The foundation for wildlife conservation in not only Arizona but throughout America is called the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation. The Arizona Game & Fish Department operates under these guidelines.
Sportsmen are the backbone of these concepts and support wildlife with not only their dollars, but by performing thousands of hours of volunteer work each year to improve habitat for all species.
There are seven core concepts of this model.
1) Wildlife is held in the public trust. Wildlife belongs to everyone.
2) Regulated commerce in wildlife. By regulation of harvest, the sustainability of wildlife is ensured.
3) Hunting and angling opportunity for all. The opportunity to participate in hunting and angling along with wildlife conservation is guaranteed to all citizens in good standing, not by social status or privilege, financial capacity or land ownership.
4) Hunting and angling laws are created through a public process. Hunting seasons, harvest limits and penalties imposed for violations are established through laws and regulations.
5) Hunters, anglers, boaters and shooters fund conservation. Hunting and fishing license sales and excise taxes on hunting, shooting and fishing equipment and motor boat fuels pays for the management of all wildlife, including wildlife species that are not hunted.
6) Wildlife in an international resource. Proper stewardship of wildlife and habitats is both a source of national pride and the opportunity to share natural resources. Cooperating management of migratory waterfowl is an example of successful international collaboration.
7) Science is the basis for wildlife policy. The limited use of wildlife as a renewable natural resource is based on sound science. We learn as we go, adapting management strategies based upon monitoring to achieve sustainability.
The Arizona Game & Fish Department receives no state tax dollars. Hunters and anglers pay for wildlife conservation in Arizona through their purchase of licenses, tags and stamps, and excise taxes.
Individuals who are not hunters or anglers can support the department’s mission of wildlife conservation by purchasing a hunting or fishing license.