Elk NetworkTop Ten Reasons Why – Hunting Is Conservation

Conservation | January 20, 2020

Hunting…the act of chasing or searching for game or other wild animals.

Conservation…the act of using or managing natural resources wisely.

These two terms are historically, biologically, financially, physically and scientifically connected.

Here are the top ten reasons why Hunting Is Conservation.

One…hunting provides funding for conservation.

Hunting licenses and fees combined with donations to conservation organizations like the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and an 11 percent excise tax on guns, ammunition and archery equipment total $1.6 billion in annual funding for land and wildlife conservation work from coast to coast.

Two…hunting helped restore ailing wildlife species.

In the early 1900s, many wildlife species were on the brink of elimination. Hunters and conservationists successfully lobbied to do away with the commercial harvest of animals. They also implemented strict regulations that closely monitored wildlife numbers, allowing populations to rebound.

Three…hunting is key to wildlife management.

Hunting is the number-one tool used to manage predator and prey alike. Biologists create dates, quotas and other specific hunting regulations regarding different species and then turn to hunters as a way for them to monitor and manage healthy population numbers.

Four…hunting assists biologists learn more about wildlife diseases.

To better understand chronic wasting disease and other wildlife ailments, game managers create special hunts and rely on hunters to assist them in gathering samples so they can better understand the size and scope of disease outbreaks.

Five…hunting provides funding for research.

Money generated by the sale of hunting licenses and fees, coupled with donations to wildlife conservation groups, allows private, state and federal researchers to learn more about wildlife migration, recruitment, habitat use, predation and other scientific studies.

Six…hunting benefits non-game species.

Funds generated by hunters allow biologists and scientists to manage and learn more about an array of non-hunted species including small mammals, raptors, reptiles, songbirds, insects and even plant species.

Seven…hunting fosters an appreciation of nature.

Hunters develop an enhanced knowledge of and respect for wildlife as they spend time in the mountains, on lakes and rivers, and in forests in search of their quarry. They witness wildlife movement and behavior, experience weather patterns and develop a profound appreciation for the wild world around them.

Eight…hunting promotes a healthy lifestyle.

It takes a lot of effort and exercise to acquire healthy, organic nutrition. Hunters often hike miles of mountain ridges to make their way deep into the backcountry in a quest to fill the freezer. And when they do so, wild game provides meals that are much lower in fat and cholesterol than store-bought meat.

Nine…hunting combats poaching.

Hunters are the first line of defense in identifying those who illegally kill and waste wild game. They recognize suspicious or unlawful activity and report it to game wardens and other authorities.

Ten…hunting boosts the economy.

Data shows that not only do sportsmen and women contribute nearly $8 million a day to support wildlife agencies and conservation, but they spend approximately $38 billion in retail annually. Those dollars support more than 680,000 jobs and generate billions more in local, state and federal taxes.

When you size it up and look at the big picture, it clearly shows that Hunting Is Conservation.