Outdoor News Bulletin

Outdoor News Bulletin

October 2019 Edition | Volume 73, Issue 10 | Published since 1946

Special Sessions for 85th North American Conference Announced

The program steering committee for the 85th North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference has announced the event’s four special sessions. The conference will be held March 8-13, 2020, at the Hilton Omaha in Omaha, Nebraska. The four special sessions will be held concurrently on Wednesday, March 11 and will directly follow the conference’s opening session that morning. Anyone interested in participating as a presenter at one of the special sessions is welcome to contact the appropriate chair or co-chairs.

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Evolving Business Models and an Antiquated Excise Tax Collection Model - Part 2

Today’s business model for manufacturing and distributing fishing and archery equipment is much more complex than the traditional business models that were in place when the excise taxes on hunting and angling equipment were first imposed (1930s for hunting, 1950s for angling). Because of changes to the business model, there are increasing “leakages” in the American System of Conservation Funding that are undermining the revenue potential for conservation. The first story of this two-part series looked at where these changes in the outdoor industry are occurring and how it is impacting excise tax collections. This second part will focus on the specific point of leakage and potential solutions.

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State Agencies Adopt the Fish and Wildlife Relevancy Roadmap

On September 25th at the annual meeting of the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA) in St. Paul, Minnesota, the states’ directors passed several resolutions including one to adopt and support implementation of the Fish and Wildlife Relevancy Roadmap. The Roadmap is a non-prescriptive guide designed to help states overcome barriers to engaging and serving broader constituencies. The Roadmap was built over the past 18 months by five strategy teams made up of state, federal, and provincial agency staff along with representatives of conservation non-governmental organizations and outdoor and natural resource industries. Wildlife Management Institute (WMI) President, Dr. Steve Williams, and Nevada Department of Wildlife Director, Tony Wasley, oversaw development. In addition to adopting the Roadmap, the state directors approved a Multi-state Conservation Grant of nearly $150,000 to WMI to support implementation of the Roadmap beginning in January, 2020. WMI staff is reaching out to states to identify agencies ready to enhance conservation through broader engagement.

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Mosquito-Borne EEEV Disease Outbreak Hits Parts of U.S. in Record Numbers

Parts of the U.S. are seeing higher than normal cases of infection and death from mosquito-borne eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV), a disease that kills one-third of human patients and leave many survivors with mild to severe brain damage. Human cases have been reported in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, North Carolina, Rhode Island and Tennessee as of October 15 of this year.

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Cooperative Research Unit Corner

Do Exotic Conifer Plantations Contribute to Avian Biodiversity?

Exotic plant species are a major concern for the conservation of native wildlife and ecosystems throughout the world. The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (MDCR) recently began work to eradicate non-native conifer plantations that remain on the lands and watersheds that they manage. Prior to beginning the work, the U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Geological Survey's Massachusetts Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit embarked on a research project to evaluate the biodiversity of the Norway spruce plantations using birds as an indicator species.

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