LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - Gun hunting season is upon us, and it appears that more people are buying hunting licenses as they look for things to do outdoors this year.
Wisconsin's gun deer season begins on Saturday and runs until November 29.
The Wisconsin DNR says that hunting license sales are up about 10% compared to this time last year.
"We're living in a new climate in terms of COVID," DNR area wildlife supervisor Scott Walter said. "But it appears that outdoor recreation, including hunting and fishing, has increased a bit in popularity."
Wildlife officials reported an increase in state park visits and saw fishing license sales spike over the summer. They say more people may be trying new hobbies that allow a safe social distance.
"Hunting is a great social distancing sport because, just by nature, you want to get as far away from everyone else as you can," La Crosse Archery owner Keith Rosenthal said. "I think that's part of the attraction that people have to get in the outdoors and go hunting right now."
Health officials are still reminding people to avoid social gatherings like deer camps this opening weekend.
Hunting licenses can be purchased safely on the DNR's website.