Supply of Private Acreage for Recreational Deer Hunting in Georgia
Understanding factors that influence the supply of private acreage for lease hunting has become increasingly important to sustaining hunting. Improving on existing studies that mostly utilized landowners’ responses from contingent surveys, we adopted a different approach to this question by analyzing 2009 market data from Georgia counties. Results from multivariate regression indicate that supply of private lease hunting acres was influenced by: (a) site characteristics such as the relative proportion of certain habitat types; (b) market forces and access factors such as rural road networks and proximity to population centers; and (c) spillover effects of conservation programs such as wildlife management areas (WMAs), and government payments to landowners through a variety of habitat enhancement programs. The findings provide support for policies that increase public investment in habitat conservation on private and public lands or assist landowners with developing innovative marketing strategies to benefit from the recreational potential of their lands.