This issue initially came to my attention after speaking to a longtime GHC member who proudly owns 4 racing pigeons and has won multiple 100 mile races. Until then I had always assumed the government had some kind of plan for keeping the PaaS industry safe, not to mention racing birds.
As drones become more commonplace in this country, we can't help but ask ourselves, "what about the pigeons"?
The FAA is turning commercial drone use into a very complex regulatory environment for any organizations wanting to conduct serious business using drones. We get that. But can you please do something for the safety of our birds while you're at it?
There is no legislation that protects our birds once in the air, no law that grants them any airspace.
You heard that right. The FAA technically allows drones and carrier pigeons to occupy the same airspace.
If we could apply for air worthiness certificates on behalf of our fleet we of course would, but that wouldn't necessarily solve the problem. The FAA won't protect messenger pigeons by classifying them as autonomous UAVs, and really they need their own airspace. I realize it's a stretch (V stands for vehicle, by the way), but more needs to be done at the federal level because drones aren't going away.