Thad Cochran
Thad Cochran

WASHINGTON, D.C. – -(AmmoLand.com)- Former U.S. Senator Thad Cochran of Mississippi passed away this week, following his retirement from the Senate last year.

During his 45-year career the Senator served as Chairman of the Appropriations Committee and as the Chairman for the Committee on Agriculture, Forestry and Nutrition. Cochran was the longest serving Senator of the Migratory Bird Conservation Commission (MBCC) with 36 years of service. The Senator was instrumental in wetlands related programs such as the Wetlands Reserve Easement program in the Farm Bill and the North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA).

“For more than 45 years the conservation, agriculture and wildlife communities had a fearless leader in Thad Cochran,” said retiring DU CEO Dale Hall. “The Senator inherently understood the partnership between agriculture and wetlands conservation, not only for the environmental benefits, but the societal ones too. To many Americans, wetlands symbolize a waterfowling and hunting tradition, a tradition that Senator Cochran tried to preserve throughout his career. Our nation owes a great debt to Senator Cochran. Our public lands, wildlife and wetlands have all benefitted from his unwavering service and dedication.”

During Senator Cochran’s tenure on the MBCC, the USFWS used Duck Stamp dollars to conserve a total of 2,391,263 acres, which included 709,128 acres in 131 national wildlife refuges spanning 39 states. And since the inception of NAWCA in 1989, Sen. Cochran and his colleagues approved more than 2,644 projects that conserved more than 29.8 million acres of bird habitat across North America.

As Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee, Senator Cochran also worked hard to strengthen America's rural communities by developing and funding programs for which farmers, ranchers, and landowners depend, while also recognizing the importance for our nation’s wetlands. The Senator was influential

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