posted in: Everglades

January 16, 2024

Hunting in the Everglades? Yes, That’s a Thing

Richard Martinez shared with TRCP how South Florida hunting offers a chance for backcountry adventure in a subtropical setting – without the need for a passport

When you think of the Everglades, you probably think of water.

Of airboats and alligators, miles of submerged sawgrass and cypress domes. Of swamps filled with mosquitos and invasive pythons. If you’re a saltwater angler, your mind might also wander to the amazing tarpon, snapper, snook, and myriad marine fish that benefit from Everglades conservation efforts.

What may not come to mind is dry land – and the hunting opportunities those thousands of acres provide.

“It’s more than just bugs and swamps and reptiles down here,” says Richard Martinez, a lifelong outdoor enthusiast and Gladesman. “Hunting the Everglades uplands is like nothing else in the country.”

South Florida is a well-known destination for Osceola turkey hunts. But Martinez, a diehard turkey hunter who’s been a guest on MeatEater and The Hunting Public podcast, also seeks public-land deer, wild hog, ducks, and small game. This is largely due to a network of not only wetlands and waterways but also a mosaic of upland pine islands and hardwood hammocks that game species rely on for bedding, foraging, and nesting.

“In other parts of the country, you typically have to travel hundreds or thousands of feet in elevation to experience changes in habitat types, but here the ecology can change within a few inches or feet,” says Martinez.

“I find it very humbling. It’s not a very human-friendly place.”

Click here to support critical Everglades habitat protection

A Backcountry Hunters & Anglers volunteer since 2018, Martinez currently serves on the Florida chapter’s board as chair. He helps coordinate initiatives and outreach across the state, and advocates on behalf of local sportsmen and sportswomen on habitat and access issues affecting South Florida. A strong hunting community exists in South Florida, including conservation associations and airboat and duck hunting clubs.

The Everglades are the largest subtropical wilderness in the country. And for Martinez the biggest draw of hunting in the Everglades is exploring their sheer wildness.

“I find it very humbling,” he says. “It’s not a very human-friendly place. I often feel like everything around me is telling me to go home when I’m there.”

Foreboding as it is, Everglades hunting means not just opportunities for Osceolas, migratory waterfowl, and non-migratory mottled ducks and black-bellied whistlers that are hard to find anywhere else, but an abundance of wildlife in a place that can test even the most seasoned outdoorsperson.

Martinez recalls one close encounter with a Florida panther (he’s had several confrontations with the big cats) while turkey hunting. He was on foot, traversing a “buggy trail” – Everglades parlance for offroad vehicle trails made for the region’s raised 4WD vehicles. “I came around a trail and was within 10 yards of a full-grown male panther. He bolted, but I nearly crapped my pants,” he laughs. “You don’t realize how big they are until you see them in real life.”

Like most other hunters and anglers, Martinez supports Everglades conservation efforts, but wants to make sure that hunters’ voices – in addition to the voices of anglers and conservationists – are being heard, whether looking at panther protections or determining conservation pathways to undo decades of damage from drainage canals and levees.

“Basically, half the Everglades are gone. The same amount of water remains, even though the land capable of holding onto that water is greatly diminished,” he says.

The problem is the need to put those water inputs somewhere for the land to reabsorb and filter out pollutants before they reach the ocean. Martinez says an overlooked result of human-manipulated water levels is negative impacts on hunting and habitat. “There’s a lot of push to put more water into certain interior areas that traditionally don’t hold as much water,” he says. “Those plant communities are now changing and not supporting game species like deer and turkey as well.”

Habitats found in slightly higher uplands which require little to no long-term inundation can be affected by water storage and release decisions that provide beneficial water treatment but keep plant communities submerged for extended periods. Martinez’s hunting community, alongside the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership and various conservation groups tackling the challenge of Everglades restoration, recognizes the complexities of trying to undo decades of destruction and neglect.

“We shouldn’t call it Everglades restoration. It’s really Everglades reinvention. And who gets to decide how we do this?”

Thanks to the advocacy of hunters, anglers, and conservationists, the Everglades remain a destination location for the adventure-seeking archer or fowler. But out-of-staters oft come unprepared, deceived by heavily edited online videos of the easiest, most successful hunts.

Martinez offers a few tips for those who want to plan an Everglades expedition. The first is to not bite off more than you can chew; to realize how hot and inaccessible the southernmost tip of the nation can be.

“You’re gonna have a real hard time adapting to bow season in August in South Florida,” he says. First-timers should consider a late-winter or spring hunt, perhaps for hogs or turkeys in March, when the weather is cooler and water levels have receded. Or go for mid-winter snipe, which Martinez says are “probably wing shooting’s best kept secret” in the Everglades. If you only have two or three field days to spare, and plan to be on public land, it’s also probably best to seek a local guide. 

Above all, if you head down to the Glades be sure to temper your expectations. “Don’t come to check a box and easily find success,” Martinez says. “Just come down for the experience.”

(Note: A version of this story also appeared in the Winter 2024 issue of Backcountry Journal.)

Click here to support Everglades habitat conservation efforts by insisting that lawmakers continue to provide funding for critical infrastructure work.

Also check out our November 2023 blog on Ryan Nitz hunting barefoot in the Everglades.

Photo credits: All images courtesy of Richard Martinez

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posted in: Everglades

December 6, 2023

Capt. Ryan Nitz: Sage of South Florida’s Largest Snook

The charter captain and barefoot bowhunter talks giant snook, just-as-giant snapper, and Everglades restoration efforts in the second wave of our two-part blog

You can’t talk about gigantic snook in South Florida and not talk about Capt. Ryan Nitz. Case in point, that picture of him above got you to read this blog. And how about these shots?

The inshore charter captain has made himself known for finding the biggest snook you can catch, which in Florida means 48 inches. Snook are one of the state’s most popular inshore sportfish, largely due to a reputation for putting up a serious fight. These fish are found around Florida, but Nitz says most are nowhere near the size as those found on the southeast coast of the state, perhaps due to an ample diet of baitfish and shrimp.

Enamored with both catching and filming snook, Nitz spent many years figuring out where and when to go, and what bait and lures to rig up, to regularly get himself on the stripe-sided fish. He started posting snook pictures taken from a GoPro on his head to social media, just for fun, and became an overnight sensation.

“The fish sold themselves really,” he says. They also landed him a business.

A Passion to Protect Snook

Nitz says the snook fishery has suffered heavily compared to just 20 years ago.

“Of course, we would love to go snook fishing year-round and keep our fish year-round,” he says, “but that’s not the world we live in.” 

Snook need protection from more than just overfishing. The fish are greatly affected by the quality, timing, and volume of water flowing from Lake Okeechobee and other areas of the Everglades out to South Florida’s estuaries. Conservation groups continually come together to try and tackle myriad problems caused by infrastructure built decades ago, designed to drain swamplands and reroute water to benefit agriculture and developing coastal communities. Nitz knows it’s not an easy task. Everglades restoration efforts must take a broad approach that considers everything from marine fisheries health to water quality to protecting interior Everglades upland island habitats and communities.

Click here to support Everglades conservation efforts by insisting that lawmakers continue to provide funding for critical infrastructure work.

Finding the Biggest, Baddest Inshore Fish

“They’re one of the meanest fish. They pull way harder than snook, pound for pound.”

Nitz is now voluntarily branching out to focus his charter business on species besides snook – both for sporting success and for conservation benefit – even though snook remain his “bread and butter.” Nitz says he’s recently dialed in on cubera snapper, the largest species of snapper, which can grow up to 125 lbs.

“They’re one of the meanest fish,” he says. “They pull way harder than snook, pound for pound.”

He stumbled into cuberas while snook fishing. He’d often cross paths with tarpon and jack crevalles when angling with live mullet or ladyfish. But something else kept taking his tackle; doing everything it could to get him into submerged rocks. Determined to land whatever was getting the best of him, he bought bigger rods and reels and figured out the best times to target the fish. It turns out what was snatching all his rigs were 30-inch cubera snapper. They’re now becoming one of his clients’ favorites.

In addition to cuberas, he’ll also be targeting more tarpon and permit this year, largely to take the pressure off the snook fishery due to a dwindling local population and overfishing. He says it’s not the first time he’s voluntarily avoided putting clients on overexploited fish, though it’s garnered him criticism and pushback from some captains and potential clients. He adds that besides knowing he’s helping out the resource, the younger crowd often offers him messages of support for taking care of the fishery and environment. 


Finding Common Ground Key to Conservation Efforts

South Florida and Everglades conservation efforts are not just about specific species in specific areas, like the snook where Nitz fishes, or cuberas, which he has helped Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission biologists tag for research projects. Though these fish species indeed rely on the necessary water quality and volume, and protection from overfishing, broader Everglades restoration is a vastly complex issue.

Many different government agencies, nonprofits, Tribal nations, and recreation groups are trying to find ways to restore ecosystems and recreation opportunities as much as possible under current constraints. Years of dedicated effort are now beginning to pay off through actions by partnerships formed within groups like the Everglades Coalition.

“All the ideas are already in place, and just need executed,” Nitz says. He explains that’s why it’s important to keep federal, state, and private dollars flowing in to address the enormous scale of Everglades conservation. “We know what needs to be done. We just need to do it.”

Nitz says he would like to see more funding go to infrastructure plans addressing where managers can store or safely move the region’s water over the next two decades, as they face a greatly reduced wetland footprint capable of holding and filtering that water, along with continued residential development pressure. A piece of that puzzle is already in place with construction now begun on the Everglades Agricultural Area Reservoir, which will help capture stormwater so it isn’t damaging habitat and can help prevent excessive freshwater discharges on the coast that damage marine fisheries. The project is part of a larger plan to allow more water to be directed southward to ultimately reach Everglades National Park and Florida Bay.

“We need to get everyone on the same page and address the biggest problems first.”

Nitz knows how vital it is that the broad range of conservation, preservation, hunting, fishing, and recreation groups find common ground on major Everglades restoration efforts to make sure collective energy is spent on achieving feasible solutions that all can agree on, rather than on fighting over differences.

“Sometimes people are busy pointing fingers, and when that happens nothing gets done,” he says. “We need to get everyone on the same page and address the biggest problems first.”

Forever a Florida Sportsman

Before his success and online notoriety as an expert snook fisherman, Nitz fished around Florida – from freshwater for largemouth bass in the Kissimmee area down to the saltwater in Biscayne Bay for bonefish and tarpon. He also hunted throughout the Everglades and beyond. Back then, all the hunting and fishing he did was for only fun.

Now, it’s just mostly for fun.   

Fishing and hunting remain Nitz’s passions and are central to everything in his life. Besides being a charter captain, he’s also a well-known barefoot hunter who targets Everglades deer, Osceola turkeys, and wild hogs. He even points out that every recent vacation he and his girlfriend have taken is to hunt in another state, just to mix it up. 

“When you’re hunting or fishing, you know how excited you can get about it,” he says. “But if you ask someone who doesn’t hunt or fish, they don’t know any feeling like it.”


Note: Part 1 of this blog series on Ryan Nitz, which focused on his hunting exploits in the Everglades, can be viewed here.

Click here to support Everglades conservation efforts by insisting that lawmakers continue to provide funding for critical infrastructure work.

Photo credits: All images courtesy of Ryan Nitz


posted in: Everglades

November 8, 2023

Ryan Nitz: The ‘Barefoot Bandit’ of the Everglades

In part one of a two-part blog, the charter captain and swamp stalker talks bowhunting close calls and using his social platform to push Everglades conservation

If you’re Ryan Nitz, South Florida hunting is all about risk taking. Along with a little sacrifice, and even more suffering.

After bushwhacking through the subtropical forest, the Florida native once swiped a massive, fuzzy, orange-striped puss caterpillar from the back of his neck. Almost immediately his vision blurred and profuse drool dripped from his slack mouth as he stumbled back to his truck. That injury was just to his neck. His feet take bigger risks.

That’s because Nitz often opts to hunt barefoot. Not in the cool, open woodlands or grassy meadows of middle America, but in the snake and spider-filled swamps of the Everglades. While wading northern Everglades haunts in search of goonie bucks, his feet find a lot more.

“I’ve literally stepped on a water moccasin,” Nitz says.

He trod on the squirming snake while walk-and-stalk hunting for deer, jumping away before it could strike because by sheer luck he’d stepped on the serpent’s neck. He’s also stumbled into an alligator while heading out of a cypress dome in fading twilight. He was marching toward his swamp buggy pickup spot, bow in hand, not paying attention as he tried to get a cell phone signal. He ran smack into a massive gator, luckily facing away from him.

“When I hit the tail of him, he did a one-eighty and snapped his jaws,” he says. “I’ll never forget the sound it made, like a 12-gauge shotgun going off. I could actually feel the percussion.”

While he says those reptile encounters were scary, they don’t compare to his worst barefoot experience: stepping on a scorpion. “The only way to describe it is if you stepped on a knife. I couldn’t put shoes on for like nine days.”

Risks Are Worth the Rewards

Why does Nitz, nicknamed by peers the “Barefoot Bandit,” risk exposing his feet for hunting? Because where he lives, the best place to find 10-point whitetail bucks is in inundated cypress swamps, where wearing boots means overheating, having soggy socks inside sunken boots, and making lots of noise. He also barefoot hunts, for deer as well as hogs and turkeys, for better maneuverability and stealth. He acknowledges the risk. But he’s onto something. Because this story is not just about his feet, but also his feats.

Feats garnered due to his early sporting success – and not just personally bagging the biggest South Florida bucks. Feats like the rush of getting to guide out-of-state hunters into pristine Florida uplands to call in Osceola turkeys. Or like changing his career from pest control specialist to one of the more highly sought after (and youngest) snook fishing guides in South Florida. And like being able to lend his experience to offer fishing and hunting trips that leave positive lifelong memories with those who hire him.

“I really like showing people what I’ve learned over the last 20 years,” he says. “And my clients are sometimes almost in tears because they had such a memorable day in the field with a family member or friend.”

Social Media Sensation

Nitz has spent his entire 32 years in coastal southeast Florida, in and near the northern reaches of the Everglades ecosystem. From turkey hunts in north Florida to whitetails in the Glades, he’s had hunting success throughout the state. But it was snook fishing in his backyard that really launched his business, Ryan Nitz Charters.

Nitz became an expert snook fisherman near his Jupiter home after spending every afternoon in high school wading along mangroves and under bridges in what he calls “the snook capital of North America.” Until seven years ago, it was only for fun. Back when he was working in pest control to earn a living. But as a wildlife photographer, he started taking pictures and filming experiences using the GoPro on his head. His girlfriend at the time insisted he set up social media accounts and post his unique photos from the field, which he’d resisted because he thought people often use these platforms for all the wrong reasons. But he gave in and started posting the snook shots online.

His Instagram following blew up.

Television shows began to find him through his social media accounts, as did a sudden rush of people willing to be clients. He suddenly realized he could make a living out of doing what he loved. So he went and earned his captain’s license, bought a better boat, and stopped doing pest control. The rest is history.

“Now I’ve made myself known for the biggest snook you can catch.”

Over time Nitz’s Instagram account has literally become his business. It also lets him showcase the deer and gobblers he still stalks for fun, and which ultimately led to him guiding hunters into some to the best Osceola turkey habitat in the state.

He says that much of the land he leases for 20 to 30 turkey hunting clients each year is in the eastern part of the Everglades, in the “most pristine Florida woods you can find.” But recently he’s been running into more and more problems with development. One 300-acre property he leases for hunting, along with the property to the north, will soon be developed.

“There goes another piece of the woods we’ll never get back,” he laments. “And all that new infrastructure will block the flow of water from the Kissimmee [River] to Biscayne Bay.”

A Mouthpiece for Conservation

Like the sacrifices he makes for a successful hunt, Nitz has come to recognize that if we care about the natural world and conservation, we all have to be willing to give something up. Like turning down clients who want to fish an area that’s been hit too hard one season, regardless of regulations, or offering time or effort to support restoration efforts. He also wants to use the platform he’s created for conservation.

“Because I have that voice and following, I want to use it while I’m still young.”

Click here to support critical Everglades restoration projects

Nitz readily admits that the South Florida areas he’s put in the spotlight have gotten more pressure due to his own social media popularity, but he intends to use this to his advantage now. With 50,000 followers, that means a lot of potential hunters and anglers to hopefully follow his lead on caring about conservation.

“Because I have that voice and following, I want to use it while I’m still young,” he says.

Nitz says the allure of Florida has always been the beautiful beaches, the inshore waterways, the vast swamps teeming with wildlife, and the resulting fishing and hunting. Without these, and the fish and wildlife they support, all Florida would have left are theme parks and new condos. He sees rampant development and the politics that enable it as the biggest problem Florida’s terrestrial ecosystems face, due to the flood of people moving to the state and too many decision-makers focused more on money than conservation.

“I wish somebody would have wild Florida at heart,” he says of the powers that be. “Right now is the time to act to have any chance of saving the state. And the Everglades are the heartbeat of Florida, so you have to start there. Once they’re gone, it’s all gone.”

Solutions Lie in Teamwork, Targeted Funding

Nitz believes one of the main pathways to conservation is getting organizations and individual hunters and anglers rowing in the same direction.

“It’s a great thing to have organizations like TRCP, because there’s strength in numbers,” he says, referring to the nonprofit’s large following in the sporting community and its connections to partner groups. Like TRCP’s involvement with the Everglades Coalition, a group of almost 60 conservation and environmental organizations dedicated to restoration of the Greater Everglades Ecosystem. The coalition’s efforts to restore North America’s largest wetland largely revolve around getting the sporting and conservation communities to notice, and to care.

“That’s really our only chance,” Nitz says. “Get enough people involved and pissed off enough about it that they’ll do something.”


Read part 2 of our blog on Ryan Nitz, which focuses on his fishing charter business and risks to giant snook.

Click here to support Everglades conservation efforts by insisting that lawmakers continue to provide funding for critical infrastructure work.

Want to Hunt or Fish with Nitz?
He still does everything through his Instagram account, including respond to inquiries. If you don’t use social media, just type ‘Ryan Nitz’ into Google to find him and request to book a charter. He’ll get back to you between barefoot backwater hunts and midnight snook runs. 

Photo credits: All images except of water moccasin courtesy of Ryan Nitz


posted in: Everglades

March 1, 2023

Construction of the Everglades Agricultural Area Reservoir Has Begun

Last week’s groundbreaking ceremony marks the first milestone for this critical piece of the massive Everglades restoration effort

In a major milestone for Everglades restoration, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has broken ground on the Everglades Agricultural Area Reservoir, which will collect, clean, and convey water south to reinvigorate wetlands and estuaries in South Florida.

While the Corps builds the reservoir to store excess water from Lake Okeechobee, the state-run South Florida Water Management District is responsible for constructing a treatment wetland that will clean the water. Construction began in 2020 and is expected to be completed by the end of this year. Together, these projects promise to reduce pollution, improve habitat, and restore the natural north-to-south water flows that once sustained the ecosystem.

In an on-site ceremony last week, many of our organizational partners were upheld as having played an essential role in advocating for the reservoir. Watch the video below for highlights and inspirational words from our friends at Captains for Clean Water and the Everglades Foundation.

This first step toward construction of the EAA Reservoir should be celebrated: Cleaner water and healthier sea grasses will benefit populations of spotted seatrout, redfish, tarpon, largemouth bass, and peacock bass when the reservoir is complete. Prevention of harmful algal blooms will also boost waterfowl populations and improve hunting and fishing opportunities.

But, as many said at the event, our work is not nearly done.

The TRCP is pushing Congress to allocate the funding necessary to complete this project and restore and conserve America’s Everglades. Take action using our simple advocacy tool to tell your lawmakers you support full funding and expedient completion of Everglades restoration work.

Photo by Captains for Clean Water


posted in: Everglades

January 12, 2023

TRCP’s Top Conservation Priorities for Congress in 2023

How lawmakers can build on recent conservation wins and advance habitat, access, and recreation solutions that were narrowly missed last session

The 117th Congress was a productive one for hunters and anglers. Together, our community succeeded in passing legislation to digitize and map public land access, provide landowners with tools to address our changing climate, invest in Everglades restoration, and, most recently, address the increasing spread of chronic wasting disease.

The 118th Congress is now underway, with narrow majorities in both the House and Senate and a considerable workload in the coming year. Fortunately, conservation issues have a way of garnering bipartisan agreement—a necessity as Congress takes up landmark legislation like the 2023 Farm Bill. The TRCP and our partners look forward to working with both sides of the aisle to advance conservation solutions in the coming months.

Here’s what’s at the top of our list for habitat and access in 2023.

Investing in Landowner-Led Conservation

Providing over $6 billion each year for voluntary, incentive-based conservation, the Farm Bill is the biggest piece of legislation impacting fish and wildlife in the U.S. Congress crafts a new Farm Bill every five years, and with the last bill expiring in September, 2023 is when decisions will be made that shape habitat on private lands for half a decade.

That is why the TRCP and our partner groups have been hard at work over the past several months to develop a comprehensive platform for what hunters and anglers would like to see in the 2023 bill.

This includes tripling investment in the popular Voluntary Public Access and Habitat Incentive Program, which provides dollars directly to state agencies to expand local walk-in hunting access opportunities by working with willing landowners. VPA-HIP provides a significant return on investment, with $5.20 in economic activity for every dollar invested in the program. That supports not just the landowners that choose to enroll, but also local businesses like game processors, diners, motels, gas stations, and more. The access, of course, is a boon for sportsmen and sportswomen, particularly in states where there are few public lands. In fact, when polled, nearly 60 percent of hunters in Illinois said that the land made available through the Illinois Recreational Access Program was the only huntable acreage accessible to them.

Beyond VPA-HIP, hunters and anglers are looking to lawmakers to improve the Conservation Reserve Program to ensure it remains a premier tool for habitat conservation, prioritize the enrollment of conservation easements to keep working lands and their habitats in place, and ensure that wildlife remain a co-equal focus of USDA conservation programs as climate mitigation becomes a growing priority in agriculture.

Outside of the Farm Bill, the North American Grasslands Conservation Act, which mirrors the successful landowner-led model of the North American Wetlands Conservation Act, remains our best opportunity to curb the rapid depletion of our nation’s most imperiled ecosystem.

Improving Recreation Opportunities on Public Lands

As lawmakers negotiated an end-of-year funding deal in late 2022, a proposed package of recreation and public lands bills wound up on the cutting room floor and should receive top billing in 2023.

This starts with the America’s Outdoor Recreation Act, a bipartisan package of bills developed by Senators Manchin and Barrasso to enhance recreation opportunities on public lands. Included are bills directing the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management to expand access to shooting ranges and complete road-use planning on their lands. Other bills would streamline permitting processes for guides and outfitters, limit the spread of invasive species, support gateway communities, and make it easier for outdoorsmen and women to experience our vast public lands.

In addition to the recreation-focused legislation, there are several locally developed land management changes and protections for top-notch hunting and fishing destinations like Oregon’s Owyhee Canyonlands, Nevada’s Ruby Mountains, and Colorado’s Thompson Divide. While some of these bills have been on the table for years, they could see renewed attention in the Senate.

The TRCP has remained engaged in these conversations and continues to work alongside Republicans and Democrats to advance these and other proposals to improve access and conserve one-of-a-kind habitat. Our community is confident in the ability of Congress to unite around these sensible natural resource policies, as they’ve proven able to do so through passage of legislation like the Great American Outdoors Act, America’s Conservation Enhancement Act, and John D. Dingell Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act in recent years.

Providing Necessary Resources for State Wildlife Management

For more than a century, sportsmen and sportswomen have led the charge on new ways to invest in fish and wildlife habitat. That leadership role continues in 2023 as we look for a way to pass the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act, landmark legislation that would provide $1.4 billion annually in dedicated funding to state wildlife agencies to conserve species of greatest concern. Not only would this new funding restore habitat and benefit hunters and anglers, it would also keep those species from being listed under the Endangered Species Act, minimizing untold costs to the energy industry, developers, and small businesses.

The RAWA was widely celebrated, enjoyed broad bipartisan support, and nearly made it to the finish line in 2022. Now, its base of support is greater than ever before. Hunters, anglers, conservationists, recreators, landowners, and business owners agree on the importance of passing RAWA. While the path is never easy, the TRCP and our partners will be working to expand congressional support, secure approval in the House Natural Resources Committee and the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, and send RAWA to the president’s desk in the 118th Congress.

Photo by Josh Metten

Accelerating Conservation and Restoration Projects

We’re expecting Congress to consider legislation to improve project approvals—especially for energy development, mining, and other infrastructure projects—early in 2023. It may be a surprise to some that challenges with permitting and approvals don’t only slow down development projects, but also the stream and wetland restoration, forest health, and other environmentally beneficial projects. Costly and often redundant planning processes discourage local partners from participating and result in wasted time and energy while federal funds remained locked up with the agencies, rather than benefitting fish and wildlife.

Additionally, when it comes to improving mining and renewable energy development on public lands, hunters and anglers have long fought for bipartisan solutions like the Public Land Renewable Energy Development Act and Good Samaritan Remediation of Abandoned Hardrock Mines Act. PLREDA, for example, would balance renewable energy development and habitat needs, while funding for fish and wildlife conservation projects. The Good Samaritan legislation would reduce existing barriers to abandoned hard rock mine cleanup, making it easier for local partners to help improve water quality and habitat.

Accelerating conservation and restoration projects will ensure that the funds made available by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and other recent legislative successes touch down on the landscape. In the year ahead, the TRCP will be engaged on both sides of the aisle, bringing conservation and habitat restoration priorities to the permitting conversation taking place in Congress.


For more information, and to take action in support of these critical conservation priorities in the year ahead, visit the TRCP Action Center. To follow important conservation legislation as it makes its way through Congress, follow @theTRCP on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

Top photo by Aaron James.



Theodore Roosevelt’s experiences hunting and fishing certainly fueled his passion for conservation, but it seems that a passion for coffee may have powered his mornings. In fact, Roosevelt’s son once said that his father’s coffee cup was “more in the nature of a bathtub.” TRCP has partnered with Afuera Coffee Co. to bring together his two loves: a strong morning brew and a dedication to conservation. With your purchase, you’ll not only enjoy waking up to the rich aroma of this bolder roast—you’ll be supporting the important work of preserving hunting and fishing opportunities for all.

$4 from each bag is donated to the TRCP, to help continue their efforts of safeguarding critical habitats, productive hunting grounds, and favorite fishing holes for future generations.

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