A writer from Pennsylvania recently authored an article that addresses hunting, conservation funding and the current political climate including the Second Amendment. His thoughts are a good reminder regarding who pays for land conservation and wildlife management.
“In the early part of the twentieth century, hunters saw that wildlife could not tolerate the absence of bag limits, year ’round open seasons, the pressure of urban development, and other things that were a threat to continued, abundant, and accessible wildlife. So hunters became politically active,” wrote Steve Sorensen. “They appealed to state legislatures to create game and fish departments, to establish seasons and bag limits, and to pass into law an 11% excise tax on firearms, ammunition and other hunting gear. This tax is unseen, built into the price of these products, and it has created a fund that is distributed to the states (based on the number of hunting licenses sold) for the management of wildlife. It is hunters who provide that money. It is not nature photographers. It is not bird watchers. It is not the wealthy through their charitable giving. It is hunters. Wildlife in North American thrives thanks to hunters.”
Go here to read the rest of Sorensen’s article.