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Pheasant hunting opens Saturday

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The small city of Madelia, in south-central Minnesota, hosts the governor's 3rd annual pheasant opener Saturday. According to the Associated Press, the DNR headquarters for pheasant research is in Madelia, and there are 8,600 acres of public hunting land within 20 miles of the town, which is 90 minutes southwest of Minneapolis.

The DNR is tracking loss of habitat for waterfowl, which it estimates is 200,000 acres between 2008 and 2012

More than 80,000 people are expected to hunt pheasants this year across Minnesota.

The DNR has more information about pheasant hunting, including tips. U.S. Fish and Wildlife areas remain closed because of the government shutdown.

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Pheasant counts are up this year compared to 2011, providing good conditions for Minnesota hunters. Hunting season begins October 15.