I have been talking a lot these days about the economic value of hunting and fishing.
Today I am discussing that topic at a media event sponsored by the Congressional Sportsmen Foundation, National Shooting Sports Foundation, American Sportfishing Association and National Marine Manufacturers Association, all great groups focused on improving access to wildlife-related sports.
I am a hunter and an angler, have been all my life. I learned the skills from my dad, and his enthusiasm for the outdoors fed the little spark in me until that spark grew into a passion for fish and wildlife that led me to where I am today.
I know firsthand the importance of sportsmen and –women, and I love sharing that story.
The National Survey of Fishing, Hunting, and Wildlife-Associated Recreation that we released a few weeks ago shows that the number of hunters and anglers in 2011 was up 10 percent over 2006.
This increase reverses decades of declines and is great news for the nation.