Anglers and lakes
1.4 million licensed anglers.
2 million people fish.
Minnesota has 11,842 lakes, 5,400 of which are managed by DNR fisheries.
Participation and the economy
Fishing contributes $4.7 billion to the state's economy
Minnesota ranks fourth among states with the highest number of anglers. The top three states are Florida, Texas and California. Wisconsin is fifth. 1
As a percentage of population among those states, Minnesota boasts the largest number of resident anglers at 28 percent and is tied nationally with Alaska for the largest participation of resident anglers.
Anglers spend $2.8 billion on fishing each year in Minnesota. 2
Dollars directly spent on fishing in Minnesota create an additional $1.9 billion in economic activity, boosting angling's total statewide economic impact to $4.7 billion. 2
Equipment (rods, reels, line, boats, trailers, etc.) accounted for $1.2 billion of the $2.8 billion spent. Trip-related expenses accounted for $860 million. Other expenses such as bait and equipment rental accounted for $646 million. 1
Salaries, wages and business earnings directly related to fishing total $1.3 billion. 2
Fishing creates Minnesota 43,812 jobs. 2
Minnesota angling generates $350 million in federal tax revenues and $342 million in state and local tax revenues. 2
Who goes fishing?
Most resident anglers – 755,000 of them in fact – are from the seven-county metropolitan area. The remaining 388,000 resident anglers live outside the Twin Cities. 1
Men account for 69 percent of resident anglers. Woman account for 31 percent. 1
The highest percentage of participation comes in the 35-44 year old age group. Most of the remaining participants come from the 45-64 year old age group, with those 16-24 years old accounting for only 12 percent of the people who fish. 1
An estimated 40 percent of Minnesota anglers have household incomes of $50,000-$100,000. Households that make less than $50,000 annually account for 27 percent of Minnesota anglers. 1
An estimated 388,000 children ages 6-15 go fishing each year, with Twin Cities-area kids accounting for 76 percent of the total. Although close, more girls (52 percent) went fishing than boys (48 percent). Participation among age groups (6-8 years, 9-11 years and 12-15 years) remained fairly constant. 1
Significantly more time is spent fishing on lakes rather than rivers and streams. 1
The average Minnesota angler spends 20 days fishing each year, with 86 percent of resident anglers never fishing anywhere else but Minnesota. 1
Only 3 percent of Minnesota anglers try their luck on Lake Superior. 1
Most sought-after fish species (in order): walleye, bluegill, northern pike, crappie, bass. 1
Most resident anglers spend nearly half their time fishing for walleye and bluegill. 1
1 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
2 Sportfishing in America, American Sportfishing Association