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Pheasant Hunting and Economics

by DC Staff Report


The ring-necked pheasant means fun and memories for South Dakotans and its visitors, but it also means big money to main streets across the state.

The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) statistics reveal 150,037 pheasant hunters spent over $170.1 million dollars in the state in 2015. A further breakdown reveals that 84,903 nonresident hunters spent $140.3 million, while 65,134 resident hunters spent approximately $29.8 million in 2015.

“South Dakota is a hunting destination for people across the country and the world,” said GFP Secretary, Kelly Hepler. “Pheasant hunting plays a big part in our quality of life, and it continues to be an economic driver for businesses across the state.”

The counties with the highest hunter spending for 2015 were: Tripp, Brule, Brown, Lyman, Spink and Beadle.

“It’s no accident that the places where the most money is spent by pheasant hunters are the places where large tracts of quality habitat exist,” concluded Hepler. “Ag producers know that quality habitat means high pheasant numbers; which results in thousands of visitors wearing blaze orange.”