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Iowa's 2012 hunting, fishing and camping numbers are inThursday, January 17, 2013

Category:Outdoor and Recreation

The Department of Natural Resources recently released data describing Iowa's hunting , fishing and camping in 2012.

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The department reported selling 164,000 deer hunting licenses in 2012, with the most popular license being the first shotgun season. Bow license was the next popular by a slim margin. Iowa recently ended its pheasant hunting season and although numbers were down this year, 75 percent of out of state hunters come to Iowa for pheasant hunting season.

"When I started in 2004 the numbers were pretty high, we would got out opening week and check between 100 to 150 hunters on opening day, and most all of those hunters would have their limit of 3 birds," Iowa Conservation Officer Jeff Harrison, told Davenport NBC affiliate KWQC."A lot of them would come, it's a family tradition, they would get hotels, you would have take vacations based on coming back to do the pheasant opener."

As for fishing, the DNR reported selling 328,000 fishing licenses in 2012, only 10,000 of those were not for an annual license.

The DNR​ said that 2012 saw the largest increase in guest stays at state campgrounds, with campers spending 709,000 days at state campgrounds last year.