September 18, 2017

The Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies Applauds Zinke's Order to Support Sportsmen & Enhance Wildlife Conservation

The Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies applauds last week’s announcement of Secretarial Order 3356 by secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke. This order’s purpose is to “enhance conservation stewardship, increase outdoor recreation for all Americans, including opportunities to hunt and fish, and improve the management of game species and their habitat for this generation and beyond.”


“Secretary Zinke’s order demonstrates his commitment to our nation’s outdoor heritage and working cooperatively with state fish and wildlife agencies and the conservation community,” said Virgil Moore, President of the Association of the Fish and Wildlife Agencies and Director of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game. “This order reaffirms the tremendous value of quality wildlife habitat and outdoor recreational opportunities, including hunting and fishing, in connecting millions of Americans to the outdoors. In particular, the state fish and wildlife agencies look forward to working closely with Secretary Zinke and agency leadership within the Department of the Interior to enhance habitat management and stewardship on federal lands to help meet state-set sustainable fish and wildlife population goals.”


“The Association commends Secretary Zinke taking positive steps toward sustaining and expanding public access opportunities to the outdoors,” said Executive Director Ron Regan. “This order shows his continued commitment to our outdoor recreation heritage and economy. The Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies looks forward to helping the Secretary and our state agency members successfully implement Secretarial Order 3356.”


“Hunting and fishing is a cornerstone of the American tradition and hunters and fishers of America are the backbone of land and wildlife conservation,” said Secretary Zinke. “The more people we can get outdoors, the better things will be for our public lands. As someone who grew up hunting and fishing on our public lands - packing bologna sandwiches and heading out at 4AM with my dad - I know how important it is to expand access to public lands for future generations. Some of my best memories are hunting deer or reeling in rainbow trout back home in Montana, and I think every American should be able to have that experience.”


Secretarial Order 3356 is an extension of Secretarial Order 3347, issued on Zinke's first day, March 2, 2017. That order identified a slate of actions for the restoration of the American sportsmen conservation ethic, which was established by President Theodore Roosevelt.


The Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies represents North America’s fish and wildlife agencies to advance sound, science-based management and conservation of fish and wildlife and their habitats in the public interest. The Association represents its state agency members on Capitol Hill and before the Administration to advance favorable fish and wildlife conservation policy and funding and works to ensure that all entities work collaboratively on the most important issues. The Association also provides member agencies with coordination services on cross-cutting as well as species-based programs that range from birds, fish habitat and energy development to climate change, wildlife action plans, conservation education, leadership training and international relations. Working together, the Association’s member agencies are ensuring that North American fish and wildlife management has a clear and collective voice.


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