S04832 Summary:

Establishes a moratorium on the taking of horseshoe crabs or the eggs of horseshoe crabs by any person, unless such taking is for scientific or educational purposes.
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S04832 Actions:

01/15/2016PRINT NUMBER 4832A
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S04832 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2015-2016 Regular Sessions
                    IN SENATE
                                     April 20, 2015
        Introduced  by  Sen. HOYLMAN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
          printed to be committed to the Committee on Environmental Conservation
          -- recommitted to  the  Committee  on  Environmental  Conservation  in
          accordance  with  Senate  Rule 6, sec. 8 -- committee discharged, bill
          amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said  commit-
        AN ACT to impose a moratorium upon the taking of horseshoe crabs and the
          eggs  thereof;  to direct the department of environmental conservation
          to study and report on the populations  of  shorebirds  and  horseshoe
          crabs; and providing for the repeal of such provisions upon expiration
          The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section 1. Legislative findings. The  legislature  hereby  finds  that
     2  each  spring  more than one million shorebirds of six species, including
     3  the red knot, stop at Long Island beaches and feed upon  horseshoe  crab
     4  eggs.  The red knot was once considered one of the state's most abundant
     5  shorebirds.  Horseshoe  crab  eggs are a critical source of food for red
     6  knots which they consume during their stopover in New  York.  Such  food
     7  source  is  necessary  for  the  red  knots to gain sufficient weight to
     8  continue their migration north  to  breeding  grounds  in  the  Canadian
     9  Arctic.    Surveys have shown that red knots migrating through the state
    10  declined by 65 percent since 2000. Thus, both  state  and  international
    11  biologists  fear that the red knot will become extinct in as few as five
    12  years.
    13    The legislature therefore declares that a moratorium on  the  harvest,
    14  landing, taking and possession of horseshoe crabs would help ensure that
    15  more  horseshoe crab eggs will be available as a food source, thus help-
    16  ing to ensure the survival of these shorebirds.
    17    § 2. (a) Notwithstanding the provisions  of  section  13-0331  of  the
    18  environmental  conservation law or any other provision of law, no person
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        S. 4832--A                          2
     1  shall take any horseshoe crab (Limulus sp.) or the eggs of any horseshoe
     2  crab from the waters or land of the state,  nor  possess  any  horseshoe
     3  crab or the eggs of a horseshoe crab, regardless of the origin thereof.
     4    (b) Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision (a) of this section,
     5  the department of environmental conservation may issue a permit:
     6    (i)  for  the  taking and possession of horseshoe crabs or the eggs of
     7  horseshoe crabs for scientific, biomedical or educational purposes only,
     8  provided that such department determines  that  the  collection  of  the
     9  horseshoe  crabs  or  the eggs of horseshoe crabs for such purposes will
    10  not cause harm to the red knot, other shorebirds or the  horseshoe  crab
    11  population; or
    12    (ii)  the  collection  of  blood  from  horseshoe crabs for biomedical
    13  purposes, provided that  the  horseshoe  crabs  are  released  otherwise
    14  unharmed to the same waters from which they were taken.
    15    §  3. (a) On or after October 1, 2021, the department of environmental
    16  conservation shall examine and evaluate the populations  of  red  knots,
    17  other shorebirds and horseshoe crabs in the state to determine whether:
    18    (i)  the population of red knots has reached 240,000 as established in
    19  the United States Shorebird Conservation Plan of May 2001 and
    20    (ii) a fisheries  management  plan,  based  on  scientific  study  and
    21  evidence,  demonstrates  that  a  more than adequate supply of horseshoe
    22  crab eggs exists to ensure population viability for both shorebirds  and
    23  horseshoe crabs.
    24    (b)  On  or  before December 31, 2021, the department of environmental
    25  conservation shall submit its findings, conclusions and  recommendations
    26  to  the  governor and the legislature with regard to the study conducted
    27  pursuant to subdivision (a) of this section.
    28    § 4. This act shall take effect immediately, and shall expire  and  be
    29  deemed repealed January 1, 2022.
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