Messages from Mark

Messages from Mark

Mark DeYoung, Hunter Nation CEO


A Call for Unity

A Call for Unity

May 2019

My fellow hunters and proud members of Hunter Nation; the challenges facing hunters are increasing again this year with state level anti-hunting legislation popping up from coast to coast. Now more than ever hunters must unite with a loud and common voice to resist and defeat attacks on legal hunting and defend our longstanding and successful wildlife conservation practices.

This month Hunter Nation helped create a coalition of over 400 hunting oriented organizations who support the Trump Administration’s plan to delist the Grey Wolf. The administration’s  plan calls for removing the Grey Wolf from Endangered Species protections and returning management of this predator to State level wildlife management professionals in the lower 48 states. These State level wildlife managers have the skills and capability to properly balance predators and prey to ensure abundant herds and flocks of wildlife. For decades proper wolf management has been stalled through legal action by organizations who do not value the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation – the most successful conservation model in the world.

Under this sportsman focused and funded model of conservation our country has experienced an undeniable expansion of wildlife and improvements in overall wildlife habitat and health.

  • In 1907, there were only 41,000 Elk in North America, today there are more than 1 million.
  • In 1900, only 500,000 Whitetail deer remained, but today there are more than 32 million.
  • In 1900, there were only 100,000 wild turkeys, but today there are over 7 million.
  • In 1950, there were only 12,000 Pronghorn Antelope, but today we have over 1 million of these magnificent animals roaming our western prairies.

These successes in wildlife management were not funded by environmentalists, cyclists, bird watchers, hikers or campers. They were almost entirely funded by hunters. In 1937 hunters voluntarily requested an 11 percent excise tax on guns, ammunition, and other hunting equipment to help fund wildlife conservation. This tax has generated over $8 billion for wildlife conservation.

In addition, hunting licenses and fees generate roughly $800 million a year for wildlife conservation. Through donations to various conservation organizations, hunters have added another $440 million a year to wildlife conservation efforts.  All together, hunters generate more than $1.6 billion a year for America’s wildlife conservation programs.

Hunter Nation supports our Nation’s traditional hunting values, our proven wildlife conservation programs and the lessons learned through the hunting experience. This includes lessons in self reliance, sportsmanship, discipline, ethical pursuit of game, and an appreciation for nature and the great outdoors.

As the renowned conservationist John James Audubon stated: “A true conservationist is a man who knows the world is not given by his father’s, but borrowed from his children.”

Thanks to all of our Hunter Nation members for your commitment and dedication to God, country, family, hunting and conservation. Congratulations to all of the winners of our first annual Hunter Nation Hunt Sweepstakes. Hunters from across the country won amazing hunts through this sweepstakes and top hunting industry personalities will be joining them on these dream hunts. What a great opportunity!

Thanks for all you do for conservation and hunting. Together we can protect and preserve our hunting way of life.


Mark W. DeYoung

Hunters are America’s Conservationists.