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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
An interesting study just released by USFWS detailing expenditures of sportsmen and women. Do take note that this does not differentiate between residents and non-residents. Also, did you guys know that a Univ. of North Dakota graduate is now the director at USFWS :D !!!!!!

Wildlife-related recreation continues to be popular in America, with 39
percent of all U.S. residents 16 years old and older participating in
activities such as hunting, fishing, and birdwatching, according to
preliminary results from the 2001 ANational Survey of Fishing, Hunting,
and Wildlife Associated Recreation,@ conducted by the Interior Department's
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

In 2001, more than 82 million Americans engaged in wildlife-related
recreation in the U.S. B an increase of five million in comparison with the
last survey conducted in 1996. These recreationists spent more than $110
billion pursuing their activities. These expenditures accounted for 1.1%
of the gross domestic product, a considerable contribution to the U.S.
economy.

AWildlife is an American icon," said Service Director Steve Williams. A
Wildlife-related recreationists have always been staunch supporters of
wildlife conservation in America. Wildlife recreation significantly
benefits our economy, creates jobs, and enhances our standard of living."
Fishing is one of the Nation's favorite pastimes, with 34 million anglers
age 16 or older, each spending an average of 16 days fishing in 2001.
Anglers spent more than $35 billion on trips, equipment, and other items
for their sport, averaging more than $1,046 apiece.

More than 28 million people went freshwater fishing, while nine million
people went saltwater fishing. The Great Lakes, one of the most widely
fished freshwater areas, attracted 2 million anglers.

While the number of anglers held steady compared to the last Survey in
1996, expenditures declined by 17 percent.

Meanwhile, 13 million Americans age 16 and older hunted an average of 17.5
days each in 2001. They spent more than $20 billion on their activities and
equipment, or $1,581 apiece.

Nearly ll million hunters sought big game such as deer and elk on l53
million days. Roughly five million hunters pursued small game, including
squirrels and rabbits, on 60 million days.

Three million migratory bird hunters spent 29 million days hunting for
birds such as doves and
ducks. And l million hunters spent l9 million days hunting other animals
such as raccoons and
woodchucks.

Although the number of all hunters declined by seven percent from 1996 to
2001, the number of big game and migratory hunters held steady. The
declines were in small game (-22%) and other animal hunting (-31%).
Hunters= expenditures did not change significantly from 1996 to 2001.

More than 66 million adults B 31 percent of all Americans B participated in
feeding, observing, and photographing wildlife and spent $40 billion.

Twenty-two million people, or 33 percent of this total, took outings of one
mile or more away from home to participate in these activities. Sixty-three
million, or 95 percent, enjoyed wildlife-related activities around their
homes.

Some 54 million enthusiasts fed birds and other wildlife around the home,
while more than 42 million observed wildlife and 14 million photographed
wildlife around the home. Almost l3 million people maintained plantings or
natural areas for the benefit of wildlife around the home, and 11 million
visited public parks or natural areas to enjoy wildlife within a mile of
home.

From 1991 to 1996, the number of people observing, feeding, and
photographing wildlife
increased by five percent, while their expenditures remained constant at
$510 apiece.

The U.S. Bureau of Census interviewed 80,000 households in the United
States to determine participants in wildlife-associated activities. From
this initial phase, 30,000 sportsmen and sportswomen and 15,000 wildlife
watchers were selected for detailed interviews about their participation
and expenditures in 2001.

Preliminary State specificdata will be available in June. The final
National report will be released in October 2002; individual state reports
will be released starting in November 2002.

The 2001 National Preliminary Survey of Fishing, Hunting,
and Wildlife Associated Recreation is posted at <http://federalaid.fws.gov/
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
This is a response to study detailed above. Truly frightening... :eek:

The End is in Sight," Says The Fund for Animals, as New Government Report Charts the Continuing Decline of Hunting in America
5/21/2002, The Fund for Animals

SILVER SPRING, MD -- Proclaiming that "The end of hunting is in sight," The Fund for Animals, a national animal protection group, is celebrating yesterday's release of preliminary results from a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) report showing that the number of hunters in the U.S. declined by 7% between 1996 and 2001. During the same five years, the number of wildlife watchers, people who enjoy wildlife without harming them, increased by 5%.
This latest in a series of reports issued every five years documents a continuing trend. According to the USFWS, in 1985 there were 16.7 million hunters in the U.S, while in 2001 there were only 13 million, a decline of 22% over fifteen years. This led Heidi Prescott, national director of The Fund for Animals, to comment that, "These are long-term trends, not just a blip in the numbers, and we're delighted to see that more and more people are trading their guns for cameras."

The USFWS results showed the largest declines in "small game" (22%) and "other animal" hunting (31%). According to Norm Phelps, a program coordinator at The Fund and author of the report Body Count: The Death Toll in America's War on Wildlife, "The decline is taking place primarily among hunters of small game. Since they kill many more animals than big game hunters, we can expect the total number of hunting victims to decline as well."

Michael Markarian, executive vice president of The Fund, noted that, "Hunters now make up only 4.6% of the population, compared to the 31% who are wildlife watchers. It's time for the Fish and Wildlife Service and state wildlife agencies to start paying attention to their own numbers and stop catering to a tiny special interest group. Wildlife belongs to everyone, not just the few people who hunt."

Concluded Prescott, "Over a decade ago, T.A. Heberlein and E.J. Thomson, experts on hunting demographics at the University of Wisconsin, predicted that by 2050, sport hunting could well cease to exist. This latest report shows that they were right on target. The end of hunting is no more than a generation away."
 

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That is a scary report...hopefully things can change. I'd like to try and see them stop me from hunting, and I'll still be kicking in 2050!

Why do you guys think small game hunting has declined so much? Just thinking about it a little made me wonder if it is due in part to fee hunting and commercialization. You look at the most popular small game species such as pheasants and other upland birds around the country (quail) and those are the species that you see the most access fees around. IE it's a lot harder to be successful hunting those if you don't have the money.

As soon as hunting becomes a sport for the rich it will become non-existant. Look at fox hunting in england.
 

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Access would be on the list.

Urbanization of America must be near the top of the list. In many parts of the United States, strip malls, golf cources, and new housing developments have destroyed more hunting opportunity for many hunting families than commercial guides ever will.

One of my best early Canada goose season fields is now houses another is a church.

It is not just living in the bigger city areas - it is also how many close relatives are still back on the farm. My parents come from ND farming backgrounds and many of my friends in the Twin Cities can say the same thing (MN, ND, Iowa). The next generation of kids are now further removed from farming and rural activities.

I have also placed a few posts on this site discussing how difficult it is to get rural ND kids (nephews, nieces, and friend's kids) hunting a lot. Play station games, jobs, sports all compete for time. Small town ND has sports games on Saturdays now. Waterfowl opener, pheasant opener - I bet 50% of the small ND towns have a high school football game at 1 pm those days. Difficult to do both.

Finally, PETA and their associates are looking at those declining numbers and drooling. Here is a post I put on regarding Canadian waterfowl hunting:

http://www.nodakoutdoors.com/members/ph ... highlight=

These organizations look to divide and conquer hunters. Go after cougar hunting, bear hunting with bait or dogs, trapping, etc... They look for areas that are weak, unorganized, or lack universal hunter support. By chipping away at these fringe segments of outdoor sports they hope to eliminate it all. So when you see California ban mountain lion hunting and say not important here (in ND or MN) -- you could not be further from the truth in the bigger picture of things.
 
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