Ephraim, Utah – Pheasant hunters and conservationists within Sanpete County have formed Utah’s newest Pheasants Forever (PF) chapter. Known as the Central Utah Runnin’ Ring-Necks Chapter of PF, the group plans to have an impact on youth involvement in hunting and wildlife habitat conservation practices. “We need to give kids a chance to really experience the outdoors,” explained Scott Evans, Runnin’ Ring-Necks president and avid pheasant hunter, “If we can get youth involved in activities such as hunting, then they’ll come to appreciate the importance of conserving wildlife habitat.
I fear that without this understanding, future generations will lose hold of the natural world altogether.”In 2009, the chapter plans to build on Pheasants Forever’s No Child Left Indoors® initiative , a new initiative that’s part of a national movement aimed at getting youth unplugged from electronics and turned on to the outdoors, nature and wildlife. The Runnin’ Ring-Necks plan on hosting youth hunts focusing on outdoors skills, safety and ethics. With current members having previous experience hosting such events, the chapter knows the positive influence these hunts can have on the lives of children. “It’s vitally important that today’s youth – the future land stewards of our country – know what’s right and wrong while in the field and also how to get the most out of their experiences,” stated Evans.
To date, the pheasant population in Sanpete County is relatively low and there is a need increase the amount of quality habitat. “We know there is plenty of work to do,” Evans said, “But if we develop relationships with local farmers and help them create more habitat, then we’re also creating more chances for our community – especially our children – to get outside and away from the TV. It’s truly a win-win situation for all parties involved, especially for the pheasants!”
Currently, habitat improvement opportunities focus on private land owners in the Ephraim and surrounding area. “Working in the future with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources and local Soil and Water Conservation District will provide additional opportunities for the Runnin’ Ring-Necks chapter to enhance Pheasants Forever’s wildlife habitat mission,” said Ryan Storm, Regional Representative for PF in Utah.
The chapter has also elected Dean Olson of Ephraim as treasurer and Trent Taylor of Manti as habitat chair. For information about the chapter and upcoming meetings and events, contact Scott Evans at (435)445-9393 or via email at Clarissa84646@yahoo.com.
For more information on PF in Utah, to start a chapter or join one of the state’s already existing chapters, contact Ryan Storm at (618) 351-1234 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Historically, Utah’s six PF chapters have spent over $318,000 to complete nearly 500 habitat projects which have benefitted 4,400 acres of habitat for wildlife. PF empowers chapters with the responsibility to determine how 100% of their locally raised conservation funds will be spent – the only national conservation organization that operates through this truly grassroots structure. As a result, chapter volunteers are able to see the fruits of their efforts locally, while belonging to a larger national organization with a voice on federal and state conservation policy.
Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever are non-profit conservation organizations dedicated to the protection and enhancement of pheasant, quail, and other wildlife populations in North America through habitat improvement, land management, public awareness, and education. PF/QF has more than 130,000 members in 700 local chapters across the continent.
For additional information about Pheasants Forever, please visit www.PheasantsForever.org.