Contact: John Culclasure, Southeastern States Assistant Director
On August 25, the Co-Chairs of the Ohio Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus (Caucus) led a virtual meeting with conservation partners to discuss issues impacting Ohio’s sportsmen and women.
Senator Sean O’Brien, Senator Michael Rulli, and Representative Gil Blair, discussed their recent field day with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and outlined plans for Caucus activities during the remainder of the year. Following the successful Caucus Reception in January, the Caucus significantly increased its membership and had plans for multiple events this year that were unfortunately canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The virtual meeting provided a venue for Caucus leadership and partners to interact and communicate about sportsmen’s issues even though social distancing precluded an in-person meeting.
The DNR provided an update on the sale of hunting, fishing and trapping licenses during the pandemic. License sales for residents have increased this year, and the trend is expected to continue during the fall hunting seasons. Coupled with the increase in firearm and ammunition sales this year, strong license sales will benefit the Buckeye State as the DNR is primarily funded through the “user pays, public benefits” American System of Conservation Funding.
Partners, including the Ohio Conservation Federation and Pheasants Forever/Quail Forever, discussed efforts to address invasive species, including Asian carp, public land access improvement initiatives, habitat improvement programs, Farm Bill implementation, and Recovering America’s Wildlife Act.
Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation Southeastern Assistant Director John Culclasure reported on the Great American Outdoors Act which was signed into law on August 4th, the 17th Annual NASC Sportsman-Legislator Summit, which will be virtual this year, and National Hunting and Fishing Day which is September 26th this year.
Studies conducted at both the state and federal level have found that the number of hunters and trappers have been on a generally declining trend over the past several decades. To increase recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) of hunters and trappers, which initiative do you think would have the greatest impact?