By Wayne Kruse Special to The Herald
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service earlier this year released its 2011 National Survey on Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife Associated Recreation, showing a 9 percent increase in hunters and an 11 percent increase in anglers compared to the last survey in 2006.
A coalition of hunting and fishing groups and the outdoor industry briefed members of the Congressional Caucus in late September, making the point that the 37 million sportsmen and women over the age of 16 in America are important elements of our country’s outdoor heritage and are critically important to our nation’s economy, particularly the small local economies that support quality hunting and fishing opportunities.
The coalition pointed out that the 37 million is the same as the population of the state of California, and the $90 billion they spent in 2011 is the same as the global sales of Apple’s iPad and iPhone in the same year.
Representative Bob Latta (R-Ohio), Republican House Vice-Chair of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus said, “One of the statisticcs I learned today is that the $6 billion that hunters spent in 2011 on guns, ammunition and archery equipment is comparable to the sales of bicycles in the United States. This is particularly important because most of those gun and ammunition companies are based right here in this country, supporting American jobs and American workers.”