The North American Model of Wildlife Conservation

The North American Model of Wildlife Conservation is the world’s most successful system of policies and laws to restore and safeguard fish and wildlife and their habitats through sound science and active management.

Hunting and angling are the cornerstones of the North American Model with sportsmen and women serving as the foremost funders of conservation. Through self-imposed excise taxes on hunting, shooting, archery and angling equipment, and a tax on boating fuels, these conservationists have generated more than $45 billion for wildlife and habitat conservation since 1937.

How does the model work? Manufacturers of hunting and shooting arms and ammunition, archery equipment and fishing equipment pay an excise tax on the equipment they produce. These funds, combined with a tax on motorboat fuels, are collected by the federal government and distributed to each state’s fish and wildlife agency. State fish and wildlife agencies then combine these funds with monies collected through the sale of hunting and fishing licenses to conserve, manage and enhance fish and wildlife and their habitats and to create fish and wildlife recreational and educational opportunities.

Though sportsmen-funded conservation efforts have focused on wildlife that is legally hunted and fished, the emphasis of the management is on restoring and conserving habitats that benefit a wide range of fish and wildlife including non-hunted species as well as benefiting everyone who enjoys nature.
Currently, there are no alternative, dedicated funding systems in place (beyond excise taxes and license fees) to help support fish and wildlife conservation. Without the most traditional outdoor users’ contributions or new funding streams, America’s conservation legacy could be in peril. (Reprint: National Shooting Sports Foundation)

Hunting participation has seriously dropped over the past five decades. The average age of the American Elk hunter is 56 and aging. Without a resurgence in our youth into the Sport of Hunting and a commitment of the 25 to 45 age hunter to support hunting and conservation organizations, our Hunting Heritage will die. We must begin to teach the younger generations the history of Wildlife Management and Challenge them to give of their time and resources. The CMDA Board is committed to the recruitment and retention of hunters. Our Youth Hunter program is praised by the Colorado Division of Parks and Wildlife. We would ask you as a Hunter and Sportsmen to join the CMDA and volunteer to help preserve our Hunting Heritage.

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