Illinois DNR Newsbits - August 2016

Chris Young
Illinois DNR Newsbits - August 2016
Firearm Deer Permits:  Permit applications will be accepted until Aug. 19 for the third lottery drawing for 2016 Illinois firearm and muzzleloader deer permits.  For details, check the IDNR website at 

Resident Archery Deer Permits:  Resident combination and antlerless-only archery deer permits are available over-the-counter (OTC) from DNR Direct license and permit vendors. Find a vendor link here:

Non-Resident Archery Deer Permits:  Illinois Non-Resident Archery Deer combination permits are available over-the-counter (OTC) from DNR Direct license and permit vendors, by phone at 1-888-673-7648 (1-888-6PERMIT), or online through Aug. 31.  Permits will be available OTC only beginning Sept. 1 through the end of season.  The Illinois Archery Deer Season is Oct. 1, 2016 through Jan. 15, 2017.
Fall Wild Turkey Shotgun Season:  Hunters may apply through Aug. 22 for the second lottery for 2016 Illinois Fall Wild Turkey Shotgun Season permits. Season dates are Oct. 22-30, 2016.  Apply online:

Grand American:  The Amateur Trapshooting Association Grand American World Trapshooting Championships are scheduled for Aug. 3-13 at the World Shooting and Recreational Complex in Sparta, IL. Check the ATA website for details at

Oil and Gas Board Meeting:  The Illinois Oil and Gas Advisory Board will meet on Wed., Aug. 10 at 10:30 a.m. at the Illinois Oil and Gas Association building, 824 E. IL Highway 15, Mt. Vernon, IL.  The meeting is open to the public.  For more information, phone 217-782-3718.

Conservation World:  Make plans to attend the 2016 Illinois State Fair in Springfield, and to spend some time at Conservation World.  A 30-acre park adjacent to the IDNR headquarters, Conservation World features family activities including fishing instruction, archery ranges, and expert information on habitat enhancement, state parks, wildlife, fish, and forestry.  Conservation World is open daily from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. during the state fair, Aug. 12-21. 

Online Dove Permits:  Online applications are being accepted for Illinois Free Dove Hunting Permits.  Hunters may apply on a first-come, first-served basis through Aug. 25 for any permits that remain.  For more information on dove hunting permit areas and free dove permits, check the IDNR website at

Upland Game Permits:  Hunters may apply through Aug. 31 for the Illinois 2016 Free Upland Game Hunt Permit program.  Applications must be made online, and successful applicants will receive a confirmation by mail.  The online application information is available at this link:

Becoming an Outdoors Woman:  A few spots are still available for the “Becoming an Outdoors Woman” (BOW) workshop at the Touch of Nature Environmental Center/Giant City State Park on Sept. 16-18. The workshop fee is $230, which includes meals, lodging, class instruction, use of class equipment/supplies, transportation during the workshop, and lots of fun. Participants must be 18 years of age or older.  Log onto the IDNR website at this link for more information and registration materials:

Hike App:  Visitors to Giant City, Illinois Beach, Pere Marquette, and Starved Rock State Parks can now take a guided hike on the parks’ most popular trails by downloading a new smartphone app. Download the Prairie State Hike App for 99 cents from iTunes or Google Play. Features of the app include a map, points of interest, audio for each stop, photographs and video. Hikes will be continually updated and new hikes added in the coming months will be available at no additional charge. The app was developed by the Prairie State Conservation Coalition, a non-profit organization created to assist conservation land trusts, land owners, and communities in their efforts to protect land and water resources in Illinois. Hikes from other conservation organizations statewide also are available through the app. To find state park trails, open the app and choose Illinois Department of Natural Resources from among the conservation organizations listed.

Wingshooting Clinics:  Hunters and novice shooters can get expert instruction at IDNR Wingshooting Clinics at IDNR sites, cooperating gun clubs, and hunting preserves.  Most clinics are conducted on weekends. Wingshooting Clinics for youth (age 10-15) and women provide instruction on safely firing a shotgun at a moving target with reasonable reliability.  Hunter wingshooting clinics are hands-on, and include extensive live fire at a variety of clay target presentations on sporting clays courses specifically designed for teaching typical hunting situations. For the wingshooting clinic schedule and more information, check the IDNR website:

Youth/Women Clinic in Fisher:  Sign up today for the annual Youth/Women Wingshooting Clinic at Capel Farm near Fisher, IL on Sat., Aug. 27 and Sun., Aug. 28, co-sponsored by the IDNR, Illinois Conservation Foundation, Friends of the NRA, Champaign County Pheasants Forever, and Piatt County Pheasants Forever. Youth ages 10 and up and women of all ages are invited.  The clinic sessions are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.  Registration is at 10:30 a.m. both days.  The professional wingshooting teachers are certified by the National Sporting Clays Association.  There is no charge, and all supplies including shotguns and ammunition are provided, including lunch.  Co-sponsor members are supplying the manpower and the funding for both sessions.  Fill out the registration form at this link:

Johnson-Sauk Trail Youth/Women Clinic:  IDNR and the Rock Island/Henry County Pheasants Forever Chapter 357 are sponsoring a Wingshooting Clinic for beginning shotgun shooters at Johnson-Sauk Trail State Recreation Area near Kewanee, IL on Sat., Sept. 10. The clinic is for boys and girls ages 10-15, and for women of all ages.  Registration begins at 10 a.m.  Professional IDNR and National Sporting Clays Association certified instructors will present the clinic.  There is a $10.00 reservation fee per student.  All supplies including shotguns, ammunition and lunch are provided for students. Part one of the clinic consists of classroom instruction on firearm safety, nomenclature and hunter safety. Part two of the clinic is hands on, and includes a variety of extensive live fire at clay targets. To make a reservation, contact Paul Mangelsdorf, Pheasants Forever Youth Co-Chairman at, PFYRIHC@GMAIL.COM or call 309-716-0849 and leave a message.  Reserve early as space is limited to 24 students.   

Illinois State Parks Guide:  The 2016-17 Illinois State Parks guide is available in print and online.  The booklet is a useful guide to an eventful day in a state park picnic area, a weekend at a state park lodge or campground, a hike in a state forest, a ride on a state trail, or hunting and fishing trips to a state fish and wildlife area.  The Illinois State Parks guide is posted on the IDNR website in PDF format at this link:
Copies of the state parks guide can be ordered through the IDNR online publications page:

Camping Reservations:  Make campsite and shelter reservations for many IDNR sites online through the Reserve America website at using a credit card.

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