EDGEFIELD, S.C. The National Wild Turkey Federation's (NWTF) Hunting Heritage Super Fund distributed more than $159,000 across North America in December of 2008 as it continues its mission of wild turkey conservation and protecting our hunting traditions.
The Hunting Heritage Super Fund supports the NWTF's multitude of conservation and education programs, with money raised from NWTF Hunting Heritage banquets, donated by corporate sponsors and given to benefit wildlife conservation.
The NWTF is a national nonprofit conservation organization that was founded in 1973 and has worked with wildlife agencies to restore wild turkey populations from 1.3 million wild turkeys in 1973 to nearly 7 million today. Now, NWTF volunteers raise funds and work daily to improve critical wildlife habitat, increase access to public hunting land and introduce new people to the outdoors and hunting.
To date, the NWTF and its partners have spent more than $279 million upholding hunting traditions and conserving nearly 14 million acres of wildlife habitat. Some of the Federation's Hunting Heritage Super Fund projects include improving wildlife habitat, supporting hunter education and providing opportunities for women, youth and people with disabilities to experience outdoor fun through outreach programs.
December's Hunting Heritage Super Fund spending totaled $159,134 and included:
*Habitat Enhancement: Spent $76,858 to improve wildlife habitat by creating more wild turkey nesting areas, planting trees and completing water development projects in nine states.
*Volunteer/Professional Education: Spent $16,111 to train volunteers and staff to better serve the NWTF's mission of wild turkey conservation and protecting our hunting traditions.
*Youth Education: Spent $9,452 to fund scholarships and educational projects, provide education boxes and conduct 4-H workshops.
*JAKES: Spent $7,910 to introduce youth to outdoor activities, conservation and hunting.
*Land Purchases: Spent $7,500 to purchase land or conservation easements to conserve wildlife habitat and provide additional hunting areas.
*Research: Spent $5,000 to purchase equipment and other materials necessary for conducting wild turkey research.
*Wheelin' Sportsmen NWTF: Spent $3,457 to provide opportunities for people with disabilities to participate in outdoor activities and learn about wildlife conservation through outreach events across North America.
*Other: Spent $32,843 to complete wild turkey management plans, support hunter safety classes and initiatives, purchase equipment for future habitat projects, provide educational opportunities and staff equipment, fund organizational dues, etc.
In addition to help funding projects like these, NWTF Hunting Heritage Super Fund banquets combine fun, fellowship and dedication to the wild turkey. They're a great place to meet friends who share your passion for the outdoors, win valuable prizes and buy items unique to the NWTF. Place the highest bid and you could go home with sporting art, hunting guns, knives, calls, outdoor equipment and more.
To find a NWTF Hunting Heritage Super Fund Banquet in your area, visit http://www.nwtf.org/h_h_banquet.html.
For more information about the NWTF or specific information on these projects, contact Brian Purtymun at (803) 637-7667 or visit www.nwtf.org.
About the NWTF: In 1973, Tom Rodgers founded the National Wild Turkey Federation in Fredericksburg, Va., as a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit conservation and education organization with a mission dedicated to conserving wild turkeys and preserving hunting traditions. Shortly thereafter, Rodgers relocated the NWTF to Edgefield, S.C., where it's still headquartered today.
At the time NWTF was established, there were only 1.3 million wild turkeys. Today that number stands at more than seven million birds throughout North America, thanks to the efforts of state, federal and provincial wildlife agencies, the NWTF and its members and partners.
Growth and progress define the NWTF as it has expanded from 1,300 members in 1973 to nearly a half million today. With that growth has come impressive strides in wildlife management as the NWTF has forged dynamic partnerships across the country to further its conservation mission. Together, the NWTF's partners, sponsors and grassroots members have raised and spent more than $279 million upholding hunting traditions and conserving nearly 14 million acres of wildlife habitat.
While wild turkey restoration is nearing completion, the NWTF still has much work to do. Across North America, supporters are working to enhance habitat for wild turkeys and other wildlife while providing hunters with more opportunities and access to public and private land. In addition, NWTF volunteers and partners are introducing youth, women and people with disabilities to the outdoors through special educational events.
If you would like to become a member of Team NWTF, join a committee or start a chapter, please visit our Web site at www.nwtf.org or call us at 800-THE-NWTF.