Third quarter grant applications were presented and voted on at the August 22, 2023 AZSFWC Board meeting. Funding for the grants is available through sales of our special Conserving Wildlife license plate. More information about the license plate and how you can obtain one can be found HERE.
Five grants were approved and included the following:
$20,000 was awarded to the National Forest Foundation for the Yaeger Canyon Habitat Protection & Forest Restoration project. The purpose of the project is to increase habitat for pronghorn and other grassland species, improve watershed condition, maintain existing old growth structure and protect against catastrophic wildfire. Funding partners include US Forest Service. Other partners include Coconino National Forest and Ancestral Lands Conservation Corps to conduct the work.
$4,000 was awarded to AZ Raptor Center for their Education and Outreach program. Raptors in their care that cannot be released back into the wild are utilized in education programs around the state. A typical program covers topics such as how raptors fit into the ecosystem, what raptors eat, and where they live. Funding will support the development of additional educational materials, expanding venues, and building internet and social media presence and providing a means to provide educational opportunities virtually. Additional funding will be provided by private donations and AZ Raptor Center contributions.
$3,650 was awarded to AZ Desert Bighorn Sheep Society for their annual Hunter Information Clinic. Anyone can attend the clinic where they will learn about Habitat Projects, Aging, Judging and Scoring a ram in the field, How to Hunt Sheep, Gear and Equipment, Optics, Taxidermy and Photography and Hunter Ethics. Each attendee is also provided with an instructional manual and handouts from presenters and various land management agencies. The Society is providing additional funding.
$380 was awarded to Valley of the Sun Quail Forever to produce an educational display case with mounted Scaley Quail to show youth and anyone else that have never seen the birds what they look like. Exhibits will be on display at all of the organization’s youth camps and seminars. Additional funding will be provided by Valley of the Sun Quail Forever/Pheasants Forever.
$1,700 was awarded to Valley of the Sun Quail Forever for their Pollinator project. Seeds native to the climate of the greater Phoenix area plus the elevations around Mayer and Prescott areas will be purchased and distributed around the area. Additional funding will be provided by Valley of the Sun Quail Forever/Pheasants Forever.
$5,625 was awarded to AZ Deer Association for their for their mentored youth deer and cow elk camps. The purpose of the camps is to provide support in locating, harvesting, game care, as well as, educational seminars. Experienced and seasoned mentors will be available to go afield with tag holders if needed and an AZ Game & Fish wildlife manager will be on hand to answer questions. Emphasis will be on hunter education, safety, ethics, hunting and glassing skills and will include seminars on map reading, compass use, first aid & survival, food & nutrition, gun & field safety. Additional funding will be provided by the Association.
$10,577 was awarded to AZ Deer Association for the purchase of a water hauling trailer to be used in Region 4. With extended draught conditions, the need for water is great. This trailer will provide a much needed resource for hauling water for wildlife. Funding partners include the AZ Deer Association.
$2,000 was awarded to Tucson Audubon for the Montezuma Quail Food Plot project. The purpose of the project is to increase the engagement of hunters in targeted conservation efforts for Montezuma Quail leading to a long-term increase in population numbers. Additional funding partners include Tucson Audubon Sonoita Creek Watershed Restricted donations, Southern AZ Quail Forever.
$4,750 was awarded to AZ Chapter Trout Unlimited to fund their 2023-2024 Trout in the Classroom education program (TIC). TIC is a well-established environmental education program created and conducted throughout the US for trout and salmon and is in more than 4, 000 classrooms. Students in grades 4 – 12 are involved in hands on experiences to:
- raise trout from eggs to fry
- monitor tank water quality
- engage in stream habitat study
- learn to appreciate water resources
- begin to foster a conservation ethic
- grow to understand ecosystems
Funding will not only support continuation of the program in existing schools in Arizona, but will also provide expansion to new schools. Partners include Arizona Game and Fish Department the Trout Unlimited Council and Chapters of Arizona.
$2,850 was awarded to Backcountry Hunters & Anglers to support their Hunting for Sustainability program “Learn to Hunt Small Game Workshop”. Students will learn about the basics of hunting through educational seminars on hunting ethics, fair chase, history of conservation, animal biology and ID, rules and regulations, scouting, gear, field dressing, and cooking. Students will also be required to participate in one hour of firearm safety and selection and two hours of mentored shooting, learning how to properly and safely operate and hunt with a firearm as well as work safely with bird dogs. Students will also apply their new knowledge and skills in the field on small game hunts under the guidance of mentors. The workshop emphasizes community, advocacy, and hands-on learning. Additional funding will be provided by Backcountry Hunters & Anglers, Pheasants Forever/Southern AZ Quail Forever and AZ Game & Fish.
$10,300 was awarded to Valley of the Sun Quail Forever for their Beginners Shotgun Program. This year-round program is an instructional course with NRA certified instructors and Level 1 coaches to teach the clay target sports, gun safety and shotgun shooting. It consists of 9 weeks each for Skeet, Trap and Sporting Clays. Goals of the program are the recruitment of new shotgun shooters, their retention in clay target sports and upland bird hunting, and reactivation of those whom may have been shotgun shooters or hunters at an earlier time in their lives. Additional funding is provided by ASRPA Cactus Clays. Additional partners include National Shooting Sports Foundation & NRA Instructors.