When Missourians Speak
better manage wildlife populations."
Although hunters and anglers have always been an important source of information for the Conservation Department, input from all Missourians is necessary to make sure that their fish, forest and wildlife conservation needs are being met.
In fact, citizen input is so important to the Conservation Department that three full-time social and economic specialists are employed to make sure your voice is heard. These employees not only determine Missourian's interests and the economic impact of wildlife-oriented activities in Missouri, they represent those interests and impacts in meetings, committees and task forces across the state.
"We're actually their (Missourians) advocates," says Thorne. "It's our job to be knowledgeable of the public's interests because individual managers may or may not be."
"They're our real bosses - the people of Missouri," adds Sheriff.
All Missourians' opinions and interests are important to ensure that the natural resources of our beautiful state are conserved for you and future generations. That's why it's important to cooperate the next time you're asked to participate in a Conservation Department survey.
"Answering a survey is like voting," says Thorne. "You're expressing your opinion for your particular recreational interests. If you don't tell us that, we won't be able to record it or know that it exists. And if we don't record your interests, then managers can't even begin to accommodate your needs."
Data from Surveys
- Enough Missourians participated in wildlife recreation in one year to fill Arrowhead Stadium 26 times.
- Watching nature shows on TV is the most popular nature-oriented activity in Missouri.
- Nearly one-half of all Missourians fish, hunt or watch wildlife.
- Black bass are the most sought after fish by Missouri anglers, white-tailed deer are the most sought after game by hunters and birds of prey are the most sought after wildlife by wildlife watchers.
- 82 percent of Missourians are satisfied with the way Missouri takes care of its forests, fish and wildlife.
- Lack of time is the biggest obstacle to most Missouri households' enjoyment of the outdoors.
- 88 percent of Missourians approve of hunting for food, while 96 percent approve of fishing.
- Three in four households in Missouri are fishing households with at least one angler living in the home.
- 85 percent of Missourians are interested in the outdoors.
- Half of all Missourians rank outdoor activities, such as hunting, canoeing and nature photography, as their most enjoyed recreational pursuits.
- Wildlife recreation generates as much Missouri sales tax as the Conservation Department receives in state funding.
- The money annually spent on Missouri hunting and fishing permits would purchase nearly one million tickets to one of Missouri's major theme parks.