Many people see hunting and conservation as opposing interests but the North American Wildlife Conservation Model categorizes them as overlapping activities. Often, the two groups are misunderstood by one another despite sharing a common goal: To conserve the environment that we all benefit from and depend on. We all want to be stewards of nature and take responsibility for conservation. Common goals:
- We are all the same: stewards of nature
- We all want the same: good stewardship of land
- We all want to take responsibility for good conservation
- We are all united with the common goal of: conservation and stewardship of the land
Go Wild investigates how guided hunting experiences can enhance conservation of the land by examining ecological, social and economic values. We share nature connection reviews through wilderness experiences, food sources and the like. Go Wild promotes:
- Conservation through knowledge
- Conservation through education
- Conservation through experiences
The North American Model of Wildlife Conservation
The North American Model of Wildlife Conservation identifies wilderness and wildlife conservation as our responsibility and privilege. The stewardship efforts of Go Wild and its partners are based on the North American wildlife model which guides them by the following principles and beliefs :
- Scientific findings need to inform laws and policies to promote wildlife populations’ long-term viability and optimal health.
- Human society is responsible for purposefully and proactively managing wildlife populations while recognizing the interdependence of humans, wildlife, and the habitats we live in.
- This responsibility reaches beyond international borders and supersedes commercial marketplaces’ and privileged groups’ interests.
Value of Nature
Nature can be millions of abiotic and biotic factors, animals, plants, fungi, microbes and much more that are interdependent and dependent on each other and create complex ecosystems together. Nature can be a wild place that has not been affected by human impacts. Humans are part of nature. Nature in itself is valuable, but if we do not value it and take away our attention from it, it loses its importance. Therefore an important aspect of conservation is drawing attention to nature.
To protect nature we need to draw our attention to it. Experiencing and understanding nature creates awareness which leads to tangible conservation action. This process is simply explained by human nature, as we seek to take care of what is important to us. Further we have to understand and experience wilderness, to be able to protect it in a responsible management practice.
Stewards of the Land
Guide outfitters act as stewards of the land. They take ownership and responsibility for a tangible resource management to fulfil everyone’s interest in healthy ecosystems and thrive to achieve maximum wildlife population numbers for the habitat‘s potential carrying capacity, this being the indicator for sustainable land management.
The stewards facilitate different levels of wilderness experiences which also provide knowledge about nature. In this process the clients reconnect to and experience the wonder of nature. Often clients describe a process that we can summarize with the word “metanoia” – the journey of changing one’s mind, heart, self or way of life (…). As well as a high awareness about themselves, attention is drawn to nature and awakens a connection to the land that can be described with the word “topophilia”- a sense of place and love of home gained from experience (…). The clients benefit in multiple ways from the natural experience: Physically, personal development, spiritual fulfilment/abundance, they learn about and preserve a way of life and support the preservation of the ecosystem, species and wilderness.
Our partner the Stewardship Foundation is promoting sustainable natural resource use through presentation of the Evergreen Stewardship Plans. The Stewardship Plans represent guidelines for responsible and sustainable land and resource management. All management directions constructed in the Evergreen Stewardship Plans are made based on government data. In the best interest of the environment, the tool we use for measuring the success of efforts is to achieve maximum wildlife population numbers for the habitat‘s potential carrying capacity, this being the indicator for sustainable land management.
How exactly are hunters contributing to conservation?
Hunters become passionate and want to stay directly involved and become conservation volunteers.
Hunters contribute in bringing economic value. We might want to see “conservation” as something that does not require money, but just the absence of the human in nature and a protected area by government law, is an idealistic version of conservation.
Guide outfitters are commonly directly reinvesting in conservation in the form of wildlife studies, projects like habitat enhancement or invasive species control in their territory and adjacent areas. Further they contribute to appropriate land management by forwarding observations and study results to governmental authorities.
Thanks to the North American Wildlife Conservation Model the money raised by hunting through sale of tags, royalties and alike go directly into the Fish and Wildlife Department and contribute to:
- Wildlife research
- Buying land to create protected areas and refugee systems
- Wildlife management programs
- Hunter education programs