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Wolf hunters join deer hunters in weekend opener

Minnesota's first managed wolf hunting season, as well as deer hunting season, begin Saturday. Minnesota has set a quota of 400 wolves, with roughly 3,000 roaming the state. Efforts by animal rights groups to halt the hunt have failed.
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A half million Minnesota hunters are heading into the woods this weekend.

In addition to the opening of firearms deer season, the state's first managed wolf hunting season also begins Saturday. Here's more information about the wolf hunt.

While Minnesota has set a quota of 400 wolves, Dan Stark, a wolf specialist with the Department of Natural Resources, told the Associated Press that he expects hunters to take about 70 wolves.

Efforts by several animal rights groups to halt the wolf hunt have failed, and activists plan to protest, KARE 11 reports.

Gov. Mark Dayton is in Winona for the 10th annual Minnesota Governor's Deer Opener.

The AP notes that the governor is a pheasant hunter, so he will not be in a deer stand this weekend. Dayton plans to participate in events geared at promoting deer hunting.

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Minnesota's 500,000 deer hunters are expected to see a fair number of deer this season after a mild winter, but the state has issued fewer permits this year in an effort to strengthen herd numbers. The season opens 30 minutes before sunrise on Saturday.