Conservation organizations, hunters should work hand-in-hand
Hunters sometimes look down their noses at some conservation organizations, particularly those that don’t seem to be perfectly aligned with their interests.
National Rifle Association, Ducks Unlimited, Quality Deer Management Association – to name just a few – are organizations that more or less make their missions plain in their titles. It’s not always as evident with groups such as The Nature Conservancy, Little Traverse Conservancy, The Wilderness Society and others.
The Nature Conservancy, in particular, has a long history of being hunter-friendly. It holds more than 20,000 acres in Michigan, most of which is open to hunting.
This year, the group announced a two-year agreement with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to restore habitat and protect threatened species in the Petersburg State Game Area in Monroe County. It’s allowing the DNR to use some of the $869,000 that TNC received for habitat work from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. According to DNR Wildlife Division head Russ Mason, the state wouldn’t be able to do the work without the agreement with The Nature Conservancy. The habitat work will benefit game and non-game species.
The Little Traverse Conservancy and other small conservation groups support hunters, too. LTC has a great deal of land the Eastern Upper Peninsula and Northern Lower Peninsula that is open to hunting. In most cases, hunters need only secure permission from the organization through its website to gain access to its land holdings.
Organizations such as these and others deserve a second look and hunter support. You can read more about The Nature Conservancy and its work with hunters at its website, nature.org, including a great story in its archives on why wolves should be hunted, written by Matt Miller, the director of communication for TNC in Idaho.