Illinois DNR Newsbits - March 2020

Rachel Torbert
Illinois DNR Newsbits - March 2020
Spring Turkey Applications:  2020 Illinois Spring Wild Turkey Season permits still available after the lottery drawings will be sold over the counter by DNR Direct license and permit vendors beginning March 10. Go to the IDNR website for more information:

2020 Licenses Now Available:  Illinois fishing, hunting and sportsman combination licenses for 2020 are now available from DNR Direct license and permit vendors throughout Illinois, or online through the IDNR website at The new license year in Illinois begins April 1, with 2020 licenses valid through March 31, 2021.

Illinois Bobcat Harvest:  The 2019-2020 Illinois Bobcat Season ended Feb. 15, 2020 with 335 bobcat permits filled. The bobcat harvest was 306 (the same as during the 2018-2019 season) and there were an additional 29 roadkill bobcats salvaged by permit holders. There were 1,000 permits issued for the season. The percentage of bobcats taken by hunting was 45 percent and trapping accounted for 46 percent (the remainder were salvaged by permit holders). Pike County led the harvest with 22 bobcats. The IDNR appreciates the support of hunters, trappers and IDNR staff who collected jaws for bobcat research at SIU Carbondale and of cooperating landowners and trappers in central Illinois who have helped with bobcat research at Western Illinois University. The IDNR and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service fund research to continue learning about Illinois’ only feline furbearer. The recovery of this species, as well as many others, and continued research are possible because of the support of the sportsmen and sportswomen of Illinois. A table with bobcat harvest totals by county can be found at:

Civil War Saturday at Old State Capitol:  Visit the Old State Capitol in Springfield for a fun, family-friendly free program hosted by the Springfield Soldiers' Aid Society Saturday, March 7 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Volunteers in historic attire will help those attending learn about the women who worked in the building during the Civil War and experience history by making crafts that were popular during the Civil War. The Old State Capitol, a reconstruction of Illinois’ fifth statehouse, served as the seat of state government and a center of Illinois political life from 1839 to 1876. It is open daily from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.

Story Time at Lincoln Log Cabin:  Plan a visit to Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site Saturday, March 7 at 10:30 a.m. for Saturday Children’s Story Time. Featuring the reading of a historically themed children's book followed by activities and crafts, this free program helps engage youngsters ages 5-10 in American history and bring the stories to life. All youth must be accompanied by an adult. The story for March 7 is “Sugar Snow” by Laura Ingalls Wilder, illustrated by Doris Ettlinger. It tells the story of making maple syrup and maple sugar, both important foodstuffs for pioneer families. The importance of the ‘sugar bush’ and making maple syrup and sugar led to some of the earliest settlements in the central part of Illinois. Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site, part of the Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area, preserves the 19th-century home of Thomas and Sarah Bush Lincoln, father and stepmother of our 16th president. The site is eight miles south of Charleston and is open each Wednesday through Sunday for free public tours. For more information about the site and its programming call 217-345-1845 or visit 

Dana-Thomas House Specialty Tours:  Two specialty tours to provide visitors the opportunity to enjoy extra time inside the historic Dana-Thomas House State Historic Site in Springfield are planned for Saturday, March 7. “Attention to Detail,” held 10:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m., will explore details and stories of the Dana House that enrich our understanding of art and architecture and the genius of Frank Lloyd Wright. “Of Glass and Wood,” held 1:15 to 3:15 p.m., will focus on details of the amazing art glass collection and the Wright-designed furniture in the house. Call the site at 217-782-6776 to reserve your place on these tours.

Super Saturday at the Illinois State Museum:  Children and families will have the chance to learn about the history of women’s suffrage and discover how they might stand up for causes they care about today when they attend the Illinois State Museum’s “Let’s Vote!” Super Saturday, held Saturday, March 7 at the museum. The program, which runs from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., will include activities such as making a sash for a favorite cause, crafting a button to encourage action, and learning more about suffragettes from Illinois and beyond through games and trivia. There will also be a chance for all participants to vote on a current topic. Super Saturdays are sponsored by Bank of Springfield. For more information email or call 217- 782-6044.

Becoming an Outdoors Woman:  Registration is open for the IDNR ‘Becoming an Outdoors Woman’ Workshop June 12-14 at the Lorado Taft Field Campus in Oregon, Ill. Becoming an Outdoors Woman workshops are designed to provide introductory instruction and experiences in many outdoor-related activities and skills. The cost per person is $245, which includes meals, lodging, four instructional classes, use of class materials/supplies, transportation during the workshop, and more. The June workshop usually fills up fast, so don’t delay in registering. Registration materials can be found at:

Seed Packets Available:  The IDNR Mason State Nursery has developed a seed mix of Illinois native forbs and grasses that is suitable for use in developing a monarch/pollinator habitat. Tree seedlings also are available for sale. For ordering information, visit:
Music at the Museum: Panamanian/Colombian duo Calle Sur performs at the monthly Music at the Museum concert series Thursday, March 12 at 7:00 p.m. at the Illinois State Museum in Springfield. Calle Sur features a broad range of Latin musical traditions. Tickets for the March concert are available in advance at or at the door. For more information on the featured acts and a full series schedule, visit

Kids Day at Dickson Mounds:  Dickson Mounds Museum is hosting a new program, Kid’s Day: Fun and Games, Saturday, March 14 from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Attendees will enjoy an afternoon playing and learning about a variety of ancient games to 20th century games.  Participants may make their own game to take home.  This program may fulfill some scouting badge requirements. Kids Day programs are for children ages 5 years old and up with an adult.  Admission is free, and donations are appreciated. Dickson Mounds is located between Lewistown and Havana off Illinois Routes 78 and 97. The museum is open free to the public from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. every day. For more information call 309-547-3721. Also visit us on Facebook at Illinois State Museum-Dickson Mounds or online at the Dickson Mounds link on

Camping Reservations: It is time to make reservations for campsites and shelters for many Illinois state parks and other IDNR sites for 2020. Reservations can be made online through the Reserve America website at using a Visa or MasterCard.

Hunter and Boating Safety Education Courses:  Register now for Hunter Safety Education and Boating Safety Education courses from the IDNR. Spring classes are being scheduled.  Check the IDNR website for class dates and locations:

Museum After Hours:  Celebrate the opening of the Fashioning Illinois: 1820-1900 exhibition in style during the Museum After Hours event at the Illinois State Museum Friday, March 27, 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. You are encouraged to dress in garb from your favorite 60s decade (1860s or 1960s). Enjoy live music by Myers - Brant - Paoni and the New Columbine Orchestra and participate in a 1960s inspired art making activity. Tickets are $10 for ISM Society members and $15 for non-members and include one beverage and all activities. Additional beverages and food will be available for purchase. Visit for tickets or purchase at the door. All event proceeds support educational programs at the Museum. Participants must be 21 years or older. For more information, email or call 217-782-6044.

Illinois Deer Classic:  Visit with IDNR biologists, Conservation Police Officers and permit/license staff at the 2020 Illinois Deer Classic at the Peoria Civic Center, March 27-29. For more info, visit
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