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Minn. DNR offers mobile purchase of hunting, fishing licenses

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Ever found yourself at the lake with a chance to do a little impromptu fishing – and realized you don't have a valid license?

Forget that time-consuming trip to a bait shop.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources on Monday announced that it is offering hunting and fishing license purchases via smartphone.

“This service is a convenience for people who need a license when they’re on the go,” DNR license program director Steve Michaels says.

The DNR did a "soft launch" of the service in late June, and the offering made through the MNDNR Mobile Sale Site is still not quite full service, but so far 1,100 mobile license sales have been made, the DNR says.

Purchasers get a text message or email that serves as a confirmation for any conservation officer who comes asking about your license.

Anyone who has never purchased a hunting or fishing license cannot buy their first one through mobile, the DNR says – those buyers have to go to a license agent or call DNR at 888-646-6367 and provide a driver’s license number so that electronic purchasing can be enabled.

Here's more general information about buying a fishing or hunting license in Minnesota, including prices.

Minnesota is first nationally in the sales of fishing licenses per capita, the DNR says. The state has 158 fish species and 5,493 fishable lakes, the DNR says. Here's more fast facts about angling in the state.

Fishing license fees went up in price this year, which touched off debate about how to spend the new revenue, the Pioneer Press reported. Chilly weather early in the season cooled license sales, MPR reported.

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