The 2023 Special Report on Hunting and the Shooting Sports provides a comprehensive look at the more than 14 million Americans ages 6 and over who participated at least once in hunting with both firearms and archery equipment in 2022. The report identifies trends and includes detailed information about participation including motivations, barriers, and preferences of participants.

Highlights from the report include:

  • In 2022, 14.7 million Americans hunted at least one time with a bow or a firearm.

  • Hunting participation increased 1% in 2022 compared to 2021.

  • Bowhunting (archery) and hunting with a handgun increased, while hunting with a rifle and hunting with a shotgun remained even with 2021 numbers.

  • Hunting-license sales dropped 3.1% in 2022, bringing license sales back down to 2019 pre-pandemic levels.

  • Harvesting food and meat remains a key inspiration to hunters, as do the desire to be close to nature and the challenge hunting provides. Limited access to quality hunting grounds and the high cost of ammunition were the most cited difficulties in 2022.

This special report was developed in partnership with the Outdoor Foundation, which works with partners across the country to address equity barriers and help make the outdoors accessible for all.

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