IDNR Newsbits for June 2017

June 9, 2017
Firearm Deer Permit Applications:  Resident and non-resident deer hunters can apply for the second lottery drawing for 2017 Illinois Firearm Deer and Muzzleloader-only Deer permits.  The deadline to apply for the second lottery is June 30.  For more information on deer hunting, check the website at


Apply Now for Non-Resident Archery Deer Permits:  The online lottery application period is open through June 30 for Non-Resident Illinois Archery Combination Deer permits for the 2017-18 deer season.  A link for the online application is available on the IDNR website:
Non-residents may apply for one combination archery permit per season.  The upcoming Illinois Archery Deer season is Oct. 1, 2017 – Jan. 14, 2018 (except closed in firearm deer counties on Nov. 17-19 and Nov. 30-Dec.3, 2017).


Online Dove Permits:  Online applications will be accepted from resident Illinois hunters through June 30 for the first lottery for Illinois Free Dove Hunting Permits for hunting at select state sites.  Applications may be submitted for the second lottery by resident hunters who were unsuccessful in the first lottery, residents who did not apply in the first lottery, and non-resident hunters for the second lottery drawing from July 7-21.  After the second lottery permit application deadline on July 21, hunters may apply for remaining free dove permits on a first-come, first-served basis beginning at 8 a.m. on July 28-Aug. 25.  For more information on dove hunting permit areas and free dove permits, check the IDNR website at
Reminder:  Illinois Free Fishing Days are June 16-19.  For more information on fishing in Illinois:

Check Your Boat Registration:  The IDNR reminds boat owners in Illinois to check their three-year boat registration/decal and renew their registration if it expires on June 30, 2017.  Renewing watercraft registration can be done online through the IDNR website at or by phone by calling 1-866-867-3542.  To renew registration, have available the watercraft’s Illinois registration number, the first six characters of the watercraft’s hull ID number, the first three letters of the registered owner’s last name, and a credit card. For details on Illinois watercraft registration requirements and three-year boat registration fees, check the IDNR website at


Non-motorized watercraft, including canoes, kayaks, paddle boats, or sail boards in Illinois, are no longer required to be titled/registered in Illinois, unless the vessels have a motor or sail.  Non-motorized watercraft owners are required to purchase an Illinois Water Usage Stamp for $6.00 per calendar year (for each of their first three vessels, and $3.00 each for any additional vessels).  An agent fee of $0.50 is charged per vessel.  The 2017 Illinois Water Usage Stamp is valid through December 31, 2017.  Water Usage Stamps are available over-the-counter from IDNR license and permit vendors.  Find a vendor through the IDNR website at
Two Rivers Family Fishing Fair:  Join the fun at the 26th annual Two Rivers Family Fishing Fair at Pere Marquette State Park near Grafton, IL on Sat., June 10 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.  The free event features fun for children and families.  For details:


Illinois State Parks Guide:  The 2017-18 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:  Summer is a great time for camping in Illinois.  Make campsite and shelter reservations for many IDNR sites online through the Reserve America website at using a credit card.


Sportsmen Against Hunger:  The Illinois Conservation Foundation thanks hunters for supporting the Illinois Sportsmen Against Hunger program with donations of 15,523 pounds of venison during the 2016-17 deer seasons.  Hunter-donated venison is prepared by participating local meat processors for donation to local food pantries.  Thanks to the participating meat processors for their support, including Houser Meats, Rushville; Korte Meats, Highland; Mike’s Market, Louisville; Miller’s Meat, Red Bud; Freedom Sausage, Earlville; Golden Meat Locker, Golden; Raber Packing, Peoria; and, Bob’s Red Fox, Pleasant Hill.
Fall Turkey Applications:  Resident Illinois hunters can apply online for permits for the 2017 Illinois Fall Shotgun Turkey season (Oct. 21-29). The first lottery application deadline is July 3.  For more turkey hunting information, check the IDNR website at


Wingshooting Clinics:  Wingshooting clinics will be conducted this summer and fall in Illinois 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 this year’s wingshooting clinic schedule and more information, check the IDNR website: