Each year as I contemplate writing the Director’s message, two things consistently come to mind. First, I am genuinely excited about the possible outdoor adventure opportunities that may result from a successful tag draw. Second, I consider how best to share the challenges and opportunities surrounding the Nevada Department of Wildlife, our customers, and the broader conservation community.
I believe that anyone applying for a big game tag experiences a sense of excitement about the upcoming adventures that a successful draw could bring. Despite our shared excitement, we may have different motives to apply for a tag and to get in the field. Multiple surveys have shown our motives are diverse and may include time with friends and family in the field, a source of lean and healthy organic protein to nourish our families, just being in nature, and the challenge of pursuit among other reasons.
Regardless of our motivations, we all have one thing in common. We are all part of the biggest conservation machine in the world. Conservation of species and many of the habitats on which they depend is almost entirely funded by those who choose to pay for the opportunity to engage in regulated hunting, regardless of their motivation.
Although our motivations may differ, we need to let the commonality of our contributions to conservation define us. Primitive weapon enthusiast or long-range shooter, recurve or compound archer, meat hunter or a hunter that holds out for a wall hanger, irrespective of your preferences and regardless of your age, gender, or method of hunting, we all share the title of Conservationist. Conservation of species and habitats will benefit more from unified ambassadors than from divisive antagonists. If you buy a license and apply for a tag, you are a member of a bigger effort than you may realize. You are a member of Nevada’s conservation community and YOU FUND NEVADA’s CONSERVATION EFFORTS. We are all united in our contributions to conservation.
I wish each one of you luck in this year’s big game tag draw and want to thank each of you for your contributions to the conservation of Nevada’s wildlife and its habitat. Our success will continue as we allow our shared contributions to define us as conservationists and, despite potential differences, stand together as proud contributors and ambassadors for the conservation of species and habitats.
Director, Nevada Department of Wildlife