The Ornithological Council updates its Import Guide

The Ornithological Council has released an updated version of A Guide to the Processes and Procedures for Importing Bird Products into the United State for Scientific Research and Display. This extensive guide, which was thoroughly updated in 2020, provides a step-by-step guide for ornithologists importing birds or bird products into the U.S. for research and display, including template documents and checklists to follow. The recent updates were made to ensure that the guide remains up to date as permitting requirements and system change.

The Import Guide is available to download for free from the Ornithological Council’s website at, as a service to the ornithological community. It contains sections on the import permitting requirements of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, USDA APHIS, and the Centers for Disease Control, as well as information about planning your travel and how to ship your specimen. It leads the ornithologist through the entire process, from paperwork to port and beyond. In addition to the hard-and-fast rules and requirements, this guide also offers best practices and helpful hints.

The guide is updated regularly as agency permitting requirements change, keeping ornithologists in compliance with the many laws and regulations governing the import of bird products.

If you have any questions after reading the Import Guide or find areas that require further clarification, please contact Laura Bies (, Executive Director of the Ornithological Council