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October 19, 2012 06:10 AM

Parker Lodge Ready For Pheasant Hunting Season

The Sioux Falls Regional Airport has already seen more camouflage and neon orange this week, as hunters fly in for the pheasant season opener on Saturday.

While the big weekend does wonders for many parts of our economy, there's also a lot of preparation that comes along with it.

It's been a tough year for weather for almost everyone in South Dakota. And while pheasant hunting season doesn't officially kick off until Saturday, some lodges have seen the effects of the drought on the birds.

"Earlier this spring, we saw a lot of young chicks and when the drought got here, when it got really hot we found out they were having a hard time finding water,"  BBB Lodge Head Guide Doug VonEye said.

So BBB Hunting Lodge in Parker took matters into its own hands and it paid off.

"I would say our overall population is up a good 25 percent over last year. I mean our habitat is here with the open winter, which is great for the nesting.  So it was...we're up quite a bit," VonEye said.

And now with the hunting season right around the corner, the BBB Hunting Lodge is getting ready for its guests.

"For the first two weeks we're booked up.  After that, it kind of slows down a little bit but it always does; it has in the past.  But we still have room, if you want to come in for a quick hunt," VonEye said.

But the biggest increase for this lodge has been who they're seeing coming through its doors.

"We have seen a very big increase to the father and sons coming out. We have, right now, I'd have to say maybe 10 groups of fathers and sons and the sons range from 12 years old to 46," VonEye said.

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