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Hunting & Fishing Licenses sales are up more since 2019

"Fishing" by kevin dooley is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

Virus-weary Michiganders are heading outdoors.  According to the state Department of Natural Resources, more than 545,000 hunters in Michigan had bought licenses through Nov. 11, nearly 10-percent more than at the same point in 2019. Fishing license sales are also on the rise as a means to escape from the pandemic. 

“We are down at the 6th Street dam. I’m on my lunch break actually and I’m doing a little Steelhead fishing,” explains Rob Bengel.

“Floating some center-pin bobbers down the river looking for some Steelhead and maybe some Browns or Lakes or anything.”

Bengel makes a cast into the Grand River.

“It makes you go a little stir-crazy when you’re sitting at home working all day. The entire day. The entire week for months-on-end. There’s no end in sight right now. I mean, there is a vaccine but I’m assuming it won’t be another four or five months until we can actually go back to work. So, it’s nice to get out in the sun, get a little Vitamin D and relax a little bit.”

Bengel reels in his line and casts, again.

“There’s something a little bit meditative about running water and fishing in it. The serenity of it. We’re lucky to have such a big river and such a good fishery right downtown. So, it’s nice to be able to take advantage of it.”

“I’ve been an advocate for the out-of-doors since I’ve been born. My dad raised me that way and so it’s great to see people coming around a little bit more seeing some additional interest in the sport. Our state could use the funding, that’s for sure. I mean, it’s all permit sales. So, it’s great to see.”