CSF Kicks off Virtual Summer Educational Series – Traditional Wildlife Management in a Modern World

Contact: Ellary TuckerWilliams, Rocky Mountain States Senior Coordinator

Highlights

  • CSF held its first of four Virtual Summer Educational Series to help legislators, industry and sporting conservation partners stay engaged and up to speed on timely topics within the outdoor sporting community.
  • Starting in the West, CSF hosted an hour-long panel discussion titled “Traditional Wildlife Management in a Modern World” in which the discussion focused on anti-sporting western ballot initiative, the impact on state wildlife agencies, and ways to counter these blatant attacks on our outdoor sporting community.
  • Despite being regionally focused, the western virtual panel discussion was extremely well attended by over 70 total participants from around the country representing 31 states, including legislators or their staff representing 8 states.

Why it Matters: Despite the outdoor sporting community’s well-established conservation legacy, the symbiotic relationship between sustainable wildlife management and hunters, anglers, and trappers has been tainted by misinformation and emotional propaganda from the anti-sporting community. The increased prevalence and severity of ballot initiatives focused on chipping away at our shared outdoor heritage highlights the pervasive nature of the anti-sportspeople’s rhetoric in today’s culture. CSF hosted an hour-long virtual panel discussion titled “Traditional Wildlife Management in a Modern World” in which the discussion focused on anti-sporting western ballot initiatives, the impact on state wildlife agencies, and ways to counter these blatant attacks on our outdoor sporting community.

While we are all excited about the world slowly returning to some semblance of normalcy in the face of COVID-19, the pandemic has taught many of us the utility and appeal of hosting virtual events. While travel costs used to be a deterring factor, the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) is not alone in capitalizing on the simple fact that virtual events allow for people on the East Coast, West Coast and everywhere in between to collectively participate in a single event. With this year’s state legislative sessions wrapped up around the country, CSF kicked off its first of four Virtual Summer Educational Series to help legislators, industry and sporting conservation partners stay engaged and up to speed on timely topics within the outdoor sporting community.

Starting in the West, CSF hosted an hour-long panel discussion titled “Traditional Wildlife Management in a Modern World” in which the discussion focused on anti-sporting western ballot initiative trends, the impact on state wildlife agencies, and ways to counter these blatant attacks on our outdoor sporting community. Panelists included:

  1. Impact of Ballot Initiatives on State Agencies - Brian Wolfer, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife
  2. Oregon Initiative Petition 13 - Amy Patrick, Oregon Hunters Association
  3. Eye of the Storm: Furbearer Management and Ballot Initiatives - Dan Gates, Colorado Trapper and Predator Hunters Association
  4. Wildlife Councils - Peter Churchbourne, Hunters’ Leadership Forum
  5. Right to Hunt, Fish & Trap State Constitutional Amendment - State Representative Judy Boyle, Idaho District 9

Despite being regionally focused, the western virtual panel discussion was extremely well attended by over 70 total participants from around the country representing 31 states, including several legislators or their staff representing 8 states.

Representing the Southeast, the second of CSF’s Virtual Summer Educational Series will be on July 26, titled “Generating Enhanced Funding for State-Based Conservation.” For more information, contact John Culclasure at jculclasure@congressionalsportsmen.org.

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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?

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