spacerspacerIllinois Department of Natural Resources  

June 3, 2010

Illinois Department of Natural Resources Newsbits

Highlighting IDNR programs and events for the month of June

Get Outdoors:  June is “Leave No Child Inside Month” in Illinois and the IDNR encourages youth and families to get outdoors.  Illinois state parks and educational programs offer exciting and unique opportunities that will connect people with nature and the outdoors.  For information on youth and family activities, check this link on the IDNR web site:

Free Fishing Days:  The 2010 Illinois Free Fishing Days are scheduled for June 11-14.
During Illinois Free Fishing Days, anyone may fish without the need to have a sport fishing license, inland trout stamp or salmon stamp.

Two Rivers Family Fishing Fair:  Families are invited to the 19th annual Two Rivers Family Fishing Fair on Sat., June 12 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at Pere Marquette State Park in Grafton.  Fishing poles, bait and supplies are provided during the free event, with information stations, educational activities, music and entertainment.  The event is hosted by the IDNR and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  For more information, phone 618/786-3323, ext. 1.

Non-Resident Archery Deer Permits:  The online lottery application period is now open for Non-Resident Illinois Archery Combination Deer permits for the 2010-11 deer season.  The deadline to apply is June 30.  Non-resident hunters can apply for the lottery through DNR Direct Online License Sales (click on the link on the IDNR home page at or by phone at 1-888-6PERMIT (1-888-673-7648). Non-residents may apply for one combination archery permit per season.  The cost of a Non-Resident Archery Combination Deer permit (one either-sex/one antlerless) is $411.  The quota is 25,000 for non-resident combination tags.  Antlerless-only archery permits will be available throughout the season over the counter at local license agents, by phone or through DNR Direct Online License Sales for $25.50 each (if ordering by phone or online, the permit will be mailed within 7 to 10 business days).  The upcoming Illinois archery deer season is Oct. 1, 2010--Jan. 16, 2011 (except closed in firearm deer counties on Nov. 19-21 and Dec. 2-5).  For more information on Illinois deer hunting, check the IDNR web site at this link:

Fall Turkey Permits:  Permit applications are now being accepted for the 2010 Illinois Fall Shotgun Wild Turkey season.  The season dates are Oct. 23-31.  The application deadline for the first lottery drawing (Illinois residents only) is July 6.  Hunters may apply online through DNR Direct at (click on the Online Licenses button).  For more information on the fall wild turkey season, go to the web site at

Wolf Creek State Park Archery Deer Hunting Change:  The IDNR has made a change in the archery deer hunting program beginning this fall at Wolf Creek State Park.  Hunters will no longer be required to apply for a week-long reservation as in previous years.  Instead, hunters will be required to sign up for a free site hunting card prior to hunting.  The sign-in sheet will be located at the Eagle Creek State Recreation Area office (directly west of Wolf Creek State Park across the Findlay Bridge).  Hunters should be careful to sign the correct sheet for Wolf Creek State Park as there will also be a sign-in sheet for Eagle Creek State Recreation Area hunting.  This change will give hunters the opportunity to hunt without the pre-planning that was necessary with the previous system.  Season dates will coincide with the statewide archery deer season and will be closed during the firearm deer season.  All hunters are required to have a current hunting license, habitat stamp and IDNR-issued archery deer permit.  Archery hunters at Wolf Creek State Park will be required to harvest a doe before harvesting an antlered deer (4 points or better).  This requirement is intended to help manage the large deer population on and near Wolf Creek State Park.  For more information on deer hunting opportunities and site regulations at Wolf Creek State Park, contact Eagle Creek State Recreation Area at 217/756-8260 or IDNR Biologist Doug Brown at 217/345-2420.

Spring Lake Advisory:  As of June 1 at the Spring Lake Fish and Wildlife Area in Tazewell County, only trolling motors are allowed for use from the South Spring Lake Spillway to the south end of South Spring Lake.  This regulation is necessary to control shoreline erosion which is impacting the integrity of the South Lake levee and road surface, as well as creating a safety hazard for site visitors.

Science Series:  The Illinois State Museum’s monthly science series program in June is “Oneota and Mississippian Interactions: An Update from the Morton Village Site, Fulton County, Illinois,” on Wed., June 9 at 7 p.m. at the ISM Research and Collections Center, Springfield.  Presented by Dr. Jodie O'Gorman, Michigan State University, the program will focus on archaeological research conducted by MSU and the Dickson Mounds Museum of prehistoric Native Americans in the central Illinois River Valley.  The program is free and open to the public.  For more information, phone 217/782-0061.  The ISM Research and Collections Center is located at 1011 East Ash in Springfield. 

Super Saturday:  The June 12 Super Saturday at the Illinois State Museum in Springfield will be “Outside at the Museum” from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.  In celebration of “Leave No Child Inside Month,” the event will feature outside activities.  Children will use chalk to create a massive work of art on the museum’s sidewalk, search for wildlife on the museum’s grounds and learn an easy way to tell which way the wind blows.  Children can also have their picture drawn by a local caricature artist.  The program is designed especially for children 4-8 years old and is free and open to the public. The museum is located at 502 S. Spring St. (the corner of Spring and Edwards Streets) in Springfield.  For more information, phone 217/782-6044.

NRAB Meeting:  The IDNR Natural Resources Advisory Board will meet on Tues., June 29 at 1 p.m. at the IDNR Headquarters, One Natural Resources Way, Springfield.  The meeting is open to the public.  For more information, phone 217/785-0075.

Wingshooting Clinics:  The IDNR and participating partners will sponsor wingshooting clinics at sites throughout Illinois to help improve the shooting skills of participants. Youth/Women's clinics are designed to teach participants basic firearm and hunter safety and the fundamentals of wingshooting.  Hunter clinics are designed to enhance the wingshooting skills of hunters and provide sound wingshooting practice techniques.  The clinics are conducted on weekends throughout the spring, summer and early fall.  For a complete schedule, check the IDNR web site at  Upcoming clinics include:

  1. June 5-6 – Hunter Clinic – Des Plaines Conservation Area, Wilmington (217/785-8129)
  2. June 12-13 – Hunter Clinic – Briar Knoll Hunting and Fishing Club, Amboy (815/857-2320)
  3. June 12 – Youth/Women Clinic – Jim Edgar Panther Creek SFWA, Chandlerville (217/452-7741)
  4. June 26-27 – Youth/Women Clinic – St. Charles Sportsmen’s Club, Elburn (630/363-6180)
  5. August 21-22 – Youth/Women Clinic – Shabbona Lake State Park, DeKalb Co. (815/758-2773)
  6. August 21-22 – Youth/Women Clinic – Raycraft Farm, Piatt Co. (217/935-6860)
  7. August 28-29 – Hunter Clinic – Raycraft Farm, Piatt Co. (217/935-6860)
  8. September 11-12 – Youth/Women Clinic – Stephen A. Forbes State Park, Kinmundy (618/547-3381)
  9. September 11-12 – Youth/Women Clinic – Johnson-Sauk Trail State Park, Kewanee (309/853-5589)
  10. September 18-19 – Hunter Clinic – Des Plaines Conservation Area, Wilmington (815/785-8129)
  11. September 25-26 – Youth/Women Clinic – South Fork Dirt Riders Park, Kincaid (217/496-3113)
  12. September 26 – Youth Clinic – Decatur Gun Club, Decatur (217/521-9469)

OutdoorIllinois:  Illinois’ first nesting colony of white pelicans is celebrated on the cover and in a feature story in the June 2010 issue of OutdoorIllinois magazine, the official publication of the IDNR.  Also in the issue are a series of stories supporting June as “Leave No Child Inside Month”: identifying water critters during a stream hike, the Fishin’ Buddies, Inc. Youth Conservation Conference, inner-city programs at Eden Place Nature Center and celebration of Illinois’ agricultural heritage through the Illinois State Museum’s Audio-Video Barn Web site (  Readers anxious for the summer picnic and camping season will savor four delectable, award-wining Dutch oven recipes.  For a summary of feature magazine articles, listen in on monthly podcasts at  OutdoorIllinois is a great tool for learning about Illinois' natural, cultural and recreational resources and a bargain at only $15 for a one-year, 12-issue magazine subscription that includes an information-packed annual calendar in the December issue.  Visit or call 1-800-720-3249 to subscribe.  VISA and MasterCard are accepted.  For information on advertising in OutdoorIllinois, call 217/785-8610 or e-mail

Give Us Your Best Shot:  The 11th annual OutdoorIllinois photo contest is now open for entries.  All winning images will be published in the February 2011 issue of OutdoorIllinois - the sixth annual photographic issue.  The photo contest is open to all Illinois residents, and entries are due by 5 p.m. August 6.  Among the items the “Best of Show” winner will receive are a weekday, one-night lodging and breakfast for two package for Rend Lake Resort and Lodge and two tickets to the 2011 Illinois Outdoor Hall of Fame banquet, where the recipient will be honored and the winning photograph displayed.  First-, second- and third-place winners will receive three-year, two-year and one-year subscriptions, respectively, to OutdoorIllinois and the opportunity to have their winning photos published in the February 2011 issue.  Contest guidelines are also available at or call 217/785-0975.

Boating Infrastructure:  Local governments, privately-owned marinas and boatyards have until August 2 to apply for grants available to provide temporary docking facilities for large boats.  Funds for the program come from federal excise taxes on fishing equipment and motorboat fuels through the Sport Fishing and Boating Safety Program, and can provide up to 75 percent of an approved project’s cost.  The program is intended to enhance boating for transient, non-trailerable recreational boats - those 26 feet long or longer.  The applicant must provide the remaining 25 percent of a project’s cost.  Eligible facilities must accommodate boats of 26 feet or longer, must be used by transient boaters who do not stay more than 10 consecutive days and must be open to the public.  Projects could include boat slips, mooring buoys, navigational aids, safe harbors and initial dredging to provide transient boats with safe channel depths.  All proposals must be submitted to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service through the IDNR Federal Aid/Special Funds Section of the Office of Resource Conservation.  For additional information, call 217/782-2602.

Great Resources for Teachers:  Several new Illinois-specific resources for educators will be available during June from the IDNR Education Section.  Look for the Illinois Ferns and Illinois Fishes, Volume I posters; Illinois’ Natural Resources Trading Cards Set #5 and poster; and these newly revised CD-ROMs: Illinois Biodiversity; Biodiversity of Illinois, Volume I: Aquatic Habitats; Biodiversity of Illinois, Volume II: Woodland Habitats; and Biodiversity of Illinois, Volume III: Prairie and Edge Habitats.  If you are a school teacher and aren’t already a member, join the list server and be among the first educators to be notified of helpful materials from the IDNR.  Follow the instructions at