JANESVILLE, Wis. (WTVO) — Over the last two decades, gun sales have been on in the climb in the United States.

In 2020, 5 million Americans became first-time gun owners across the nation. Due to increased demand, gun shops are experiencing a shortage of ammunition.

Chris Endres, who owns CTR Firearms in Janesville, says the mines are not producing the lead fast enough to keep ammo on the shelves.

“The mines aren’t producing the lead, the brass plants aren’t producing the brass fast enough and then, of course, you have the increased demand,” Endres explained.

“They’re unhappy about the state of the way things are. They’re unhappy about the lockdowns. They’re unhappy about the tyranny. They’re unhappy about the censoring of freedom of speech. I mean right now nobody knows the direction we’re going in so they’re all preparing,” said Endres.

For Endres, the ammo shortage has caused prices to rise by almost 500%. He tells us that gun ownership spiked when the pandemic began and again closer to the presidential election.

“The gun sales that have been, since March, that have been put forward–we’ve literally doubled the amount of guns that are in the United States. So if you thought we had a lot before we now have twice that many and the people are unhappy they’re very unhappy,” Endres added.

Longtime CTR customer Tom Loterbauer says buying ammunition has become a challenge these days.

“It’s just a store by store basis, you know. Sometimes you get lucky, sometimes you don’t. I have been at four stores today and haven’t found any ammunition. So, I will try again tomorrow,” Loterbauer said.

According to FBI numbers, more than 7 million gun background checks were run in Illinois–more than any state in the nation.