Hunting apps are becoming more popular in the Ozarks

Published: Nov. 17, 2019 at 7:52 PM CST
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For hunters in years past, smart phones offered a way to pass time while waiting in the deer stand. But nowadays, hunters use their phones for a variety of reasons.

Thousands of hunters hit the woods this weekend for the opening of rifle season.

"Certain times it sounds like a war zone, you know. Just shots all over the place," Jeff Donohue said.

Just three years ago, Missouri Department of Conservation employees at the West Plains office say they were seeing the majority of hunters still carrying paper permits.

"But now in these past couple of years, it's been a big increase in our mobile app telecheck checking," Megan Buchanan with the Missouri Department of Conservation told KY3.

MDC's Mo Hunting app allows hunters to keep digital records on numerous things.

"They can see their prior permits, they can purchase new permits, check the status of their permits, notch it and telecheck it. It's a one-stop-shop," Buchanan added.

Even in remote areas with limited cell service, hunters can still view and notch permits.

"Like this morning, I helped my dad telecheck his, Jeremy Capps explained. His phone wasn't working. I pulled my phone up, was able to punch his stuff in and there were his permits. It's a really easy, convenient and less stuff to keep up."

Apps like MO Hunting are free.

Other apps are free but offer other extra features for a price.

"Other help them with their GPS locations and their digital property lines," Buchanan exclaimed.

Shane Reynolds doesn't use an app to store hunting permits but rather for safety.

"I use Google Earth just to get the lay of the land and just where the right of ways are on your fields and then also not getting lost and getting back to the truck," Reynolds said.

But for some hunters, it's still about bonding with family and taking in nature.

"Like when it comes to youth time, I get to bond with my children. I have three boys, Donohue told KY3. And then when it comes to my season, I get to bond with nature myself."