The National Deer Association is teaming up with Mark Kenyon of Wired to Hunt and MeatEater to host three Working for Wildlife Tour volunteer workdays on public hunting land. NDA will host workdays in Idaho on July 29, Mississippi on September 23 and Kentucky on October 14.
“The Working for Wildlife Tour helps elevate the need and opportunity for folks to come out and chip in on public lands,” said Matt Ross, NDA’s Director of Conservation. “The NDA is proud to be involved, and we look forward to getting our hands dirty right alongside a bunch of volunteers improving habitat for deer and other wildlife in three locations this year.”
The Working for Wildlife Tour brings attention to the critical work hunters and anglers are doing to create, conserve, and restore wildlife habitat through volunteer on-the-ground events/workdays. These events provide an opportunity for the public to volunteer on public land, and workday tasks include everything from creating brush piles, wildlife openings and early successional habitat, to cleaning up debris, improving deer forage, collecting acorns for native reforestation, and invasive species removal. In addition to MeatEater and Mark Kenyon, the National Deer Association is teaming up with the U.S. Forest Service (USFS), three different state wildlife agencies, and numerous conservation partners to help host the Working for Wildlife Tour.
“Unbeknownst to many, there are hundreds of events put on across the country every year by conservation organizations bringing together hunters and anglers to volunteer their time to improve wildlife habitat, restore ecosystems, and clean up public lands and waters,” said Mark Kenyon. “Too many of these events slip by under the radar without the attention or participation they deserve. We want to help change that.”
The three workdays hosted by NDA include:
Idaho – Saturday, July 29; Idaho Panhandle National Forest
Activity: Removing encroaching conifers in aspen stands
Event Partners: USFS; Idaho Fish & Game, First Lite
Mississippi – Saturday, September 23; DeSoto National Forest and Leaf River WMA
Activity: Wildlife tree establishment, food plot seeding and invasive plant removal
Event Partners: USFS; Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks; Mississippi Power
Kentucky – Saturday, October 14; Daniel Boone National Forest
Activity: White oak acorn collection for local reforestation project
Event Partners: USFS; Kentucky Division of Forestry; Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources; University of Kentucky; Independent Stave Company
Each event directly contributes to NDA’s national Public Lands Conservation initiative.
The first 50 people who register and attend will either receive a Working for Wildlife t-shirt or NDA trucker hat in First Lite camouflage. Anyone who signs up and participates in the three events listed above will automatically be enrolled in a Working for Wildlife – NDA-branded YETI Roadie® 24 drawing at the end of the Tour as a way to say “thank you” for giving back to our public lands and supporting the NDA’s Public Lands Conservation initiative!
“The NDA is dedicated to improving a million acres through the Public Lands Initiative because those lands belong to all of us and, frankly, our forests are constantly under attack by invasive plants, disease, insects, and wildfire, or too often overall lack of management,” said Ross. “It’s truly a losing battle for our public land managers in many places, the threats outnumber their capacity. We’re fortunate that our members and deer hunters in general have a culture of giving back.”