Determining the Future of Hunting in Vermont
An effort was sorely needed to reverse the downward trend of hunting participation in Vermont. The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department alone will never be able to act alone and reverse this decline. As a result, the Department reached out and empowered the brightest, the most influential hunters in Vermont to create a vision with specific strategies to improve hunting participation
The Symposium/Conference directly engaged selected leaders from many programs, organizations, and agencies that have an interest in hunting and its future in Vermont. This Conference set the stage to developing collaboration and enabling resources and efforts to maintain Vermont’s rich hunting heritage.
The objectives of this conference were to:
1)Highlight the significance of, and causes behind, declining hunter retention and recruitment.
2)Review the public’s understanding, acceptance, and approval of hunting.
3)Energize key stakeholders to work together to address the problem.
This workshop helped ensure future efforts, funding and program initiatives are delivered in a comprehensive and coordinated fashion with a common message and desired outcome.
1)To restate the importance of the North American Wildlife Management Model to Vermonters and our wildlife.
2)To empower attendees through ownership of the problem (i.e. decline in the number of hunters).
3)To increase partnerships between statewide sportsman’s clubs, 4H Shooting Sports Clubs, Scouting Groups, US Fish and Wildlife Service Refuges, Vermont Outdoor Guides Association and other conservation, youth and sporting organizations.
4)To motivate the leaders of these groups to promote positive, publicly-appealing messages and actions within their groups with the public.
We did not want:
1)Results or recommendations that are inconsistent with the department’s current policies or budget.
2)Results or recommendations that place the burden of action on the department.
3)Results or recommendations that are counter to the public’s understanding, acceptance and approval.