Remaining Muzzleloader Deer Permits: Illinois muzzleloader-only deer permits are still available over-the-counter (OTC) from DNR Direct license and permit vendors through Dec. 9 (or until quotas are exhausted). Find a vendor near you at this link: http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/LPR/Pages/LicensePermitVendors.aspx
Find counties with permits available at this link:
Resident Archery Deer and Fall Turkey Permits: Resident combination archery deer permits, resident antlerless-only archery deer permits, and resident archery fall turkey hunting permits are still available over-the-counter from DNR Direct license and permit vendors through the end of the seasons on Jan. 20, 2013. Find a vendor near you at this link: http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/LPR/Pages/LicensePermitVendors.aspx
Non-Resident Deer and Turkey Permits: The remaining non-resident 2012-13 Illinois combination archery deer permits, as well as non-resident antlerless-only archery deer permits and non-resident archery fall turkey permits are available over-the-counter (OTC) from DNR Direct license and permit vendors. Find a vendor near you at this link:
Late-Winter and CWD Deer County Permits: 2012-2013 Late-Winter Firearm Antlerless-only Deer county permits will be available over the counter (OTC) through DNR Direct license and permit vendors beginning on Tues., Dec. 11. County permits for the CWD Deer Season will also be available OTC beginning on Dec. 11. Late-Winter and CWD Deer season dates are Dec. 27-30, 2012 and Jan. 18-20, 2013.
Spring Turkey Applications: Hunters may apply for the second lottery for 2013 Illinois Spring Wild Turkey Season permits online. Go to the IDNR website for more information at this link:
The application deadline for the second lottery for spring turkey permits is Jan. 11, 2013. 1317**12
Spring Youth Turkey: Spring Youth Turkey Special Hunt Area online permit applications will be accepted online from Jan. 15, 2013-Feb. 18, 2013. For more information on 2013 spring turkey hunting:
Spring Youth Turkey Season County Permits will be available over-the-counter from IDNR license/permit vendors beginning on March 5, 2013.
Apply Now for Outdoors Access for Youth Turkey Hunting: The Illinois Recreational Access Program (IRAP) is now taking applications from young hunters for 2013 spring turkey hunting. Youth hunters will be assigned a hunt site in one of the 23 counties in which private property has been leased by IDNR. Most assigned hunting areas are at least 40 acres in size and all have been evaluated for turkey activity and the high possibility of a good hunting experience for the youth. Eligible youth hunters must be under the age of 16 at the time of the hunt and must have completed a hunter safety education course. Applicants can apply for two of the three turkey seasons for which IRAP has leased sites for the spring of 2013 – Youth Season, 3rd Season and 4th Season. For more information, go to www.dnr.illinois.gov/conservation/irap. Youth are encouraged not to miss out and apply early.
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 www.dnr.illinois.gov. Click on ‘Hunting/Trapping’ and then ‘Public Hunting Areas’ to print these permits. 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.
Youth Goose Hunt: The deadline is Friday, Dec. 7 for interested youth to register for the 13th annual Central Illinois Youth Goose Hunt. The hunt, sponsored by the IDNR on Dec. 26-27, will be conducted at private waterfowl hunting clubs in Peoria, Fulton and Knox counties. Youth hunters must phone in to 217-785-8060 to register for a drawing to participate in the hunt by Dec. 7. The drawing will be conducted on Dec. 10 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.
Target Hunger Now: Hunters are encouraged to donate whole deer to the Illinois Sportsmen Against Hunger program – part of the IDNR ‘Target Hunger Now!’ initiative. Participating meat processors turn the donated deer into ground venison for delivery to food banks and charities in Illinois.
For more information on ‘Target Hunger Now!’ and the Illinois Sportsmen Against Hunger program, check the IDNR website at
or by email tracy.shafer@Illinois.gov or write to Illinois Sportsmen Against Hunger, One Natural Resources Way, Springfield, IL 62702-1271.
Sportsman’s Raffle Drawing Dec. 6: It is the last chance to purchase tickets for the 2012 Illinois Conservation Foundation Sportsman’s Raffle, with proceeds supporting youth conservation education and outdoor recreation programs in Illinois. Sportsman’s Raffle tickets are $100 each and prizes, including a grand prize of up to $100,000, will be presented at a drawing in Sangamon County on Thursday, December 6, 2012. Proceeds from the raffle will support programs at the ICF Torstenson Family Youth Conservation Education Center in Pecatonica, IL. The raffle is being conducted in accordance with the Raffles Act. All business operations of the raffle take place exclusively in Sangamon County. Raffle tickets are available online at www.ilcf.org. For more information, phone the ICF at 217-785-2003.
Pere Marquette Bald Eagle Programs: Enjoy watching bald eagles on the Illinois and Mississippi rivers near Pere Marquette State Park this winter by participating one of the park’s popular Bald Eagle Days tours. The site interpreter at Pere Marquette presents informative programs about bald eagles on select dates through early March. All programs begin at the Pere Marquette Visitor Center at 8:30 a.m. Reservations are required and may be made by calling 618/786-3323. Programs are on select dates from Dec. 21 through early March. To check the schedule of program dates, go to the Pere Marquette State Park web page and click on “Bald Eagle Days” at this link:
Super Saturdays: The Illinois State Museum’s ‘Super Saturdays” event on Sat., Dec. 8 features Story Time Art. Children are invited to explore the imagery, mediums, and techniques of winter-themed picture books. Children will create a pop-up book, make a found-object snowman collage, design a story character-inspired postage stamp, and vote on their favorite seasonal classic. In addition, there will be stories read aloud, games, and other activities. The free event is 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Illinois State Museum in the State Capitol Complex in Springfield. For more information, phone 217-782-6044 or check the Museum website at www.museum.state.il.us/events
ISM Science Series: The Illinois State Museum’s Science Series program on Dec. 12 at 7 p.m. is ‘Maya 2012.’ The location of the event will be the Thorne Deuel Auditorium at the Illinois State Museum at 502 S. Spring St. in Springfield. The program will be presented by Dr. Ronald K. Faulseit of Tulane University, a Visiting Scholar in the Center for Archaeological Investigations at SIU Carbondale. The end of the Mayan “Great Cycle” (December 21, 2012) is fast approaching, and with it there are many predictions of disaster and/or transformation. This presentation will consider some of these proposed scenarios and discuss what the Maya themselves wrote (and are still writing) about their calendar. Admission is free for the event on Dec. 12 at 7 p.m. at the Illinois State Museum (special location for the December Science Series program).
For more information, phone 217-782-0061 or check the website at www.museum.state.il.us/events
State Park Lodges: For a winter getaway in a beautiful setting, book at stay at one or several of Illinois’ state park lodges. Find details and links for reservations on the IDNR website at http://dnr.state.il.us/Lodges/
Logo courtesy Illinois Department of Natural Resources