Did you know that the United States alone has lost over more than half of its original wetlands-nature’s most productive ecosystem? Throughout our busy lifestyles and our everyday stresses we need to take that one moment and do good for the things we love best. Speaking for myself, nothing is more rewarding than being in the outdoors and experiencing the great things nature has to offer. However for us to continue to enjoy the outdoors and our privilege of hunting we must help conserve our surroundings as well as introduce others to the beauty we see.
I have a close friend who was born in Hong Kong and raised in the Twin Cities. Though we are complete opposites there is something that binds us together as friends. I have taught her many things about the outdoors as well as hunting. She thought hunting was a murderous and barbaric act until she met me. Though she thought I was quite odd for driving a big lifted Chevy and having my duck and goose calls proudly displayed hanging from my rear view window, (she now is proficient in animal calling, thanks to me.)
I drug her out of bed at 7:00am on a Saturday morning to do a four and half mile walk in about 30 degree weather for the First Annual Walk for Wildlife sponsored by Ducks Unlimited this past October. We walked throughout the Minnesota River Valley Preserve. She was so grumpy and half asleep that morning but by the end of the walk she was smiling from ear to ear. She had felt good because she is a huge animal lover and learned a lot that day about conservation and habitat management. It can be as easy as picking up a piece of garbage off the ground that isn’t yours, setting a bird feeder up outside your window, leaving a row of corn for the animals after you have harvested, putting a birdhouse up, or just volunteering your time to local organizations.
With the speediness of the developing residential and commercial properties everywhere our animals can’t survive without their natural surroundings. It is important to take care of our land and wildlife because those little precious moments we enjoy so much could vanish before our very eyes along with the hunting and natural habitats. This year President George W. Bush issued a presidential proclamation that September 25th as National Hunting and Fishing Day. He wanted to pay tribute to the "contributions of America’s hunters and anglers, and all those who work to conserve our Nation’s resources." Also Congress has reaffirmed their commitment to the Wetlands Reserve Program and the Conservation Reserve Program. You can view the proclamation at http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2004/09/20040924-22.html... I am encouraging every woman to get involved in your local area to help conserve the land and wildlife you love to enjoy. Let us all together help keep our privileges alive.