To address the issue of declining access to private forest land in the United States for hunting, over 1,000 Minnesota family forest owners were surveyed to estimate the cost of acquiring non-exclusive public hunting access rights. The results indicate landowner interest in selling access rights is extremely modest. Using binary logistic regression, the mean annual compensation required to purchase public access on these lands is estimated at $50 per acre. Significant predictors of landowner willingness to sell unrestricted public hunting access rights are the compensation offered, owner's use of the property for hunting, land's hunting quality and market value, location of owner's residence, current posting practices, future ownership intentions, and concern for property damage. The high payment required to purchase this right reflects the value owners attach to exclusive hunting rights, cost of enrolling in a government-sponsored program, and inability to control who and how many hunt on the property.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
An estimated 3% of private landowners receive compensation for allowing hunter access to their property (Cordell et al., 1999). The formal arrangement for selling this access right is generally one of three types. The first is a hunting lease, which is a legal Funding for this study was provided by the Blandin Foundation and the Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station (Project MN-42-049).
- Contingent valuation
- Public access
- Wildlife recreation