An Exploratory Study of the Relationship of Attitude and the Perception of Constraints to Hunting


  • Sheila J. Backman
  • Brett A. Wright


Attitude, constraints, hunting, former hunter, nonparticipant


Hunting is a sport in decline in many parts of the country. This is a serious problem for wildlife managers, since the present system of funding wildlife programs is extremely dependent on sportsman-generated revenues. It is estimated that, by the year 2040, that participation in big-game hunting will decrease by 14%. The purpose of this study was to examine differences and similarities in the perception of constraints among four groups of nonparticipant hunters: (a) nonparticipants having a positive attitude toward hunting; (b) nonparticipants having a negative attitude toward hunting; (c) former participants having a positive attitude toward hunting; and (d) former participants having a negative attitude toward hunting. Using data from the Virginia Wildlife Recreation Study, 527 respondents were classified in one of the four groups. Six factors emerged as significant constraints to participation: monetary cost, interest/preference, access/ opportunity, physical effort, time costs, and public land conflicts. Further, results of the analyses of variance and follow-up Duncan's Multiple Range tests revealed there were significant differences between the four groups of nonparticipants and their perception of constraints.





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