On February 5 and 6 of 2013, the Wildlife and Hunting Heritage Conservation Council (WHHCC) held its winter meeting in Washington, D.C. Jeff Crane, President of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF), was reappointed by Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to sit on the on the Council this past August. Established in 2010, the WHHCC is an advisory group of 18 appointees, created to advise the aforementioned Departments on hunting, and wildlife resources, and activities that encourage partnership among the public, conservation community, related industries, and federal and state governments. Gary Kania, Vice President of CSF, was named as the alternate Council member.
During the meeting, the Council discussed several issues of importance to sportsmen and women, including wildlife health, the sportsmen’s community involvement on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Resource Advisory Councils (RACs), current sportsmen’s legislation, and wild horses and burros on public lands, among other topics. The Council agreed to send a letter regarding the inclusion of a designated seat for a representative of the sportsmen’s community on BLM RACs. In addition, the Council approved sending a letter to Secretary Salazar recommending actions needed by the Department of the Interior to address declining mule deer and sage grouse populations in the West. The letter was sent to Secretary Salazar on February 12.
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?