Elk NetworkResearch: Hunting Is Conservation, but so is Recreational Shooting

Conservation | May 7, 2019

Thanks to an 11 percent excise tax on guns and ammunition, hunting is a major funding source for conservation. It is a fee hunters pay every time they purchase a box of ammo or a new rifle. That excise tax has generated more than $12 billion dollars for conservation work since the Pittman-Robertson (P-R) Act went into effect way back in 1937.

Not to be overlooked in this conservation equation is the contribution made by recreational shooters as well as those who buy guns for work, home or personal protection, collecting and gifts (some of which may be intended for hunting). The same P-R tax is also collected from these purchases and goes to conservation.

Research conducted by Southwick Associates shows that at least 22.5 percent of excise taxes paid on firearm and ammunition sales in 2015 can be credited to hunting-related activities. Translation: plenty of other gun-and ammunition-buying folks are doing their part to contribute to conservation, too.

(Note: the data does not highlight conservation revenue by the sale of archery equipment.)

(Photo source: Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation &  graphic source: Southwick Associates)