Yesterday, by an overwhelming margin, the mute swan bill passed the New York State legislature! This is wonderful, but it isn’t yet the final step. More work is needed to prevent mass killing and harm to the thousands of Mute Swans whose home is in New York State. Goosewatch NYC has provided the following information on steps you can take to help the swans.
STEP ONE: Please call any or all of the following.
Assembly Member Heastie: 518-455-3791
Assembly Member Cymbowitz: 718-743-4078
Assembly Member Thiele: 631-537-2583
Assembly Member Englebright: 631-751-3094
Sen. Avella: 718-357-3094
Thank them for supporting Bill A03675/SO1555 and let them know that the swans still need their help.
Ask them to encourage the governor to sign the bill.
Senator Avelia is the Senate sponsor for this bill. Please thank him for his sponsorship of the bill and ask him to urge the Senate leadership to be sure to send the bill to the governor’s desk on or before Tuesday, June 16.
Why is June 16 important?
Tuesday, June 16 is important because the legislature goes into recess on June 17. If the bill is on the governor’s desk before then, he will have ten days in which to sign or veto the bill. If he does neither, the bill will pass automatically.
If the governor receives the bill after June 16, he will have twenty days, instead of ten days, to either sign or veto the bill. However, if he does neither, the bill will be vetoed automatically. And the swans will be the losers.
So it is critical that the Senate send the bill to the governor on or before June 16.
STEP TWO: Contact Governor Cuomo.
Governor Andrew Cuomo: 1-518-474-8390
Politely remind the Governor –
One – that the people of New York State have, TWICE, on two separate occasions, spoken out through the State Legislature in support of the swans. People do not want to see these beautiful swans harmed and killed.
Two – Mute swans have graced the lakes and rivers of New York for around two hundred years, since the early 1800’s – perhaps much longer. They may, actually, be an original native North American species – this has not been conclusively proved one way or the other. They are certainly a natural part of the New York State environment; they’ve been here since the earliest days, and they belong here. This is their home.
Three – Their presence has never caused any harm. Mute Swans are being scapegoated for environmental degradation that is being caused by large-scale human activities such as industrial and agricultural run-off.
Four – As beautiful, majestic, innocent wild birds, one of the great natural treasures of New York State, mute swans need to be protected. Killing them would be a tragedy.
Five – Ask Governor Cuomo to sign the bill! Signing Bill S01555/A3675 will protect the swans from massive killing – which has very strong public opposition – and will allow for a calm, thoughtful process to take place, inviting various options and viewpoints, and finding the best way to move forward to protect the beautiful natural environment, and the plants and animals of New York State.
Sign the petition if you haven’t already.
Look for opportunities in the media and on Facebook to call for the quick signing by the Governor of Bill S01555/A3675 – to save the swans.
Thanks for your help!
Goosewatch NYC describes what the passing of this bill will accomplish for the swans:
“The legislation, sponsored by Assembly Member Cymbrowitz and Sen. Avella is crucial because it would establish a moratorium on the DEC’s (Department of Environmental Conservation) plan to declare mute swans a “prohibited invasive species” and eliminate the state’s entire population by 2025. The bill requires DEC to hold at least two public hearings and respond to all public comments before finalizing any management plan for mute swans. In addition, DEC would be required to prioritize non-lethal management techniques and include scientific evidence of projected and current environmental damage caused by the mute swan population.”
For more information, please visit:
- GooseWatch NYC: Mute Swan PlanInfo – Facebook (Regular Updates)
- The Regal Swan Foundation: Website – Facebook
- Save Mute Swans
- Friends of Animals: Take Action – Save NY’s Mute Swans
- NYCLASS: SOS! Save Our Swans!
- Wildlife Watch, Inc.: Website – Video
- In Defense of Animals
- Save our Swans
Thanks to Goosewatch NYC for contributing information to this article and for their ongoing, dedicated efforts to save New York’s swans.
Photo: Geni / Wikimedia Commons / GFDL CC-BY-SA / This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International, 3.0 Unported, 2.5 Generic, 2.0 Generic and 1.0 Generic license.