EDGEFIELD, S.C. — Bass Pro Shops founder and CEO Johnny Morris recently presented the National Wild Turkey Federation with a check for $200,000 to support the organization’s efforts to conserve wildlife and habitat across a broad expanse of the Midwest and Southeastern United States.
The funding from the Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Outdoor Fund, presented during the 44th NWTF Convention and Sport Show, will be instrumental in restoring native forest and grassland ecosystems, promoting water conservation activities and improving forest health on public and private lands across a 26-state region.
“Along with these activities, there will be an emphasis on integrating water conservation practices to ensure we are holistically addressing the habitat conservation needs of all wildlife,” NWTF Chief Conservation Officer Ross Melinchuk said.
The Midwest and Southeastern forest, grassland and aquatic habitats are home to hundreds of species of wildlife, many of which are threatened or imperiled, including red-cockaded woodpecker, bobwhite quail, hellbender salamanders and massasauga rattlesnakes as examples. All of these, wild turkeys, and more stand to benefit from the planned habitat restoration activities.
“As the NWTF has demonstrated with previous Outdoor Fund grants, they will increase this funding through partnerships with private landowners, private industry and state and federal agencies,” said Bob Ziehmer, Bass Pro Shops senior director of conservation. “The NWTF’s ability to leverage this money through partnerships and maximize conservation delivery and impact are key reasons they were selected for the grant.”
Bass Pro Shops and Johnny Morris are among the longest running and biggest supporters of the NWTF. This partnership has resulted in millions of dollars directed toward conservation and hunting heritage work across America.
Guided by the visionary leadership of Morris, the Outdoor Fund empowers Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Outdoor Fund 200 million annual customers to support conservation efforts by rounding up their purchases. Rallying passionate customers alongside dedicated team members, industry partners and leading conservation organizations like NWTF, Bass Pro is creating North America’s largest conservation movement to collectively shape the future of the outdoors and all who love it for generations to come.
“The NWTF has enjoyed a long and productive partnership with both Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's individually, and most recently under the combined flagship of Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's,” NWTF CEO Becky Humphries said. “We look forward to continued collaboration with Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s to expand our conservation footprint beyond what either of us can do individually, and in doing so, benefit a multitude of species treasured by millions of Americans.”
About the National Wild Turkey Federation
When the National Wild Turkey Federation was founded in 1973, there were about 1.3 million wild turkeys in North America. After decades of work, that number hit a historic high of almost 7 million turkeys. To succeed, the NWTF stood behind science-based conservation and hunters’ rights. Today, the NWTF is focused on the future of hunting and conservation through its Save the Habitat. Save the Hunt. initiative – a charge that mobilizes science, fundraising and devoted volunteers to conserve or enhance more than 4 million acres of essential wildlife habitat, recruit at least 1.5 million hunters and open access to 500,000 acres for hunting. For more information, visit NWTF.org.