Hunting-Related Spending Up Despite Recession

From this story in the Montgomery Advertiser:
_If you're looking to an aspect of American life that hasn't been affected by the recession, your hunt stops at hunting. The National Shooting Sports Foundation, which tracks hunting trends across the country, reports money spent on hunting gear is way up. According to the group's Firearms and Ammunition Industry Economic Impact Report for 2010, companies that made, distributed or sold sporting firearms, ammunition and supplies generated a $27.8 billion impact nationwide in 2009, compared with a $19.1 billion impact in 2008. The same companies paid excise taxes of $450 million in 2009 compared with $327 million in 2008, the report states.

__Hunting isn't recession-proof, but the activity does survive in tough times, said Gary Moody, chief of the wildlife division of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. "People are going to hunt," he said. "They may cut back in some areas, and they may not go hunting as often as they would in good times, but people are going to hunt." "People are going to hunt," he said. "They may cut back in some areas, and they may not go hunting as often as they would in good times, but people are going to hunt."

Dustin Tyler, a Millbrook hunter, agrees. He recently was buying shotgun shells for opening day of Alabama's dove season. "I know a lot of folks who have really cut back on things since it started getting tough," he said. "But all my friends that hunt continue to hunt. It's a great way for the family to spend quality time together. This is Alabama. We hunt here. "I'm sure people feel the same way in Kansas, Texas and other states where hunting is big." In Alabama, hunting generates an annual economic impact of about $840 million a year, according to the state's conservation agency.

According to the National Sporting Goods Association, more than 18.8 million people hunted with firearms in 2009. Larry Weindruch, spokesman for the association, singled out the sale of shotguns as an example of how spending has increased in hunting pursuits. In 2001 nationwide, people spent about $381.9 million on shotgun purchases, compared with about $958.1 million in 2009._

What about you? Spending more, the same, less?