The percentage of Minnesotans purchasing a fishing or hunting license has been declining for about 30 years, according to the Minnesota DNR. They hope to reverse that trend.

About 40 percent of residents purchased a fishing license in the 1960s and 1970s, but that number is down to 27 percent, the DNR reported in a news release on their website and sent to media outlets. They also report that just 12 percent of state residents obtain a hunting license.

The Department of Natural Resources will hold a conference August 26-27 to discuss ideas to recruit and retain hunters and anglers.

In the news release, DNR education superviser Jeff Ledermann says, "In the 1960s and decades before, hunting and fishing was simply a part of people's heritage, and it was a relatively low cost social activity that provided food for the table." He says times have changed.

Ledermann added that due to the economic and conservation benefits of hunting and fishing officials are concerned about the decline. He says, "That's why we're bringing experts and organizations together around boosting hunter and angler numbers."

The conference will feature national experts and representatives of local organizations. It is open to the public and will be held at the DNR headquarters in Brooklyn Center. Online registration is available.

Roy Koenig, Townsquare Media

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