Missing the Point About Conservation

For many years I’ve supported conservation organizations and believed that I was making a difference by doing so. Like most of my friends in conservation I have done so without really worrying about what I was getting in return. I’ve believed that the cause helped wildlife and helped to minimize attacks on hunting
Recently I received an email that made me wonder about some of my hunting brethren.
 
Here’s what (name deleted) had to say. 
“My Friend and I are Traditional Archery Hunters and interested in becoming members of MDF, we are both retired and belong to the Diablo Bowmen Archery Club in Clayton California.
I live in Discovery Bay, and (also deleted) lives in Magalia near Paradise.
For years I have belonged to Phesants Forever, Doves & Quail Unlimited, Ducks Unlimited, North American Hunting Club, California Deer Assoc. California Wildfowl Assoc., none of which has ever helped me in my quest for hunting property access. All they seem to do is ask me for more money and support, but they have never ever enabled me to get hunting access.
 
So why am I writing to you? I’d like to be up front and ask if joining MDF will lead to us being able to gain access to hunting areas either open to members of MDF or Public Access ? This may sound a bit selfish but to tell you the truth every one of the “Clubs” organization I listed above have just been a magazine subscriptionand a junk mail source, to which I “donated” moneies not recognized by the IRS as donations.
 
As I am now retired, I like to gets some return on my investments.
 
So bottom line should we join?

(name deleted)”

Needless to say I responded with a “no.” Based upon this man’s statement, he will be no happier with MDF than he has been with the other groups he has previously joined. This man does not understand that we need to conserve our resources in order to enjoy them.

He should have read the mission of each of these organizations and if he had, he might not have sent this email.

By putting money and effort back into the resource we are making an attempt to assure our activities produce a net gain for wildlife. We could do nothing, but over time the resource would dwindle until neither hunters or anybody else would be able to enjoy the pleasure of viewing, hunting and eating wild game.

Access would be worthless if there were no game animals to hunt.

It would be hard to feel good about ourselves if we did nothing but take and never gave back. For me, giving back is an important part of feeling valued and happy.

We’ll never know for sure the effectiveness of our efforts, but at least we know we tried and for me that’s good enough for me.

 

2 thoughts on “Missing the Point About Conservation

  1. The man had what I consider to be legitimate questions as well as concerns. He also missed the point of what those organizations are about, for years.
    I do, or have belonged to most of them at one time or another. I suppose that I am lucky in a sense. I left California years ago. Colorado has a lot of public property that can be hunted. Albeit low quality in most cases compared to private land. But, I was able to get out enough to pass on the hunting heritage to my children and many others.
    That, and helping to keep our wild lands wild is enough for me.

    Shoot Straight & Be Safe!

  2. I agree. We need to support all of these organizations and give back to the sport, wildlife and environment where we love to spend time. These groups also are very important political advocates and representatives for hunting, fishing and the sporting life.

    I did want to share that a relatively new California waterfowl organization called Valley Waterfowl (http://valleywaterfowl.org/) formed for precisely the reasons mentioned by those inquiring hunters — to provide more hunting opportunities in addition to conservation efforts. With their membership dues and fundraising dinners, Valley Waterfowl leases duck blinds to provide more actual hunting opportunities for their membership. Hunts are provided to members based on a lottery system, not unlike the state refuge system.

    They’ve been adding clubs and blinds every year. The nonproft group is based in Lodi, Calif., and was started, as I understand it, by some Lodi policemen, passionate waterfowl hunters who grew frustrated at supporting waterfowl conservation organizations without seeing any increases in hunting opportunities for the non-attached hunter.

    I’m a member of the group, but have never hunted their property. It’s an innovative idea and the group’s membership seems to be growing.

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