The Model

The concept that wildlife belongs to the people, and not governments or individual people, originated centuries ago in England when their Magna Carta was signed in 1215.

The first landmark U.S. Supreme Court case on who owns wildlife was handed down in Martin v. Waddell (1842).

Over the years court cases, dealing with wildlife ownership, have evolved into what is termed the Public Trust Doctrine, a principle that governments are required to preserve certain resources for reasonable public use.

Upon this foundation evolved the concept of The North American Model for Wildlife Conservation. The Model is guided by seven principles:

  1. Wildlife resources are a public trust.
  2. Markets for game are eliminated.
  3. Allocation of wildlife is by law.
  4. Wildlife can be killed only for legitimate purpose.
  5. Wildlife is considered an international resource.
  6. Science is the proper tool to inform wildlife policy.
  7. Democracy of hunting is standard – the freedom to hunt and fish is for all.