Alabama NWTF Chapter donates more than $126k for wildlife management

National Wild Turkey Federation Representative Craig Scruggs, left, presents a check to Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division Director Chuck Sykes. (Contributed Photo)

National Wild Turkey Federation Representative Craig Scruggs, left, presents a check to Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division Director Chuck Sykes. (Contributed Photo)

The Alabama Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF) recently allocated $126,053.68 in Hunting Heritage Super Funds for wild turkey projects in Alabama. Of that total, about $44,000 was donated to the Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF) to fund projects including wildlife habitat management and the publication of the annual wild turkey report, Full Fans & Sharp Spurs.

Approximately $33,000 was approved for other projects statewide including funding to improve wild turkey habitats on public lands as well as to help launch outdoor education programs in schools. Also, more than $49,000 of NWTF Super Funds has been reserved for land acquisition to help support the purchase of Wildlife Management Area (WMA) tracts. This funding to support the enhancement of turkey habitat, increased access opportunities, and educational programs is an excellent fit for the NWTF’s new initiative “Save the Habitat, Save the Hunt.”

According to WFF Division Director Chuck Sykes, most of the WFF dollars will be used on Alabama’s WMAs throughout the state to support habitat management and other wild turkey programs.

“About $25,000 of this generous donation offers us access to federal matching dollars which makes the donation go even further,” Sykes said. “This federal match is an important part of how our department is funded. The money generated by hunting license sales is matched through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. We don’t receive an appropriation from the state’s General Fund, so contributions such as this are extremely important. I thank NWTF and the Alabama Chapter Board of Directors for helping to support our efforts in Alabama.”

Some of the grant money will also be used to purchase much-needed wildlife habitat management equipment. In addition to the monetary donation, the Alabama NWTF chapter provides financial support for prescribed burning projects that help restore longleaf pine habitat, the Archery in the Schools state championship (an annual event for school students across the state), and the Becoming an Outdoors-Woman program, which introduces women to a wide variety of outdoor activities.

For more information about the NWTF, visit www.nwtf.org.

The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through four divisions: Marine Resources, State Lands, State Parks, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. To learn more about ADCNR, visit www.outdooralabama.com.