SPRINGFIELD, IL – Controlled pheasant hunting opportunities will be available at 18 Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) sites this fall, and the 2009-10 season dates and permit reservation information are now available online.
Fourteen of the sites are operated by the IDNR, while four other sites will continue to be operated in a public/private partnership arrangement between the IDNR and concessionaire T. Miller, Inc.
“The controlled pheasant program provides an upland game hunting experience for thousands of hunters in Illinois each year and is a great opportunity for young hunters to have success,” said IDNR Director Marc Miller. “We hear frequently about how much the program is appreciated and we are pleased to be able to offer it again this year. Now is the time to check the web site and make plans for the upcoming season.”
The online permit reservation system for the 14 IDNR-operated sites opens Aug. 10 and permit information, season dates, and other information are now available. Detailed information and permit reservations are now available for the four sites managed by T. Miller, Inc. Hunters need to review the application instructions and season information accessible online prior to submitting an application.
Hunters should be aware of changes in the controlled pheasant hunt fee system for this season. The daily permit fee for the controlled pheasant program is now $25 for resident hunters and $35 for nonresident hunters. The daily permit fee applies to each hunter. Unlike recent years, daily permit fees for reserved permit hunters on IDNR-operated sites will be collected at the site hunter check station on the hunt date. Hunters will need to be prepared to pay permit fees with cash. IDNR-operated sites will not accept checks and are unable to accept credit or debit cards.
The public/private partnership controlled pheasant hunting areas are Chain O’Lakes State Park in Lake County, Silver Springs State Park in Kendall County, Ramsey Lake State Park in Fayette County, and Horseshoe Lake State Park in Madison County. Information about controlled pheasant hunting at these sites is available on the concessionaire’s website at www.tmillerinc.com or via a link on the IDNR website at http://www.dnr.state.il.us.
Of the 14 sites operated by the IDNR, four offer only the Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt opportunity for young hunters between the ages of 10-15. Those four sites are the Mackinaw River State Fish and Wildlife Area in Tazewell County, Clinton Lake State Recreation Area in DeWitt County, Edward Madigan State Fish and Wildlife Area in Logan County, and Sangchris Lake State Park in Christian and Sangamon Counties.
Nine sites provide lengthy hunting seasons for hunters as well as special hunting days for young hunters. Those nine sites are Johnson Sauk Trail State Park in Henry County, the Des Plaines State Fish and Wildlife Area in Will County, Kankakee River State Park in Kankakee County, the Iroquois County State Wildlife Area, Moraine View State Recreation Area in McLean County, Sand Ridge State Forest in Mason County, Jim Edgar Panther Creek State Fish and Wildlife Area in Cass County, Eldon Hazlet State Recreation Area in Clinton County, and Wayne Fitzgerrell State Recreation Area in Jefferson and Franklin Counties.
The Green River State Wildlife Area in Lee County provides 13 days of controlled pheasant hunting during a season that extends from early November until just after Christmas.
At Des Plaines, Moraine View and Eldon Hazlet, hunting opportunities are available for hunters with disabilities where special vehicles are provided to assist with the hunt.
Online permit reservations for the first drawing period on IDNR-operated sites will be accepted from 8:30 a.m. on August 10 through midnight on August 23. Two additional drawing periods are scheduled thereafter. Hunters need to review the application instructions and season information on the controlled pheasant hunting website prior to submitting an application. To navigate to the controlled pheasant hunting website once the IDNR website http://www.dnr.state.il.us has been accessed, hunters should follow these directions:
On the IDNR Home Page click on the "Hunting" icon
Then click on "Upland/Small Game Hunting"
Then click on "Controlled Pheasant Hunting Areas Permit Reservation System"
IDNR-operated controlled pheasant hunting sites will continue to have a portion of their hunter quota allocated to standby hunters. Standby hunters acquire permits and pay permit fees at the site hunter check station on the day of the hunt. For those sites involved in the Illinois Youth Pheasant Hunt, standby permits are only available at Edward Madigan State Fish and Wildlife Area and Sangchris Lake State Park.
Hunters without computers are encouraged to gain access to the controlled pheasant hunting online reservation systems by checking with family or friends or by using a computer at their local public library. Completing a permit reservation online takes less than five minutes.
For complete details, check the controlled pheasant hunting website at http://www.dnr.state.il.us or the T. Miller, Inc. website at www.tmillerinc.com.