Now that the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge has ended, volunteers are lining up to show their support for public lands. Oregon chapter members met in Bend in February to discuss possible projects. Among the ideas floated were boots-on-the-ground habitat related projects, rehabilitation of the occupation site and a fundraiser for the refuge. Oregon BHA will continue to be engaged as information becomes available.
Public lands transfers continue to be a pressing issue for Oregon. Volunteers like Joe Metzler of Coos Bay are making the sportsman’s voice heard in the sale of the Elliott State Forest. This coastal gem represents what can happen when states assume control of federal public lands.
The OR chapter is spearheading a coalition to promote the interests of sportsmen and -women in the lower Owyhee Canyonlands. This remote area in southwest Oregon offers excellent backcountry fishing opportunities for high desert trout and hunting for big game and chukar. By working with state and local sportsmen organizations and businesses, we will be better positioned to influence policies that affect this unique and valuable landscape.