of initial operation of Alaska Natural Gas Transportation System, see Reorg. Plan No. 1 of 1979, §§ 102(e), 203(a), 44 F.R. 33663, 33666, 93 Stat. 1373, 1376, effective July 1, 1979, set out in the Appendix to Title 5, Government Organization and Employees. Office of Federal Inspector for the Alaska Natural Gas Transportation System abolished and functions and authority vested in Inspector transferred to Secretary of Energy by section 3012(b) of Pub. L. 102–486, set out as an Abolition of Office of Federal Inspector note under section 719e of Title 15, Commerce and Trade. Functions and authority vested in Secretary of Energy subsequently transferred to Federal Coordinator for Alaska Natural Gas Transportation Projects by section 720d(f) of Title 15.