Mule Deer Association lands grant

$61.3 million in funding will protect habitats

Improved deer habitat on the Western Slope is key to healthy herds. A grant from Colorado Parks and Wildlife will allow the Colorado Mule Deer Association to conduct habitat improvement operations.



The Colorado Mule Deer Association has received a $25,000 grant for deer habitat from Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

The grant came from some one-time funding Parks and Wildlife received from the Colorado Legislature to support hunting and angling organizations doing outreach toward novice hunters, including minority and underserved youth throughout Colorado.

The Colorado Mule Deer Association applied and competed for grant funding along with several other outdoor-related organizations from across the state.

The funds will assist the Grand Junction based nonprofit organization to continue offering a variety of programs and projects that directly benefit Colorado’s wildlife and sportsmen and sportswomen of all ages and backgrounds.

“For many years, the Colorado Mule Deer Association has been involved in a wide variety of important programs, many geared toward introducing the younger generation and women to hunting,” said Ron Velarde, Parks and Wildlife’s Northwest Region manager. “They are a valuable partner, and we look forward to continuing a strong relationship with this important organization. These funds will help them continue the good work they are doing for the state’s wildlife, hunters or anyone that enjoys the outdoors.”

The Colorado Mule Deer Association, recognizing the importance of healthy wildlife habitat, has been working with landowners and energy companies on several habitat-improvement projects.

However, the costs of the programs and projects are enormous. According to the association, each mentored, private-land hunt is estimated to cost approximately $3,500.

Participants are not charged for the opportunity.

“We are very thankful for the grant,” Colorado Mule Deer Association Chairman Phil Johnson said. “Much of what we do involves significant investment, not only in time, but financially as well. These funds will go a long way to help us continue our mission and our important partnership with Colorado Parks and Wildlife.”

Johnson said the grant will assist in the purchase of firearms, archery equipment, hunting supplies and storage vehicles, all critical to providing a memorable and beneficial experience for novice, minority and underserved hunters.

In addition, ongoing and future habitat projects will continue to be funded.

Recognizing the importance of strong relationships with like-minded organizations, Parks and Wildlife created Partners in the Outdoors to foster relationships and encourage teamwork with groups and organizations that demonstrate the benefits of outdoor recreation to the public.


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