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Banding Together for Waterfowl

New survey reveals sportsmen passing on America's hunting legacy to the next generation

  • photo by Nancy Myrick
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A recent survey reveals that America's hunting heritage continues to be passed down by sportsmen to children across the country.

The data, collected by HunterSurvey.com, ShooterSurvey.com and AnglerSurvey.com, show that a large portion of the outdoor community has taken time to introduce a child to hunting and fishing. The data reveal that over 45 percent of hunters have taken a young person hunting in the past 12 months. While over half of these young people were the hunter's son or daughter, results show that 29 percent were a young relative and the other 18 percent were either an unrelated child or part of an outing with a Boy Scout troop or another youth organization.

"Ducks Unlimited understands how important it is to ensure today's youth are able to discover and enjoy all that hunting and the outdoors have to offer. That is one reason DU's Greenwings program was created," DU Chief Conservation Officer Paul Schmidt said. "When introducing children to hunting, it is equally important to instill conservation values."

Whether it is through the creation of the Federal Duck Stamp or through partnering with federal and state governments on conservation programs, sportsmen play an active role in conserving waterfowl and other wildlife habitat. However, many of the conservation programs that sportsmen support, including the North American Wetlands Conservation Act, are facing severe budget cuts. These cuts not only threaten America's outdoor legacy, but also could negatively impact countless local economies and small businesses that depend on the outdoor sporting community for revenue.

"America is currently at a crossroads and Congress has some tough decisions to make," DU Director of the Governmental Affairs Office Scott Sutherland said. "DU understands how essential it is that our nation reduces its national deficit, but it is important that America's outdoor legacy and programs that are very efficient budget-wise do not become collateral damage during the process."

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