New Research in Conservation and Hunting Supported by Alberta Professional Outfitters Society

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Conservation Visions Inc. has entered into a new partnership with the Alberta Professional Outfitters Society in support of the Wild Harvest Initiative. If hunting and angling in North America were to cease tomorrow, what would be the consequences?

Wild Harvest, Father and son hunting

Understanding recreational harvest contributions to human diets is imperative to making wise land and resource use decisions.

“The global concern over quality food is a social movement of great relevance to our hunting traditions.” Shane Mahoney

The Alberta Professional Outfitters Society, the organization responsible for administering the outfitted-hunting industry in Alberta, has joined a growing coalition of support for the Wild Harvest Initiative, a scientific study to evaluate the economic, ecological and social benefits of recreational wild animal harvests in Canada and the United States.

The Wild Harvest Initiative was designed and is being conducted by Conservation Visions Inc., a Canadian enterprise led by Shane Mahoney, one of North America’s leading biologists and conservationists. It will provide the first comprehensive assessment of recreational wildlife harvest in Canada and the United States and will help focus a wider question facing wildlife management and conservation policy institutions in both countries – if hunting and angling were to stop tomorrow, what would be the consequences?

“The global concern over quality food is a social movement of great relevance to our hunting traditions,” said Mahoney. “The Wild Harvest Initiative is designed to align these ideas and reposition hunting as a first choice for sustainable and healthy living.”

Chad Lenz, President of the Alberta Professional Outfitters Society agrees. “Too often we hear hunting described as unnecessary or a thing of the past. Our organization represents more than 484 member outfitter-guides and 1,400 guides, and we know this is not the case,” said Lenz. “We know,” he continued, “that hunting in North America is positively linked to food security, and health and fitness, as well as to a healthy economy and the conservation of wildlife and wild places. We believe the Wild Harvest Initiative has the potential to change the conversation about the benefits of hunting and angling and the value of our wild lands and waters.”

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In 2015, Conservation Visions Inc. embarked on a landmark project, the Wild Harvest Initiative, designed to evaluate the economic and social benefits of recreational wild animal harvests in Canadian and American societies. Founded upon and driven by a diverse partnership of individuals, business interests, conservation NGOs and government agencies, the project’s mission is to provide a first-ever evaluation of the biomass and economic value of wild food harvested by recreational hunters and anglers in Canada and the United States and to assess the wider community of consumers who share in this harvest. Its outcomes will contribute to conversations about the relevance of such wild animal harvest in modern North American society, exploring its connections to the conservation of wild lands and waters, the environment, and our own food security. These insights will be conjoined with existing economic assessments of recreational hunting and angling and an evaluation of the costs and mechanisms that might be considered necessary to replace this wild food harvest to help focus a wider question facing conservation policy institutions in both Canada and the United States: If hunting and angling were to cease tomorrow, what would be the consequences? Project results will be disseminated through an aggressive communications campaign.

For more information about the Wild Harvest Initiative, Shane Mahoney, or Conservation Visions Inc., visit http://www.conservationvisions.com.

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Shane Mahoney
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