BLM Issues Instruction Memo re Bush Exec Order, Facilitation of Hunting Heritage and Wildlife Conservation

CWF learned of this BLM instruction memorandum on Saturday.  We will watch closely to see how BLM implements the instructions issued by its Director.


Washington, D.C. 20240
October 10, 2007
In Reply Refer To:
6500 (250) P
Instruction Memorandum No. 2008-006
Expires 09/30/2009
To:                   State Directors and Center Directors
From:               Director
Subject:            Implementation of Executive Order 13443, Facilitation of Hunting Heritage and Wildlife Conservation               DD: 11/12/ 2007
Program Areas Recreation and Visitor Services, Fish, Wildlife & Plant Conservation, Planning and Science Policy.
Purpose: On August 17, 2007 President Bush signed Executive Order # 13443: Facilitation of Hunting Heritage and Wildlife Conservation. The Order directs the Department ofthe Interior and its component agencies, bureaus and offices œto facilitate the expansion and enhancement of hunting opportunities and the management of game species and their habitat
Policy/Action:   This memorandum launches implementation by setting forth a number of initial actions that will ensure that the BLM plays its role in achieving the President’s vision for implementation of the Order.Specifically, the Order directs agencies to:
§         Evaluate trends in hunting participation and implement actions that expand and enhance hunting opportunities for the public;
§         Establish short and long term goals to conserve wildlife and manage wildlife habitats to ensure healthy and productive populations of game animals in a manner that respects state management authority over wildlife resources and private property rights;
§         Seek the advice of state fish and wildlife agencies, and, as appropriate, consult with the Sporting Conservation Council (SCC)[1] in respect to Federal activities to recognize and promote the economic and recreational values of hunting and wildlife conservation.
§         The Order also directs the Chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality, in coordination with federal agencies and in consultation with the SCC, state fish and wildlife agencies and the public, to convene, within one year after this Executive Order is signed, and periodically thereafter, a White House Conference on North American Wildlife Policy to facilitate the exchange of information and advice needed to fulfill the purposes of the Order.
§          In addition, the Order calls for a comprehensive 10-year Recreational Hunting and Wildlife Conservation Plan that will set forth an agenda for implementing the actions called for in the Order.
Actions Required
To carry out the Order, the BLM must collaborate with a diverse cross-section of state, local and tribal governments, scientists, landowners, individual sportsmen, non-profit organizations and other interested parties (Non-Federal Partners). To facilitate collaboration, it is important that we identify the near-term and long-term actions currently ongoing or under consideration throughout the agency. This will result in a coordinated approach to implementation, while also giving due consideration to the missions, policies and authorities unique to each agency.
I am also committed to ensuring that implementation of the Order reflects the unique and innovative ideas of you and your staff. Your ideas for new projects and initiatives will help build the agenda for the North American Wildlife Conference, the results of which will inform development of the 10-year plan called for by the Order.
Timeframe: This Instruction Memorandum (IM) is effective upon receipt. By November 12, 2007 State Directors should report back to the Chief, Division of Recreation and Visitor Services, WO-250, the information you gather by completing the following actions:
1.      Initiate communication with your staff and interested Non-Federal Partners and report on the following:
§         Ideas for near-term and long-term projects and initiatives (site-specific as well as national) that are consistent with agency mission and chosen in consultation with appropriate state, local and tribal governments and other non-federal partners.
§         Existing policies and procedures that should be considered for revisions or improvements as a result of the Order.
§         Proposed agenda items for the North American Wildlife Policy Conference.
§         Where feasible, the name and title of staff members available to serve on conference planning teams pursuant to Section 3 of the Order.
Budget Impact: There is no significant budget impact.
Background: The modern wildlife conservation movement was largely begun by the hunting community and hunters continue to make significant financial and personal commitments to the conservation of our nation’s wildlife resources. In addition, hunting and other forms of outdoor recreation provide tremendous physical and psychological benefits for all who participate.
Census data, however, indicates that hunting participation has decreased in the past 25 years and is projected to continue to decline over the next four decades. Executive Order # 13443 addresses the declining trends in hunter participation and seeks to ensure that hunting and hunters continue to play a central role in wildlife and habitat conservation into the future.
Manual/Handbook Sections Affected: Several Manuals and Handbooks will need to be updated to include this E.O. as an authority reference.
Coordination: This guidance was coordinated within the Divisions of Recreation and Visitor Services, Division of Fish, Wildlife & Plant Conservation and the Division of Planning and Science Policy
Contact: If you have any questions regarding this policy, please contact Mark Goldbach, Senior Outdoor Recreation Specialist, Recreation and Visitor Services Division (WO 250) at 202-452-5176 or Dwight Fielder, Chief, Fish, Wildlife & Plant Conservation Division (WO-230) at 202-452-7761 or Deb Rawhouser, Chief, Planning and Science Policy (WO-210) at 202-452-0354.
Signed by:
Authenticated by:
James L. Caswell
Robert M. Williams
Division of IRM Governance,WO-560
1 Attachment


[1] In March of 2006 the Department of the Interior announced the creation of the Sporting Conservation Council (SCC). The stated purpose for creating the Council was the need to institutionalize the role of sportsmen and women in informing the decision-making process of the Department. Last year, the Council’s charter was amended to include the Department of Agriculture. The Council has put forth two sets of recommendations since its inception.