PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Department says pheasant hunters spent more than $170 million dollars in the state last year.

Nearly 85,000 nonresident hunters spent $140.3 million. The state’s 65,000 or so resident hunters spent about $29.8 million.

GF&P Secretary Kelly Hepler says pheasant hunting continues to be an economic driver for businesses across the state.

Spending levels peaked in Tripp, Brule, Brown, Lyman, Spink and Beadle counties. Hepler says it’s no accident that the places where the most money is spent are places with large tracts of quality habitat.

County-specific spending estimates are generated by applying per-hunter spending estimates to the number and distribution of pheasant hunters from 2015 GF&P upland game harvest surveys.

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Online: https://gfp.sd.gov/hunting/small-game/pheasant-economics.aspx