Minnesota hunters shot more ducks and pheasants last year than in 2011, probably because more hunters bought licenses, the Department of Natural Resources reported Thursday.
But they harvested fewer ruffed grouse.
Statewide estimates show that hunters harvested 264,000 pheasants, 835,000 ducks and 355,000 ruffed grouse.
The number of hunters of those three species all increased, too. An estimated 84,000 people hunted pheasants, 90,400 hunted ducks and 97,000 hunted ruffed grouse.
The results are from the DNR's annual small game survey. See more details in Sunday's Outdoors.
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The DNR says members of the committee will contribute to the broader understanding of biological, social and economic aspects of the lake
The Department of Natural Resources will have field testing stations in Kandiyohi, Meeker, Morrison, Pope, Stearns, Swift and Todd counties.
Results mirror results in Minnesota, South Dakota.
Previously, the DNR said it would wait until an annual fall walleye survey was complete on Mille Lacs before determing whether winter walleye fishing could begin Dec. 1.
Deadline to apply is Sept. 24