South Dakota’s pheasant hunting season kicks off in a few weeks, and the numbers look more than promising

SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO) – South Dakota’s pheasant hunting season begins in a few weeks and the numbers look more than promising.

Why wildlife officials are expecting big things this year and hunters gearing up for the start of the season.

Things are looking up for the pheasant hunting season this year in South Dakota.

This is why Alex Jensen and a handful of his colleagues and some of their clients have come here to the Hunters Pointe Shooting Complex near Humboldt.

“I’ve heard there are going to be a lot of birds this year, so we’re just practicing,” Jensen said.

Jensen generally hunts north of Pierre during pheasant season.

Over the years this has traditionally been one of the hotspots for pheasants and he expects the same this year.

“Without a doubt, there are a lot of birds up there and a lot of good families,” Jensen said.

Tony Nour is also aiming for big things this year, but he says he loves being outdoors and that’s why he came here today.

“It’s a great way to get together with co-workers and business colleagues and have a good time before the hunting season,” Nour said.

According to the Game, Fish and Parks Department, last year’s pheasant hunting season was spectacular in South Dakota, with hunters collecting more than a million birds.

While 2020 was amazing, the G, F&P says 2021 is shaping up to be even better.

A mild winter plus a dry spring and summer add to large numbers this year for pheasant numbers, possibly even a record.

Pheasant hunting in South Dakota has been a long tradition for decades for many hunters; even those who come every year from out of state.

Some believe South Dakota could see even more hunters out of state this year, due to the pandemic.

“I think South Dakota is going to be a really big magnet for hunters this year again, we’re going to stay open and that’s a really big thing, we’re going to use it as a way to bring people here for the tourism and just a good opportunity for economic development, ”Jensen said.

The state says hunters inject millions of dollars into the economy every year.

And with a record number of pheasants this year, they expect businesses to thrive; which will be good news for some of the bars, restaurants and hotels that have struggled during the pandemic.

But for now, these guys have their sights set on clay pigeons to prepare for what could be the best pheasant hunting season ever.

“I love being outside and watching the dogs work and watching the birds fly away, it’s a South Dakota tradition,” Jensen said.

The traditional opening of the season runs from October 16 to January 31, 2022.

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