Hunters are getting ready for the start of pheasant and quail season this Saturday.. However, the ongoing drought has lowered the bird count this year.
"It's going to be another tough year," said Regional Wildlife Supervisor Craig Curtis. "It's going to be challenging."
The Kansas pheasant and quail harvests typically rank among the top two or three in the country according to the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism.
The department says "two years of drought and extreme summertime temperatures have reduced pheasant and quail numbers, especially in the southwest portion of the state."
Hunters spend more than $400 million each year in Kansas. Hunting trip-related expenses alone total nearly $150 million annually.
Stores like Cabela's are already cashing in on the season.
"We see the traffic really pick up at this time," said Cabela's Senior Operations Manager David Wade. "Our gun sales increase, our ammunition sales increase our clothing sales increase. Customers are coming in wanting the new product, the best of the best."
Despite the low game bird populations, hunters say they will still hit the fields this weekend.
"It's just fun to get out and walk and see the country," said Kansas Hunter Larry Reber. "Hopefully there are going to be some birds."