So they incorporated FNAWS as a nonprofit and in 1979 started approaching the various states with wild sheep populations and saying, in essence, Give us one or two sheep hunting permits, we'll auction them to the highest bidder, and we'll give the proceeds right back to you, earmarked for conservation.
Right alongside an article celebrating how FNAWS auctions help ejidatarios "learn about the economic value of wildlife and continued conservation practices" lie advertisements that make a liberal worry he's in NRA-wacko territory after all.
FNAWS is different, says Lavigne, in that the hunts provide conservation funds without promoting a larger marketplace for endangered wildlife.
FNAWS itself currently auctions 25 to 30 permits per year, generating more than $2 million annually, for a to-date total of more than $24 million.
When Merkel took him to a FNAWS convention, it made such an impression that Drettmann eventually put hunting and wildlife conservation at the center of his life.