SPRINGFIELD – Young hunters between the ages of 10 and 17 can apply now for youth wingshooting clinics and youth pheasant hunts scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 12 at Eldon Hazlet State Recreation Area in Clinton County, Johnson-Sauk Trail State Recreation Area in Henry County, and Mackinaw River State Fish and Wildlife Area in Tazewell County.
Registrants will participate in a wingshooting clinic during the morning. Wingshooting instrutors certified by the National Sporting Clays Association and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) will lead the clinic. Young hunters will practice safe shotgun handling and operation while advancing their wingshooting skills. The youth pheasant hunt will take place during the afternoon. Participants must have successfully completed an approved hunter safety course and have a valid hunting license.
Permits are available through IDNR's controlled pheasant hunting online reservation system. Applicants should review the Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt Information and the Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt Regulations prior to applying at https://dnr2.illinois.gov/controlledhunt/.
Once the information has been reviewed, hunters may apply for their preferred area at https://dnr2.illinois.gov/PheasantHunt/ApplyYFCFS.aspx. An information packet will be mailed following successful application for a permit.
Co-sponsors assist the IDNR and Eldon Hazlet, Johnson-Sauk Trail, and Mackinaw River staff with wingshooting clinics and pheasant hunts, providing funding for clay targets, target and field shot shells, and lunch for participants. Co-sponsor organization members also provide bird dogs, bird dog handlers, and hunting guides. At Eldon Hazlet, the co-sponsors are Quail Forever - Little Bluestem and Silver Creek chapters. Johnson-Sauk Trail co-sponsors are Pheasants Forever - Henry County, Knox County and Rock Island County chapters. And at Mackinaw River, the co-sponsor is Pheasants Forever - Illinois River Valley Chapter.
Clinic participants will be required to observe all guidance from the CDC and Illinois Department of Public Health at the time of the event regarding face coverings and social distancing.