IDNR Newsbits - November 2014

Chris Young
IDNR Newsbits - November 2014
Upland Hunting: For information on prospects for the 2014-15 pheasant, quail and rabbit seasons in Illinois, check the IDNR web site for the annual hunting prospects reports prepared by the IDNR Division of Wildlife Resources.  The links to the reports are available through the IDNR web site at:

Remaining Firearm Deer Permits:  Remaining Illinois firearm and muzzleloader deer permits are available over-the-counter (OTC) from DNR Direct license and permit vendors through Dec. 7, or until quotas are exhausted.  Find a vendor near you at this link:

Late-Winter and CWD Deer Special Hunt Area Applications:  Hunters may apply online through Nov. 24 for site-specific permits for designated IDNR Special Hunt Areas for the Late-Winter and CWD Deer Hunts.  The online application system will be available through the IDNR website at A list of Special Hunt Areas:
CWD Special Hunt Area Sites
Apple River Canyon State Park (SP) � Thompson/Salem Units SP in Jo Daviess County
Castle Rock SP in Ogle Co.
Goose Lake Prairie State Natural Area (SNA)/Heidecke State Fish and Wildlife Area/Morris Wetland in Grundy Co. � Check-in by 5 a.m. *
Hanover Bluff SNA in Jo Daviess Co.
Lowden-Miller State Forest in Ogle Co.
Kishwaukee River SNA in DeKalb Co.
Rall Woods (Falling Down Prairie) SNA in Jo Daviess Co.
Starved Rock SP � includes Starved Rock SP, Mathiessen SP, Margery C. Carlson SNA,
Mitchell�s Grove SNA and Sandy Ford SNA in LaSalle Co.
Tapley Woods SNA in Jo Daviess Co.
Wards Grove Nature Preserve in Jo Daviess Co.
White Pines SP in Ogle Co. - Check-in by 5 a.m. *
Winston Tunnel SNA in Jo Daviess Co.
Late-Winter Special Hunt Area Sites
Franklin Creek SNA in Lee Co. � Check-in by 5 a.m.*
Jubilee College SP (January 17-19 Only) in Peoria Co.
Sahara Woods in Saline Co.
Sam Dale Lake in Wayne Co.
* Permit hunters at these designated sites must sign in at the site check station by 5 a.m.; standby hunting available afterward, as space allows.
Permits for the sites listed above are limited and will only be available through the online application through Nov. 24 (paper applications are not available).  Hunters may submit only one online Special Hunt Area application.  Unfilled 2014 site-specific firearm, muzzleloader or youth permits for these sites are not valid during the Late-Winter Firearm and CWD Deer season (except at sites where standby hunting is available).  Late-Winter and CWD Deer season dates are January 1-4, 2015 and Jan. 16-18, 2015. For a Late-Winter and CWD deer hunting information sheet, with details on sites open to deer hunting with county permits during Late-Winter and CWD seasons, check the IDNR website at this link:

Archery Deer and Fall Turkey Permits:  Illinois Archery Deer and Illinois Archery Fall Turkey seasons are open through Jan. 18, 2015.  Permits are available over-the-counter at DNR Direct license and permit vendors. Find a vendor near you at this link:

Archery, Firearm, Muzzleloader, and Late-Winter/CWD Seasons CWD Sampling: Deer hunters statewide are encouraged to allow samples to be taken for chronic wasting disease (CWD) sampling from adult deer they harvest.  Check the IDNR website at this link for locations that are serving as CWD sampling stations, taking samples from entire deer or deer heads through Jan. 18, 2015:

Spring Turkey Applications:  Resident hunters may now apply for the first lottery for 2015 Illinois Spring Wild Turkey Season permits online. Go to the IDNR website for more information at this link:  The application deadline for the first lottery for 2015 resident spring turkey permits is Dec. 1, 2014.  

Illinois Artisans Program:  The Illinois State Museum�s Illinois Artisans Program presents a Home Decorating Art Spree on Nov. 20-21 and a Holiday Art Spree on Dec. 10-12.  These Illinois Artisans Program events are at the James R. Thompson Center Atrium, 100 W. Randolph, Chicago. For more information, phone 312-814-5321. 

Central Illinois Youth Goose Hunt:  Youth interested in participating in the 15th annual Central Illinois Youth Goose Hunt, sponsored by the IDNR, can register now for the hunt, which is scheduled for Dec. 26-27.  To register for a drawing to participate in the hunt, youth hunters must phone in to the IDNR at 217-785-8060 by the registration deadline of Friday, Dec. 5.  The youth goose hunt will be held at private waterfowl hunting clubs in Peoria, Fulton and Knox counties.  A lottery drawing involving all youth who phone in to register will be conducted on Monday, Dec. 8, and youth hunters selected will be notified by mail.  First-time applicants will be given a priority over previous participants in the drawing. The hunt is open to youngsters ages 10-15 at the time of the hunt.  All applicants must have successfully completed a hunter safety education course, possess a valid Illinois hunting or sportsman's license, have a Harvest Information Program (HIP) registration number, and have a 20 gauge or larger shotgun. Youth hunt participants must be accompanied by a parent or guardian who must possess a valid firearm owner's identification (FOID) card. To register for the hunt or for more information, call 217-785-8060.

Online Free Site Hunting Permits:  Hunters are reminded that Free Site Hunting Permits (windshield cards) to hunt upland, forest game and waterfowl at IDNR sites are available online from the IDNR website at
Hunters are encouraged to view the link to hunter fact sheets also available at the site. For information or assistance, hunters should contact the site where they intend to hunt.

ICF 2015 Calendar:  The Illinois Conservation Foundation�s second annual Illinois wall calendar is now available. Proceeds from the sale of the beautiful 2015 ICF Wall Calendar support a variety of youth education programs in Illinois, such as outreach efforts at the Torstenson Youth Conservation Education Center, and the new Torstenson Education Station, a traveling trailer equipped with hands-on equipment that teachers and youth group leaders can use to support a number of programs. Order the calendar through the ICF website at or by phone at 217-785-2003.

Super Saturdays at ISM:  �Creatures of the Night� is the November Super Saturdays event for youth and families at the Illinois State Museum on Nov. 8 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m.  Children can learn about nocturnal animals, see specimens from the Museum's collection, play games, and make crafts. For more information, call 217-782-6044. The Museum is located at 502 S. Spring St. in Springfield.

Science Series:  The monthly science series program on Nov. 12 at the Illinois State Museum Research and Collections Center in Springfield is �Discovering Late Victorian East St. Louis� related to archaeology for the new Mississippi River Bridge project.  Hundreds of features, dating from the late-19th to the early-20th century and spanning 76 lots across four city blocks, were investigated. Thousands of artifacts were recovered. The free program is on Wed., Nov. 12 at 7 p.m. at the ISM Research and Collections Center, 1011 East Ash, Springfield.  For more information, phone 217-782-0061.

Biodiversity Blitz:  The Illinois State Museum in Springfield hosts a free, fun family event on Sat., Nov. 15 with a Biodiversity Blitz. The Blitz will focus on threatened and endangered plants and animals in Illinois, as well as species that have made a comeback from the brink of extinction or extirpation. Families will search for threatened and endangered species in the Changes exhibition, design a conservation magnet, and learn what they can do to protect Illinois species. At 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., the Illinois Raptor Center will present �Back from the Brink� -- a live raptor presentation that will highlight birds of prey. The Biodiversity Blitz is free and open to the public on Nov. 15 at the Illinois State Museum, 502 S. Spring St., Springfield.

ESPB Meeting:  The Illinois Endangered Species Protection Board will meet on Fri., Nov. 14, 2014 at 10 a.m. at the Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie, 30239 South State Route 53, Wilmington, IL 60481.  The meeting is open to the public.  For more information, phone 217-785-8687.

Youth Pheasant Hunt:  Johnson-Sauk Trail SRA in Henry County near Kewanee will host a Controlled Pheasant Hunt opportunity for youth ages 10-15 on Sat., Nov. 8.  To reserve a free Johnson-Sauk Trail Youth Pheasant Hunt Permit, go online at and follow these navigation instructions:  Click on "Upland Game" from the drop down menu under the �Hunting/Trapping� button on the toolbar, then click on "Controlled Pheasant Areas" under the �Quick Links� heading.  Check-in for Reserved Youth Permit holders will from 8:00 - 8:30 a.m. on Nov. 8 at the Red Earth Caf� Marina Building Check Station in the lower level. If the Reserved Youth Permit hunter quota is not filled, stand-by Youth Permits will be issued via a drawing at 8:30 a.m. at the check station until the daily hunter quota is full.  For more information, phone 309-853-2425.

Kaskaskia Hunt:  Kaskaskia River SFWA has hunting opportunities for hunters with disabilities, with two designated handicapped waterfowl hunting blinds at the Dry Lake Area. The hunting blinds for hunters with disabilities can be reserved by sending a postcard to the Kaskaskia River SFWA main office stating what day and which blind the hunter would like to reserve during the season.  If more than one card is received for a date, there will be an in-house drawing.  The South-Central Zone season starts on Nov. 8.  For more information, call the site office at 618-785-2555.  The office address is Kaskaskia River SFWA, 10981 Conservation Road, Baldwin IL  62217.

Collector's Day:  People with a passion for collecting will be on hand for the annual Collector�s Day event at the Illinois State Museum in Springfield on Sat., Nov. 22 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m.  Many of the finest pieces of the Museum's collections were donated by collectors. During this special event, meet local and regional collectors who will display their unique objects, from typewriters to music boxes to antique pins to cameras to radio memorabilia. No buying, selling, or appraisals will be allowed. Collector�s Day is free and open to the public. Contact the Museum by Nov. 14 for registration information at or 217-782-0061.  The Illinois State Museum is at 502 S. Spring St. in Springfield (in the State Capitol Complex).

Hunting Regulations:  For information on Illinois hunting seasons and regulations, click here for the Illinois Digest of Hunting and Trapping Regulations 2014-15:
For information on waterfowl hunting seasons and regulations in Illinois, click on the Illinois Digest of Waterfowl Hunting Regulations 2014-2015 here:

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