America’s national monuments not only enable long-term conservation of cultural sites and scientifically valuable resources; they also can conserve some of the best hunting and fishing in America. To accomplish this objective, however, monument designations must be pursued in a way that addresses the priorities and values of sportsmen and women. Paramount in achieving this outcome is a process that is locally driven, transparent, incorporates the science-based management and conservation of important fish and wildlife habitat, and upholds continued opportunities to hunt and fish within the boundaries of a proposed monument. These tenets must be followed in order to generate widespread support by sportsmen and women for a national monument proposed in an area currently open to hunting and fishing:
- The monument proposal must be developed through a public process – one that includes hunters and anglers, as well as appropriate state and local governments.
- The monument proclamation must clearly stipulate that management authority over fish and wildlife populations will be retained by state fish and wildlife agencies.
- Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service lands must remain under the authority of a multiple-use focused land management agency.
- Reasonable public access must be retained to enable continued hunting and fishing opportunities.
- The input and guidance of hunters and anglers must be included in management plans for national monuments.
- Important fish and wildlife habitat must be protected.
- The proposal must enjoy support from local sportsmen and women.
- Sporting opportunities must be upheld and the historical and cultural significance of hunting and fishing explicitly acknowledged in the monument proclamation.
In conjunction with Trout Unlimited, Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership and dozens of other conservation groups and outdoors businesses, BHA produced a report on national monuments to highlight the incredible hunting and fishing values these protected areas have to offer.