Letter: Act helps wildlife populations, preserves habitat
Seventy-five years ago, decades of drought and poor wildlife management had left populations of game animals like bighorn sheep at dangerously low levels in North Dakota.
In response to pressure from hunters, Congress took action in 1937, passing the Pittman-Robertson Act, an excise on the sale of hunting equipment — including guns, ammunition, archery supplies and other gear.
In 2012, more than $3.5 million was returned to North Dakota to fund wildlife management, hunter training courses and the conservation of wildlife habitats. The size of the apportionment is based on the state’s land area and the number of licensed hunters, and spending plans are proposed by the North Dakota Game and Fish Department to the secretary of the interior for approval.
Over the years, programs undertaken because of this act have increased wildlife populations and preserved thousands of acres of habitat. And thanks to that, hunting today is better than ever.
In 1975, North Dakota had its first modern-day bighorn sheep season, which continues today. Thanks to the support of hunters, North Dakota’s Game and Fish Department has the resources to conserve wildlife habitats for years to come.
Thank you hunters!
Terri Thiel, Dickinson Convention & Visitors Bureau executive director and Hunting Work$ for North Dakota member