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The Shotem' and Caughtem' Blog is the place to find the latest reviews and commentary on gear, destinations, conditions, events, and general knowledge to inform our readers and give our opinions to anyone listening.

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Wednesday, 27 March 2013 21:41

Hunting and Fishing is an Economic and Conservation Driver

We at Shotem and Caughtem believe that without a healthy and robust sport hunting and fishing industry that the economy would lose yet another valuable resource in the fight to conserve our natural resources.  We searched the web to help find valuable facts that show just how great these industries are not only for their economic value but in their efforts to help sustain and conserve our natural resources.  Here is just a short list of all the great things these industries provide and just a few of those that help make sure the sport continues for future generations.  If you feel we missed a vital part or aspect to these industries please leave us a comment in the section below.

State natural resource agencies manage fish and wildlife for the benefit of all citizens, regardless of whether they hunt or fish. Yet, sportsmen who buy licenses and purchase equipment provide most of their budgets. Despite the significant contributions by sportsmen and their supporting industries, wildlife agencies constantly hear the old, worn-out argument about “jobs versus the environment.” The fact is, employment, economy and environment all start with “E.” Healthy natural resources create jobs, enhance the economy and support both rural and urban communities that properly manage those resources.

In 2011, 90.1 million U.S. residents 16 years of age and older, roughly 38% of the population, participated in wildlife-related recreational activities.  The recreationial sport lovers spent 145 billion dollars on their fishing, hunting and wildlife watching.  This includes permits, expenditures, passes etc.  Overall hunting, fishing and other outdoor-related activities contribute an estimated $730 billion each year to the U.S. economy and one in 20 jobs.

The fisheries program of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, state agencies and other conservation groups, contributes $3.6 billion to the nation’s economy and supports 68,000  jobs.  The federal agency’s National Fish Hatchery System generates $900 million in industrial output and $550 million in retail sales. Hatchery programs generate 8,000 jobs and $256 million in salaries and wages.  The National Fish Passage Program works with partners to reopen an average of 890 miles of river habitat annually, which has an economic value of $483 million and supports 11,000 jobs. That is more than $542,000 in economic benefit per stream mile restored.  

We had trouble finding the overall stats that show the money invested in land and wildlife conservation measures by many of the groups that do so much to make sure we sustain these sports and our industry.  Organizations such as Ducks Unlimited, Quail Unlimited, Pheasants Forever, Fishery programs both private and public, and governmental programs such as allocations in the Farm Bill, and the National Wildlife Federation just to name a few. 

Unfortunately due to the economic downturn and the recent decisions in Washington many of the conservation efforts provided by the revenue generated by this industry will have an impact on these types of conservation efforts.  It will be up to us as an industry to stand up and support these organizations so that we can continue to enjoy the sports we dedicate so much of our hard earned money.  We hope that one day Shotem and Caughtem might be added to the list of organizations that help provide support to the cause we all love........the great outdoors!