Controlled Pheasant Hunting Program Permits
- Hunters must use one of the 2020 Controlled Pheasant Hunting Permit Internet Applications to reserve permits for the controlled pheasant hunting season for IDNR operated areas. Applications are available here.
The online application requires the hunter's IDNR customer number, hunting area name, hunt date(s) and number of partners. Additionally, the hunter's telephone number is required and an e-mail address if available is requested. When providing an e-mail address, please ensure that the e-mail address is accurate.
- Each hunter is allowed to make a permit reservation for himself/herself and up to three hunting partners except for the
Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt.
- Hunters cannot have two permits for the same day at IDNR operated areas.
Special Note: The Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt is a special one day hunt during the controlled pheasant hunting season for young hunters ages ten through seventeen (see
Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt). Young hunters may apply for only one area and receive only one permit for an area participating in the Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt. Young hunters that have applied for the Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt may also apply for another hunt date during the controlled pheasant hunting season in one of the first two lottery periods.
Lotteries and First-Come First-Served Permits
- A random drawing means all applications from one lottery period are randomly processed before applications from the next lottery period are randomly processed. Eligible hunters should enter the lotteries at a convenient time during the lottery period. There is no advantage to entering a lottery early or late in the lottery period. Drawings for a lottery period are typically completed on Monday following the close of a lottery period.
- Hunters can improve their probability of success in any lottery for which they are eligible by providing the maximum number of date choices allowed on the on-line application. Hunters providing the maximum number of date choices allowed have a greater probability of receiving a permit reservation than hunters providing fewer than the maximum number of date choices.
- Each applicant age eighteen and over may apply for only one area and receive only one permit during the first two lottery periods. Applicants that are successful in the first lottery are not eligible to apply in the second lottery.
Special Note: If more than one application for a controlled pheasant permit is received for the same hunter during the first two lottery periods, all applications will be rejected and permits revoked. If more than one application for a controlled pheasant permit is received for the same hunter during the third lottery period, all applications received for the third lottery will be rejected and permits revoked.
First Lottery Period - Applications from Illinois resident hunters only will be accepted beginning Monday, Aug. 5th at 8:30 a.m. through Monday, Aug. 12th at 1:00 p.m. CDT for inclusion in the first random drawing.
Second Lottery Period - Illinois resident hunters that did not apply or who were unsuccessful in the first lottery and nonresident hunters can apply from Monday, Aug. 12th at 3:00 p.m. through Monday, Aug. 19th at 1:00 p.m. CDT for inclusion in the second random drawing.
Third Lottery Period - A third lottery beginning Monday Aug. 19th at 3:00 p.m. through Monday, Aug. 26th at 1:00 p.m. CDT is available to resident and nonresident hunters who want a second permit.
First-Come First-Served Permits - Hunters can acquire additional permits on a first-come first-served basis beginning at 8:00 a.m. CDT, Saturday, Aug. 31st. Permits will remain available until reserved permit quotas are depleted or until 24 hours (48 hours for Disabled Hunter Permits) prior to any hunt date whichever occurs first.
Fees, Credits and Refunds
- Controlled Pheasant Hunting Permits are $30 per resident hunter per hunt date and $35 per nonresident hunter per hunt date. There are no fees for the Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt.
- Hunters are required to pay for reserved permits in advance over a secure internet system using one of the following credit cards: American Express, Discover, MasterCard, or Visa. Credit cards will be billed when hunters submit an application.
- A transaction fee of $1.00 will be assessed for applications for a single hunter. A 2.25% transaction fee will be assessed for applications with multiple hunters. Transaction fees do not apply to applications submitted for the Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt.
- The credit card account used on the application will be credited for the reserved permit fee(s) and transaction fee for applicants unsuccessful in a drawing.
Note: Once a reserved permit has been issued refunds are not available nor can hunting partners be added.
Disabled Hunter Permits
- Disabled hunters with Standing Vehicle Permits may apply for Controlled Pheasant Hunting Permits for Des Plaines, Eldon Hazlet, and Moraine View where special vehicles are available to assist with the hunt. Disabled hunters may bring one hunting partner. The hunting partner must be ambulatory. The disabled permit holder must be present to hunt for the partner to hunt. Permits will be available until permit quotas are depleted or until 48 hours prior to any hunt date whichever occurs first.
- Disabled hunters, as defined by law (520 ILCS 5/2.33), may apply to the IDNR's Office of Law Enforcement (217) 782-6431 for a Standing Vehicle Permit. Disabled Hunters with Standing Vehicle Permits need to review Additional Disabled Hunter Regulations before hunting.
Each IDNR operated controlled pheasant hunting area has a portion of the hunter quota allocated to standby hunters. Standby hunters acquire permits at the area's hunter check station on the hunt date. Standby permit information for the Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt is available at
Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt.
Note: Hunters are encouraged to use the Controlled Pheasant Hunting Reserved Permit System rather than Standby Permits. Hunters with Reserved Permits are assured of the opportunity to hunt on their hunt date while there is no assurance that standby hunters will be able to acquire Standby Permits. In addition, the number of pheasants released for each hunting day is highly accurate when most hunters use reserved permits. Because standby hunter numbers can fluctuate significantly, the number of pheasants released for each hunting day can be less accurate when the majority of hunters afield use Standby Permits.
Checking the Status of Permits
- Hunters can determine if they were successful in a lottery by using the "Check the Status of Your Application" feature with their customer number on the Controlled Pheasant Hunting Website.
- The "Check the Status of Your Application" feature can also be used to determine the status of the application when first-come first-served permit reservations become available.
- Hunters successful in a lottery or successfully obtaining a first-come first-served permit reservation are encouraged to print the web page resulting from the "Check the Status of Your Application" feature. This page will serve as the hunting permit.
- Reserved Controlled Pheasant Hunting Permits (CPHP's) may be transferred beginning at 8:00 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 31st CDT until 24 hours before the hunt date listed on the permit.
- A Reserved CPHP can be transferred up to three times.
- CPHP's cannot be transferred to a hunt date where the permit holder already has another permit.
- Resident permit holders cannot transfer a permit to a nonresident hunter.
- At the Jim Edgar Panther Creek SF&WA, Reserved CPHP's may only be transferred to another available hunt date at the original site or to an available hunt date at another controlled pheasant hunting site. Reserved CPHP's cannot be transferred from the original permit holder to another hunter at this site.
- At all other controlled pheasant hunting sites Reserved CPHP's may be transferred from the original permit holder to another hunter, to another available hunt date at the original site or to an available hunt date at another controlled pheasant hunting site.
- Reserved youth opportunity permits may be transferred to another site but can only be transferred to another youth opportunity hunt date.
- Disabled Hunter Permits and IL Youth Pheasant Hunt Permits cannot be transferred.
Hunt Date Check-in Procedures
- Permit holders and partners must have identification with a picture when checking-in on the hunt date. Permit holders under 16 must have some form of identification (e.g., hunting license, hunter safety card, school ID, library card) when checking-in on the hunt date.
- Hunters with a confirmed permit reservation must be present to hunt on the hunt date for the partners to hunt.
How to Fix Your Controlled Pheasant Hunting On-Line Application
1. During the on-line application process applicants are provided an opportunity to recheck all of the information on the application. Please use this opportunity to recheck the accuracy of your information before submitting the application. Corrections to the on-line application are most easily made during the recheck opportunity.
2. If the on-line application has been submitted with errors, if you mistakenly apply twice or if you need to cancel an application, contact us by e-mail at:
during the lottery period in which the application was entered. Your e-mail must include your customer number, your name and your birth date. We are unable to assist with an application after the close of the lottery period in which the application was entered.
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- If there are questions, please e-mail us:
DNR.Pheasant@illinois.gov Department of Natural Resources information is available to the hearing impaired by calling IDNR's TTY. (217) 782-9175