California Hunting / Fishing License statistics....Intersesting !

Bigolwiggler

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So I got curious yesterday while thinking about what will happen to California hunting license sales when the lead ban takes full effect for hunting in 2019.

I looked up the stats for hunting and fishing license sales on the Fish and GAME website from 1970 to 2017.
While reading some of the things that I write below, keep in mind that the population of California in 1970 was almost 20 million people . In 2017 it was almost 40 million. It has just about doubled.

Here are some stats, ( I rounded the numbers a bit.)

Hunting licenses sold in 1970 691,000 in 2017 206,000 ( sales down by about 66% )

Fishing Licenses sold 1970 2,100,000 2017 1,113,000 (sales down by about 50% )


Hunting license revenues to the state 1970 $2,763,000 2017 $9,937,000 ( more than tripled revenue )

Fishing license revenues to the state 1970 $6,281,000 2017 $43,954,000 ( almost 7 times the revenue )


Now granted , inflation would account for a chunk of revenue increases but 7 times more ?

A couple other interesting facts .

Bear tag 1970 $1.00
Bear tag 2017 $42.25 WOW !

Hunting License 1970 $4.00
Hunting License 2017 $43.50


So my main question for you is , why the huge drop in license sales in California ??

I am sure that there is not one single reason but probably many . I think that one reason is that many are afraid to take up hunting in Ca. after reading the regulations ! Anymore it is so very easy to be in violation , it gets worse just about every year. People just think its not worth taking a chance. I think that the culture in California ( Public ) schools also discourages hunting and fishing . ( its evil to do so . ) Our kids are being taught not to hunt.
Just the cost of hunting and fishing discourages people.
Again , I think that when the no lead ammo law hits in 2019 we will see a large decrease in license sales. The politicians / activists in California (and in the DFW) will have won again . Inch by inch .

What do you think the reasons are ?

On a side note , I hunted in Idaho this past season. I read through their regulations and it was a breath of fresh air ! They actually seem to be on the side of the hunter and fisher people ! They want to help in anyway they can. The regulations were very common sense and practical . California could learn a lot , but I don't think that will happen.

Here is where I got the stats. www.wildlife.ca.gov/Licensing/Statistics.

BOW








 

socalcowboy

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Funny - I do the same thing and question it every time....I buy a hunting and fishing license and tags every year, but I feel that each time I am buying it I am supporting a group that is not supporting us.. Its becoming a rich mans activity. No to mention how difficult it is to fish and hunt in this state.

I was born and raised in burbs of Chicago - Only archery hunted back there, but fished all the time and caught tons of fish.... Here (San Diego) you could soak a worm for hours and not get a bite - back in Chicago worms dont last a second.

I have talked to many people who just have given up on hunting here - crowds, license fees, quota's.....

I hunted in the DWU fields in the valley - 1 year and will never do that again.. I was afraid of shooting someone or someone shooting me... it was a square field with hunters 10 yards apart around the whole field converging to the center... Scariest thing I ever saw.

I have calculated - a deer hunt in Idaho is really close to the cost of me hunting X9A (which I have only done 2x - 2009, 2012.) - Figure - cost of gas, camping, only getting drawn once every 3 to 4 years and now its going to be longer...

Everyone has a breaking point - how much more can we take? Every time the # license decrease they increase the cost of the license. I really wish i had the capability of getting 200,000 people and 1000000 to stop buying their fishing and hunting license for 1 year... cause that would be the only way to make an impact.. Otherwise - it will continue on...

Leave with one last thought - So if it gets to a point that hunting stops in California, what recourse could we have with lifetime hunting and fishing licenses?

Flustered...
 

outdoorplay

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our biggest problem is uneducated voters. people vote off what they are told on the news...

and there are only 206,000 hunters here in cal (well that hunt here) out of 40 million people that could be it


I have said this before and it never fails someone takes it as a personal attack on Non-Profits.
So if this is you keep it to your self, I'm not attacking you, I just don't agree with charging kids or first-year hunters

in my opinion, I see our non profits as being a problem.
our biggest problem is this, educating people on the outdoors is no longer free, everyone has their hands out. I remember a time when they had youth days and the first year hunting programs that were FREE, now it seems like everyone is charging for them, (for example) having a youth hunt and charging $150... for it.... when everything is donated, the location, food, drinks, and gifts. Everyone, that helps put them on, is volunteers so why charge so much? tell you this if you have a family of 3 kids there is no way most could afford it.

as a lot of you know I have worked in the business of hunting and fishing for a long time and to this date, the number one thing I hear is this.

I would love to learn how to hunt, I just don't have anyone to teach me... I don't know where to start.

here if most people that I talk to would like to learn how to hunt, why is there no first year hunting programs? why is the state doing more to stop hunting (and other outdoor activities)

lets not fight about this, just post up what you think could help build the hunting community
 

sierrahunter1

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Interesting post, BOW. One dollar in 1970 is worth $6.31 today.
Regarding bear tag prices, I don't think they are out of line from other States. It's actually one of the best things about hunting in California. Anyone can get an OTC bear tag, and hunt anywhere in the State (where bear hunting is allowed). The season is roughly 4 months long! No draw and no zone-specific tags. Awesome.
Regarding the decline in hunting, those are very sobering numbers. I reflected on that a bit, wondering why the forests and marshes seem so crowded if participation has dropped off so much. I think we've lost many of our wild places as development has increased. I do wonder when we're going to lose our hunting heritage altogether in this State.
 

Bigolwiggler

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One thing that would help a lot is for us hunters to teach others. I brought my wife into the hunting / fishing world about 4 years ago . She is now an addict . I created a monster .
In the back of my mind I have been thinking that I need to teach someone new to do the same just to do my part in keeping the heritage alive. I guess that I am just being selfish . I have my fish and game places semi dialed in and am stingy about giving them up after a lot of dirt and sweat.

I look at the cost per pound of meat quite a bit . Yes , I am willing to also pay some for the awesome experiences that hunting and fishing brings...that is definitely worth something . I am by no means rich . I like to hunt local . I live in the heart of B zone so travel expense and lodging is very low.

I hate to be pessimistic but when the SF Bay Area and L.A. area basically decides who gets elected and what laws are passed , it is hard not to be pessimistic about hunting's future here. ( I wish that the State of Jefferson idea would fly ) .

I think that we can also educate non hunters . I have done so and in some cases they now respect hunting and the hunter. This is also a way to help build the hunting community. It has to be done rationally and calmly with facts and good , sound logic in order to change their way of thinking . Teaching the ethics involved in hunting is also important. Tossing out insults and frothing at the mouth will only solidify their opposition to hunting .

Lets really to do our part though at times is seems dismal and VOTE.


BOW
 

Zach

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outdoorplay said:
our biggest problem is uneducated voters. people vote off what they are told on the news...

and there are only 206,000 hunters here in cal (well that hunt here) out of 40 million people that could be it


I have said this before and it never fails someone takes it as a personal attack on Non-Profits.
So if this is you keep it to your self, I'm not attacking you, I just don't agree with charging kids or first-year hunters

in my opinion, I see our non profits as being a problem.
our biggest problem is this, educating people on the outdoors is no longer free, everyone has their hands out. I remember a time when they had youth days and the first year hunting programs that were FREE, now it seems like everyone is charging for them, (for example) having a youth hunt and charging $150... for it.... when everything is donated, the location, food, drinks, and gifts. Everyone, that helps put them on, is volunteers so why charge so much? tell you this if you have a family of 3 kids there is no way most could afford it.

as a lot of you know I have worked in the business of hunting and fishing for a long time and to this date, the number one thing I hear is this.

I would love to learn how to hunt, I just don't have anyone to teach me... I don't know where to start.

here if most people that I talk to would like to learn how to hunt, why is there no first year hunting programs? why is the state doing more to stop hunting (and other outdoor activities)

lets not fight about this, just post up what you think could help build the hunting community
You need to ask Cal F&G where that $43M is going.
Start looking at the budget numbers when they are published.

Having said that, can you specify your example of a non-profit issue?
In this day and age, non-profit doesn't always mean free.


Also, BOW, how is the price of tags adjusted? Are they tied to CPI? Voted on by Legislature? Once you have that info you can go after the source to rein in prices, if they can be put back in the tube.
 

DKScott

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Biggest reason is lack of access to huntable lands and low game populations. People get frustrated and quit. I hear it all the time.

Also, lack of time, kids sports have become an all-year long obsession,and the tradition is not getting passed along like it used to; I think for the reasons above plus urbanization of society and the fracturing of families compared to 1970 and earlier.
 

GUNDOGLOVER

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I agree with what DK said, but I think just the politics of this state turns people off, I know it did it for me. The state just doesn't want hunter here, oh they want they money sportsmen and women generate just not the hunters, sorry Sacramento, you can't have it both ways. I only hunt out of state and have done so since 2006. I feel welcome in states like IN. Wis. AZ. and NM. NOT in Ca. WON for the past two weeks have published the ten top reasons for the decline of hunting, from Mother nature, technology, lack of awareness, and mostly gun control. All of which I agree with.
 

ilovesprig

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Mike,

I'm the chairman of two NWTF non-profit activities for youth hunters.....The Santa Ysabel Youth Mentored Turkey Hunt and The Jakes Day at the Range event.....Neither cost the kids anything.....I can also tell you that every year someone says lets charge a "Nominal" fee.....Well as long as I'm the chairman, they'll be no fee.....I'm also a participant of the San Diego Youth Pheasant hunt....No charge.

The problem I see is the lack of information and mentors trying to pass on our hunting heritage.....Those 3 events have just under 200 kids each year.....How many kids (youth aged hunters) are there in San Diego County alone?

CWA offers hunts at no charge and have for years promoted hunter opportunity.....SCI donates to our youth events here....Escondido Fish & Game Assoc. offers youth shooting only days and I'm sure many of the other shooting clubs have similar events.

The San Diego Fish & Wildlife Commissioners (of which I'm part of) just donated monies to two organizations (Friends of Rollo, O'Side Senior Anglers) that take kids fishing in the ocean.

Many of us old guys are trying, but the numbers don't lie.....We're a dying breed in California.

ps....I was told many many years ago that we'll always have hunting, but it will be only for the rich.....Just like Europe.
 

mouthcallinmatt

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I haven't researched this yet so I'm just throwing it out there to see if any of you already know. Are other states experiencing the same trends & how do they compare to California's numbers? My hunch is that it's similar but in a less accelerated way compared to California.
 

Zach

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mouthcallinmatt said:
I haven't researched this yet so I'm just throwing it out there to see if any of you already know. Are other states experiencing the same trends & how do they compare to California's numbers? My hunch is that it's similar but in a less accelerated way compared to California.
Matt, It's hard to tell with CO, but overall combined hunting/fishing license sales have had a slight increase. Hunting going slightly down and fishing going up. Now this doesn't break down the R/NR numbers, but I'm guessing when CPW added the fishing license onto the Big Game it helped bring those numbers up.

https://cpw.state.co.us/Documents/About/Reports/WAFWA-License-Fee-History.pdf
 

Bigolwiggler

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I added up all of the fees that I pay for hunting and fishing .

Deer (2 tags) bear , upland game , duck , fishing + steelhead and salmon
I came up with $238.75 per year as a resident .
This does not include all of the big game drawing fees that I pay for . Elk and Speed goat which are super rare to be drawn for . I feel fortunate that I have been drawn for elk twice in my life here .

In Idaho , the resident combo package which includes GUARANTEED tags for , Deer , Elk , Bear , Mtn Lion , Wolf ( rifle , archery or muzzleloader ) and full fishing license is $144.60

I know its apples and oranges .....
My friend who lives there has been pounding on me to move there as he did . I have to say , its tempting .

BOW
 

fish dog

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I'm thinking that the main reasons for the decline in license sales is just that facts that there are fewer areas you can hunt, further drives to get to them, less game to harvest, and even though there are fewer hunters overall, due to the smaller hunting areas, there's still more other hunters to contend with when you get there. Although price has something to do with it, I'm pretty sure if you could be assured great hunting in uncrowded conditions close to home you'd probably be willing to actually pay a little more for that. It's almost a math problem... smaller hunting areas - game + distance + people = fewer license sales.
 

ilovesprig

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In 1970, I could hunt deer anywhere in the state per zone dates....2 deer, A zone & anywhere else.....Wild pheasants were not only plentiful, the state planted 1000's thru out the state, honkers were everywhere in SoCal, we only had the Wister Unit, but tons of areas around the sea, Guzzlers (100's installed) and chukar had taken off in our deserts, Riverside and surrounding hills were loaded with valley quail, and dove shooting was normally no more than 45 minutes away.....I was raised in Long Beach!
 

Zach

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I'm not looking for it, but I would think Cal F&G would have population objectives, at least for big game.

Steve, my grandfather used to tell me about how he'd pheasant hunt in East San Diego county in the late 60's. 15 min drive from Lakeside to Santee.
 

socalcowboy

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Oh and I didnt even bring up the Non-lead ammo laws and ammo regulations - would think we are going to lose more hunters... Like I said when is enough is enough...
 

DKScott

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No lead anywhere for anything next year. That puts me on the hook to either get set-up to reload bismuth ($$$ and time) or buy a new bird gun, a couple grand or more to replace what I have been using all these years.
 

Hogskin

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DKScott said:
No lead anywhere for anything next year. That puts me on the hook to either get set-up to reload bismuth ($$$ and time) or buy a new bird gun, a couple grand or more to replace what I have been using all these years.
Or just buy your own piece of land and shoot lead on it, maybe come out about even. :smiley-punker-rock-on:
 

Hogskin

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DKScott said:
Be nice, wouldn't it? But the non-lead rule applies to everywhere in CA, even private land.
They would only know if you allowed them on your land. And why would you? Civil disobedience at its finest. :smiley-wnk-yellow:
 
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