Hunting IS Conservation
I must be on a tear this morning or something, but I’ve got my feathers all ruffled over some trolling I saw on a hunting forum. (Trolling= posting negative comments for the purpose of being an asshole) Anyhow, a lot of the professional female hunters get a lot of crap from anti-hunters particularly. It pisses me off because they already get crap from the male-dominated field and have worked hard and excelled at something that is deceivingly hard. If you’ve never hunted, you should try it with a camera. Try to sneak up on a game animal, 30-80 yards should be about good. It’ll give you a glimmer of an understanding of how difficult hunting is. If you manage to harvest an animal, you still have weeks of work ahead processing and preserving meat. You’ll probably have to hike the meat out on your back, usually about 4-6 trips. Not to mention target practice, fitness and equipment maintenance throughout the rest of the year. Most people don’t realize, but hunters donate the most money to wildlife conservation of any group and the rules for hunting are designed so that the animals benefit from the culling.When I see trolling over people’s hard earned accomplishments (and food for the winter…) it makes me not want to pursue a career in hunting, which is unfortunate. More women need to blaze hunting trails, but the criticism is harsh. I know if I want to do this, I’ll have to grow a thick skin, but I wish people weren’t so ugly. I can’t understand eating meat and being anti-hunting. I get the vegan/vegetarian perspective. You don’t like to kill stuff, so you eat accordingly. But, if you eat meat; you’re kind of a hypocrite. Where do you think your hamburger came from? What kind of life did that animal have? If you like to buy organic, you can’t get better quality meat. I know a lot of people are more civilized than that, but be realistic. You can’t ignore the fact that organisms live by consuming each other.
I saw and loved this article from the Rocky Mtn Elk Foundation:
25 Reasons Why Hunting Is Conservation
Reason No. 1 why Hunting Is Conservation: In 1907, only 41,000 elk remained in North America. Thanks to the money and hard work invested by hunters to restore and conserve habitat, today there are more than 1 million.
Reason No. 2 why Hunting Is Conservation: In 1900, only 500,000 whitetails remained. Thanks to conservation work spearheaded by hunters, today there are more than 32 million.
Reason No. 3 why Hunting Is Conservation: In 1900, only 100,000 wild turkeys remained. Thanks to hunters, today there are over 7 million.
Reason No. 4 why Hunting Is Conservation: In 1901, few ducks remained. Thanks to hunters’ efforts to restore and conserve wetlands, today there are more than 44 million.
Reason No. 5 why Hunting Is Conservation: In 1950, only 12,000 pronghorn remained. Thanks to hunters, today there are more than 1.1 million.
Reason No. 6 why Hunting Is Conservation: Habitat, research and wildlife law enforcement work, all paid for by hunters, help countless non-hunted species.
Reason No. 7 why Hunting Is Conservation: Through state licenses and fees, hunters pay $796 million a year for conservation programs.*
Reason No. 8 why Hunting Is Conservation: Through donations to groups like RMEF, hunters add $440 million a year to conservation efforts.*
Reason No. 9why Hunting Is Conservation: In 1937, hunters actually requested an 11% tax on guns, ammo, bows and arrows to help fund conservation. That tax, so far, raised more than $7.2 billion for wildlife conservation.*
Reason No. 10 why Hunting Is Conservation: An 11% tax on guns, ammo, bows and arrows generates $371 million a year for conservation.*
Reason No. 11 why Hunting Is Conservation: All together, hunters pay more than $1.6 billion a year for conservation programs. No one gives more!*
Reason No. 12 why Hunting Is Conservation: Three out of four Americans approve of hunting, partly because hunters are America’s greatest positive force for conservation.
Reason No. 13 why Hunting Is Conservation: As taxpayers, hunters also fund the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service, etc.
Reason No. 14 why Hunting Is Conservation: Hunting funds conservation AND the economy, generating $38 billion a year in retail spending.*
Reason No. 15 why Hunting Is Conservation: Hunting supports 680,000 jobs, from game wardens to waitresses, biologists to motel clerks.*
Reason No. 16 why Hunting Is Conservation: Hunters are the fuel behind RMEF and its 6.3 million-plus acres of habitat conservation. More than 95 percent of our 196,000 members are passionate hunters.
Reason No. 17 why Hunting Is Conservation: A wildlife management tool, hunting helps balance wildlife populations with what the land can support, limits crop damage and curtails disease outbreaks.
Reason No. 18 why Hunting Is Conservation: Hunters help manage growing numbers of predators such as cougars, bears, coyotes and wolves. Our government spends millions to control predators and varmints while hunters have proven more than willing to pay for that opportunity.
Reason No. 19 why Hunting Is Conservation: Hunting has major value for highway safety. For every deer hit by a motorist, hunters take six.
Reason No. 20 why Hunting Is Conservation: Deer collisions kill 200 motorists and cost $10 billion a year. Imagine costs without hunting!
Reason No. 21 why Hunting Is Conservation: Hunters provide for conservation—and for their families. Hunting is a healthy way to connect with nature and eat the world’s most organic, lean, free-range meat.
Reason No. 22 why Hunting Is Conservation: Hunter numbers are down, while hunter spending for conservation is up. Unequaled devotion!
Reason No. 23 why Hunting Is Conservation: Avid hunter Theodore Roosevelt created our national forests and grasslands and forever protected 230 million acres for wildlife and the public to use and enjoy.
Reason No. 24 why Hunting Is Conservation: With funding from hunters, RMEF helped restore wild elk herds in six states and provinces.
Reason No. 25 why Hunting Is Conservation: As society loses its ties to wildlife and conservation, the bonds with nature formed by hunting are the greatest hope for creating the next generation of true conservationists.
*financial info via America’s Sporting Heritage: Fueling the American Economy (January 2013) & Hunting in America: An Economic Force for Conservation (January 2013)