WASHINGTON – A decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to expand hunting and angling opportunities on 21 national wildlife refuges across the country drew praise from Backcountry Hunters & Anglers, which works on increasing sportsmen’s access to places to hunt and fish, particularly on publicly owned lands.
USFWS Director Dan Ashe announced the proposal, which was published in the Federal Register today and which would modify existing regulations for more than 100 other refuges and federal wetland management districts. Sportsmen welcomed the good news.
“I’ve hunted waterfowl my entire life on national wildlife refuges that have been funded almost exclusively by sportsmen’s dollars,” said BHA Executive Director Land Tawney. “Refuges are just that: places that provide much-needed solitude and challenge our members crave. Access and opportunity are critical to Americans’ continued ability to enjoy our time-honored traditions of hunting and fishing, and likewise they are central to the mission of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers.
Backcountry Hunters & Anglers welcomes Secretary of Interior Sally Jewell’s announcement of landscape level greater sage-grouse plans for Bureau of Land Management lands in 11 Western states.
Built upon years of historic collaboration between state governors and wildlife management agencies, public land management agencies, sportsmen, ranchers, energy companies and other key stakeholders, these tailored plans set a new standard for meaningful conservation on lands that support the majority of the birds’ habitat.
By addressing the needs of sportsmen, ranchers, and businesses, these conservation plans will sustain the resource and provide greater certainty to multiple uses like energy development while balancing the need to safeguard important wildlife habitat.
The following video highlights some of BHA’s ground efforts for sage-grouse:
WASHINGTON - A highly anticipated rule that would enhance critical fish and wildlife habitat, improve the nation's supply of drinking water and restore clarity to the federal Clean Water Act was finalized this morning, eliciting praise from business owners and sportsmen's groups, including Backcountry Hunters & Anglers.
Today's announcement by the administration concludes a multi-stakeholder process aimed at eliminating confusion surrounding the scope of the Clean Water Act. The resulting "Waters of the U.S." rule reflects a lengthy and comprehensive vetting process, including more than 1 million public comments. Widely supported by citizens, sportsmen and outdoor-focused businesses, it represents a practical approach that addresses the needs of both industry and the general populace.
WASHINGTON – Senate legislation that would establish two wilderness areas on federal lands in New Mexico would secure critical fish and game habitat and benefit sportsmen and the region’s economy, said Backcountry Hunters & Anglers, which has been engaged in a decade-long effort to conserve the fish- and wildlife-rich landscapes.
The Cerros del Norte Conservation Act (S. 1240), introduced by U.S. Sens. Martin Heinrich and Tom Udall earlier this month, was deliberated this afternoon at a hearing convened by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee on Public Lands, Forests and Mining. The bill would designate the Cerro del Yuta Wilderness and Rio San Antonio Wilderness within the Río Grande del Norte National Monument in northern New Mexico.
The national monument encompasses backcountry lands and waters inhabited by a diversity of wildlife, including elk, mule deer and bighorn sheep. Sportsmen are quick to point to the importance of the proposed wilderness areas as a migratory corridor for wildlife and the overall role played by these public lands in sustaining the outdoors-based economy central to the fiscal health of New Mexico and the Rocky Mountain West.
Here’s a little sample with our Executive Director’s column and cool story from Hannah Ryan, one of our Montana Chapter board members, about stocking trout in an alpine, wilderness lake using her family’s pack goats.
Also inside is an instructional backcountry first aid piece as well as a fly fishing essay from David James Duncan, award-winning author of The River Why and The Brothers K.
Join Backcountry Hunters & Anglers today to promptly receive your copy in the mail, and quartlery issues for the next year!