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This video, posted at, singularly fails to mention the role that hunting has played, is playing and will play in the return of Big Horn Sheep to The Lone Star State. (Not to mention the role hunters played in their disappearance.) Maybe that’s because those conservation efforts might lose sympathy if the general public knew that the people paying for the animals’ reintroduction are looking forward to shooting them. People like the Texas Big Horn Society, who call it like they see it (after the jump). But what about you? Do you think environmentalists owe hunters a debt of gratitude? Hunters have generated billions through the The Pittman-Robertson Act. Win win? Or sin win?

The Texas Bighorn Society believes that hunter/conservationists are key to the conservation, management, and preservation of wildlife throughout the world.  We believe that regulated hunting is beneficial, and a viable recreational use of renewable wildlife resources.  We support harvesting as a necessary management tool in this regard and strongly advocate the right of state agencies such as the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, to determine wildlife management policies.  We believe that education is the key to preserving America’s hunting heritage.  We also feel that every hunter has a moral obligation to behave ethically and responsibly.  The Texas Bighorn Society believes that the continued success of the desert bighorn sheep restoration program in Texas is closely related to hunting.  Without the support of hunters, it would be virtually impossible to continue to provide the monetary, physical, and political support needed to keep the sheep restoration project alive and healthy.

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  1. Consider this, there are millions upon millions of cattle in the United States, despite the fact that every day, thousands (or tens or hundreds of thousands) are taken to the slaughterhouse. Cattle are not in any danger of extinction.
    This is because cattle are managed as a resource by people who have an interest in eating them. It’s the same with wild game. I like venison, and I’m interested in there being venison available for me to hunt and eat for as long as I am able to do so. More than that, I’m willing to pay money to help ensure that this is the situation. Consider the fact that one of the conservation movement’s most prominent early supporters was the prolific hunter Theodore Roosevelt. Hunters are the ones who benefit most from conservation efforts, it should be no surprise that they are some of the biggest conservationists.

  2. I’d like to see the amount a hunter spends in membership and volunteer work for organizations like DU, Pheasants Forever, TRCP, etc., versus a PETA member’s when it comes to what and where it ends up for wildlife and habitat. The amount that sportsman put back isn’t just used for hunting and fishing either.

    • Good call, Jake. PETA kills a lot of animals and throws them away like trash. Hunters don’t do that. When it comes to ethics, I choose hunters over PETA every time.

  3. Ditto everything said above.

    Plus, you’ll usually find programs like “Acres for Wildlife” involve folks who set aside land for wildlife in order to improve hunting.

    At the above site, note the special program aimed at increasing bobwhite quail numbers. The only reason anyone is interested in increasing bobwhite quail numbers is to increase chances to hunt them.

    Bobwhites have decreased in Arkansas because 19th and early 20th century agricultural practices have largely disappeared. There are just simply fewer pastures with brushy, weedy edges that make such good habitat for quail. Quail just don’t do well in forests.

    You can find some PETA members willing to write snarky comments on websites, or a few willing to yell insults at folks who eat “sea kittens,” but not many willing to set aside part of the property they own specifically for wildlife habitat.

    But plenty of hunters are very interested in doing just that.

  4. In an overcrowded world, widelife must pay its way or become extinct. Its true in Africa and its true in the USA.

  5. The Arizona Big Horn Sheep Society has worked tirelessly to preserve this endangered species. Follow this link to a recent Arizona Republic story about their assistance with Arizona DOT and Game and Fish to study and build overpasses on the widened highway leading to the new Hoover Dam bypass bridge.
    Hunters and farmers work and spend their own money and time help with wildlife conservation. In Arizona the number of Desert Big Horn Sheep hunting tags is extremely limited and in some years none are issued. The Society still works hard to preserve the sheep. Hunting one is not for the faint of heart. Their territory is THE most harsh in Arizona. For the Americans as a whole, the efforts of hunters working on wildlife conservation is a win-win. And for the record, I am not a hunter. I am fortunate to have benefited from the Society’s efforts as I have seen, once, a Desert Big Horn Sheep in the wild.

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