The US Department of Interior announced on June 13, 2017 that they will be distributing $1.1 billion in annual funding to state wildlife agencies from revenues generated by the Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration and Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Acts for 2017. Known as the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program, more than $19 billion in funding has been distributed to the states for conservation and recreation projects since the beginning of this program. States must match a certain percentage of the funding.
Since President Obama’s Presidential Memorandum in 2014 outlining expectations for Federal agencies to become proactive with pollinator conservation, Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program funds have also been used to take a lead role to help save the monarch butterfly.
Saving the Monarch Butterfly
‘In this USFWS video “Saving The Monarch Butterfly,” Kim Betton reports on research and partnership successes through the Monarch Joint Venture, State Wildlife Action Plans, the value of educating our youth – our future conservationists, and how you can get involved to help make a difference.’
The video shows the Monarch Lab nursery growing Tropical Milkweed and staff feeding Tropical Milkweed leaves to the pupating monarchs. I questioned this because of the concerns conservationists have about this non-native plant. See MJV’s factsheet on Tropical Milkweed. Consequently, I contacted Karen Oberhauser of the University of Minnesota’s Monarch Lab. Karen tells me “Tropical milkweed is very easy to grow in a greenhouse, and we use it to feed caterpillars all the time. It is fine to place the larvae on the plants. The issues are the timing and location of milkweed availability, not the plant itself. The fact sheet says nothing about problems with monarchs feeding on the plant.”
Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program State Allotments
Wisconsin will be receiving a total of $34,459,294 to be used for wildlife and sport fish restoration which includes hunter safety education and wildlife management.
Where does the money come from?
Funding for the Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration and Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Acts comes primarily from a tax on the sale of hunting equipment, ammunition and firearms and on the sale of fishing equipment and boat fuel.
See also Wisconsin’s Forestry Budget