NV Hunter Praises Newly Minted National Monument
Monday, April 10, 2023
Following the recent designation of Avi Kwa Ame National Monument in Southern Nevada, one hunter says he is pleased to know the roughly half-million acres of land will be preserved.
Garrett Hammack is a board member of the Nevada Wildlife Federation and said Avi Kwa Ame, known by the Mojave Tribe as Spirit Mountain, is a place he has spent lots of time hunting and recreating.
As a father, he said it is important for him to know his son will be able to see and enjoy the place that has meant so much to him over the years.
"The biggest thing for me is carrying it forward for the kids," said Hammack, "because I have a one and a half year old, and looking forward, having that land protected and knowing that I'll be able to take my son out there is the biggest impact."
Hammack added that hunters like himself - as well as conservationist and tribal stakeholders - were all happy to see Avi Kwa Ame get granted federal protection, which will prevent the vast desert landscape from development and privatization, which he said is crucial for many wildlife species like the desert bighorn sheep.
Hammack said Avi Kwa Ame will still be accessible and useful for outdoor recreation activities such as hunting and off-highway vehicle use.
He said it is now defined under rules and regulations, which are there to protect the land.
"A lot of people that aren't from the desert, don't recreate in the desert, drive through them and think there is nothing out there and it's a wasteland," said Hammack. "They might say, 'you know, it's the best land to level and put up wind energy and solar.' It would really destroy our desert ecosystems."
Hammack added that he would like other more responsible forms of clean energy to be explored and incentivized - such as government subsidies for residential solar panels in the cities, which he says won't cause a disruption to natural ecosystems.
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