OPINION: What’s good for prisoners may not be good for hunters

In 2022, FWP established a new pheasant release program: “... which aims to engage youth in the sport of hunting, promote hunter success, and provide additional hunting opportunities for hunters of all ages by releasing up to 50,000 pheasants" per year. The legislature approved $1 million annually for this put-and-take operation, with the expectation that FWP would be spending about $20 per pheasant released.

This program was incredibly controversial, but was it effective? Let’s take a closer look.

In essence, after Costco canceled a dairy milking contract leaving prisoners at the state prison in Deer Lodge with little to do, FWP used hunter dollars to support a new work program for prisoners administered by the Department of Corrections. To date, FWP has spent $1.1 million to build and administer this pheasant hatchery at the prison.

Read more from the Montana Standard here...

About Thomas Baumeister

Capital Chapter Leader - Montana BHA; Board Member - Montana Outdoor Hall of Fame; Board President - Orion -The Hunter's Institute

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