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spectr17
08-31-2007, 10:28 AM
Hunters Contribute Billions To Conservation Efforts

8/31/07

Social Circle, Georgia - Whenever Georgia hunters purchase hunting licenses, firearms, ammunition or archery equipment they are supporting wildlife conservation through the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Program. This is the largest and most successful conservation program in the world, according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division (WRD). Since 1939, hunters have contributed more than $109 million dollars through this program and together with hunting license fees they continue to provide the primary funding for wildlife conservation in Georgia. Nationally, more than $5.2 billion has been provided to state agencies for wildlife conservation through the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Program.

"The Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration program benefits all wildlife species, conserves and restores habitat and helps enhance wildlife conservation through research," says WRD Assistant Chief of Game Management John Bowers. "Through this program, America's hunters provide the most substantial source of funding for wildlife conservation and management in the United States."

The Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act, also known as the Pittman-Robertson Act, was passed in 1937. Through lobbying efforts in Congress, America's hunters created this act as a way to fund conservation and management of America's wildlife. Wildlife Restoration funds are accumulated from an excise tax of 12.4-percent on bows, arrows, parts and accessories; an excise tax of 10-percent on pistols and revolvers; and an 11-percent excise tax on other firearms, shells and cartridges. This excise tax is levied at the manufacturers level, collected by the Federal government, and distributed to state wildlife agencies to fund wildlife conservation and management programs.

The amount of money each state agency annually receives is determined by the number of hunting licenses the state sells and by the size of the state.

WRD uses Wildlife Restoration funds for many types of programs,
including:

restoring habitat and improving wildlife populations,

operating more than one million acres of wildlife management
areas that benefit a diversity of wildlife species and provide wildlife-related recreational opportunities,

providing information to landowners on how to manage their
property for various species,

conducting hunter education classes, and

building and maintaining public shooting ranges.

For more information on the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Program, visit the USFWS website at http://www.fws.gov/southeast/federalaid/ . For more information on wildlife management practices in Georgia, visit the WRD website at www.gohuntgeorgia.com (http://www.gohuntgeorgia.com/), contact the local WRD Game Management office or call (770) 918-6416.

Media Contact:
GDNR WRD Game Management (770) 918-6416.