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National Hunting and Fishing Day

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Date When Celebrated : Third Saturday of September

National Hunting and Fishing Day (NHFD) was first created to recognize and thank hunters and fishermen for their support towards wildlife and aquatic conservation. Hunters and fishermen were the first to recognize the need to conserve and manage wildlife and fishing populations, and maintain a healthy environment for them.

When we think of fish and wildlife management, licenses and limits often come to mind. Education is also an important part of celebrating this special day. Preserving wildlife areas and the health of lakes and streams, is also essential to healthy and sustainable populations. Shrinking wildlife areas, poisoning the environment with chemicals, and polluting our waters, are an ever constant threat.

Today, state and local governments along with public and private organizations and groups use this day by holding programs to promote conservation, and fish and wildlife management. They also use it as a day to encourage people to partake in hunting and fishing, and especially encourage youth to participate in these sports.

We encourage you to participate in events in your area. We also encourage you to take your young son, daughter, niece or nephew out fishing, or to a shooting range. As you do, make sure to teach and encourage them to get involved with conservation and management efforts, too.

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History and Origin of National Hunting and Fishing Day:

Hunters and fishermen were early supporters of conservation and wildlife management. It goes back to over one hundred years, and was led by President Theodore Roosevelt, an avid sportsman. They urged sustainable fish and game management. During this time, the first hunting and fishing licenses were required.

Ira Joffe of Upper Darby, PA was the first to suggest and promote a day of thanks to sportsmen for their conservation efforts. In 1970, thanks in part to his efforts, 1970 Pennsylvania declared the first "Outdoor Sportsman Day".

Then, in June, 1971, U.S. Senator Thomas McIntyre of New Hampshire, introduced Joint Resolution 117 authorizing every 4th Saturday in September to be National Hunting and Fishing Day (NHFD) .

In May, 1972, President Richard Nixon issued a proclamation for NHFD. He said "I urge all citizens to join with outdoor sportsman in the wise use of our natural resources, and in insuring their proper management for the benefit of future generations."

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