Detailed Overview

The Central Flyway is one of four administrative flyways in North America - the others are called the Atlantic, Mississippi and Pacific. The Central Flyway Council (CFC) is comprised of a representative of agencies responsible for migratory bird management in each of 10 states, two Canadian provinces and the Northwest Territory. The states and provinces included are: Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Alberta and Saskatchewan. The Flyway's western boundary lies largely along the Continental Divide except in Montana where the boundary is east of it. This means only a portion of the western states is in the Central Flyway with the remainder in the Pacific.

Members of the Flyway Council are administrators, often a director, of the agencies they represent. The Council has established three technical committees to advise them on technical issues and provide recommendations for action. Technical Committee members are biologists or specialists from member jurisdictions. In some cases, the same biologist serves on multiple committees.

Since the Council is the principal mechanism for dialog between the states and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) on migratory bird issues, the Council selects two of its members to carry and discuss its recommendations in a consultation process with the FWS. This process includes representatives from all the flyways and frequently leads to the Service making proposals for the general public to comment on.

The Council and technical committees conduct their business in open public meetings. More than that, they each receive information and input from many partners in migratory bird management at their meetings. These partners (see the Additional Information Links) include public and private organizations from across the continent. Minutes of these meetings are kept as evidence of the business conducted and recommendations adopted.

There are many issues about migratory bird management that can only be addressed with research - things are never static in the world of migratory birds. Beyond providing political and philosophical support for specific research, the Council has contributed funds for many national and international projects. In addition, they have funded several projects of their own. In 2000, the Council spent nearly $90,000 for a wide variety of management-oriented projects.