Fall and Winter Hunting Seasons Give Farmers Time to Evaluate for Business Opportunities
As fall turkey, deer, pheasant and duck hunting seasons open, the Agricultural Marketing Resource Center (AgMRC) at Iowa State University reminds value-added agriculture producers that leased hunting may be away to gain additional income off the land. For the landowner, farmers and ranchers, hunting leases are a means by which to generate additional income from wildlife resources that the landowners sustain through their crops and habitat maintenance. Funds from lease or fee hunting can be used to supplement the farm or ranch’s income or provide cash that can be used for general habitat improvement (planting windbreaks, shelter belts or food plots; providing water resources or feeders). Land, wetland and stream habitats and wildlife resources are increasingly valuable as hunters become more willing to pay for access to trophy animals, exotic species, maintained numbers of stocked birds or a more exclusive or quality outdoor experience. Formal lease agreements may take many forms, seasonal, year-round and by the day or week. Revenue usually is directly related to the quality of the habitat, species availability and the overall quality of the outdoor experience. For more information on leases and sample contract agreements, visit the AgMRC website at: http://www.agmrc.org/commodities__products/agritourism/hunting_leases.cfm.