When thousands of pheasant hunters wade into cattails and grasslands for the Minnesota pheasant opener that begins at 9 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 12, they will be contributing to the economic health of the state’s economy. 

More than a half-million Minnesotans and nonresidents hunt in Minnesota each year. Collectively they spend an estimated $725 million per year, according to the 2011 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation.

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According the 2011 national survey direct expenditures by hunters in Minnesota include:

  • $400 million on equipment such as guns, ammunition and special clothes.
  • $235 million on trip related expenses such as food, lodging and transportation.
  • $90 million on other expenses such as land leasing, hunting land ownership, magazines, etc.

The average amount spent per hunter in 2011 was $1,412, up from $889 in 2006 when the previous survey was taken. Direct retail sales related to upland bird hunting totaled about $121 million. When combined with angling, Minnesota hunters and anglers support nearly 48,000 Minnesota jobs.