New State Parks Guide: The Illinois State Parks is a great resource for information on visiting a state park, fish and wildlife area, recreation area, or other IDNR site.
The Illinois State Parks guide is posted on the IDNR website in PDF format at http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/publications/documents/00000715.pdf.
To order a free copy of the booklet, visit the IDNR publications webpage and look for “State Parks Magazine” at www.dnr.illinois.gov/publications.
Online Dove Permits: Applications will be accepted through July16 for the second lottery for Illinois Free Dove Hunting Permits. Applications will be accepted from resident hunters who were unsuccessful in the first lottery, or residents who did not apply in the first lottery. Applications will also be accepted from non-resident hunters for the second lottery drawing. After the second lottery permit application deadline on July 16, hunters may apply for remaining free dove permits on a first-come, first-served basis beginning at 8 a.m. on July 30 to Aug. 25. For more information on dove hunting permit areas and free dove permits, check the IDNR website at www.dnr.illinois.gov/hunting/dove.
Renew Watercraft Registration by Phone or Online: Watercraft owners in Illinois are reminded that boat registrations (except for non-powered watercraft) are good for three years and have expiration dates of June 30. Watercraft owners can renew registration online at https://www.il.wildlifelicense.com/vehicle.php?action=vehiclelkup or by phone by calling (866) 867-3542. When renewing, watercraft owners should have handy their Illinois registration number and hull identification number (located on the registration card) and pen and paper to record their confirmation number.
Non-motorized watercraft, canoes, kayaks and paddle boats in Illinois are no longer required to be titled or registered in Illinois. Non-motorized watercraft owners are now required to purchase a Water Usage Stamp for $6 per calendar year for each of the first three vessels, and $3 each for any additional vessels (plus an agent fee of $.50 will be charged per vessel). The annual stamps expire on Dec. 31 each year. Water Usage Stamps are available from all DNR Direct license and permit vendors. Check on DNR Direct vendor locations at this link: http://dnr.illinois.gov/DNRDirectMonitor/VendorListing.aspx
Endangered and Threatened Species Notice: The Illinois Endangered Species Protection Board is accepting comments and evidence regarding the board’s preliminary decisions for revision of the Illinois Lists of Endangered and Threatened Animal and Plant Species. The board will receive written comments through July 11. Directions about how to submit comments and evidence via email, as well as a complete list of the board’s proposed changes and additional references, including the current list of endangered and threatened species approved in 2011, can be accessed at http://www.dnr.state.il.us/espb/index.htm. To request a hard copy of the list of proposed changes, other materials, or to submit hard copy written comments, contact the Illinois Endangered Species Protection Board, One Natural Resources Way, Springfield, IL 62702-1271.
Conservation World: Make plans now to attend the 2014 Illinois State Fair and visit Conservation World on the state fairgrounds, Aug. 8-17. Conservation World features nearly 30 acres of family activities including fishing, archery, and family entertainment, plus expert information on habitat enhancement, state parks, wildlife, fish, and forestry. Conservation World is open weekend days from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and weekdays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. throughout the state fair in Springfield.
Becoming an Outdoors Woman Workshop: The IDNR invites women to register now for the next “Becoming an Outdoors Woman” workshop, Sept. 26-28, at Pere Marquette State Park, Grafton. BOW workshops are designed to provide introductory instruction in outdoor-related activities. Classes are conducted in a casual and non-competitive atmosphere by experienced instructors. The cost is $170 per person, which includes the workshop, meals, class supplies and equipment, overnight lodging, prizes and more. Registration is limited, so sign up today. Workshop and registration materials can be found on the IDNR website at www.dnr.state.il.us/lands/landmgt/bow.
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 www.reserveamerica.com using a Visa or MasterCard. For more information, check the IDNR website at http://dnr.state.il.us/lands/landmgt/programs/camping/camprsvp.htm.
Wingshooting Clinics: Wingshooting clinics will be conducted at sites throughout Illinois through early November. Most clinics are conducted on weekends. Wingshooting clinics are held on IDNR sites, cooperating gun clubs, hunting preserves, and farms. 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: http://dnr.state.il.us/lands/landmgt/programs/wingshooting/wingshootinghome.htm.
Photos Needed from Kids for Conservation: IDNR is reviving the Kids for Conservation program in an online format, launching the program in August by featuring monarch butterflies. Interested kids are asked to send in images of monarch butterflies (all life stages) in Illinois, and the images will be posted on the new Kids for Conservation webpage — and at Conservation World at the Illinois State Fair in August. Photos must be taken in Illinois by an Illinois youth. The photos should not include people. The images will be posted with the first name and age of the photographer with each photograph, so please include that information (no more than three images per youth). Images should be emailed to dnr.teachkids@Illinois.gov.
Living with Wildlife: The IDNR and UI Extension have teamed up to provide residents of Illinois with information about how to coexist with wildlife, especially in urban areas. Information on preventing problems with wildlife can be found on the “Living with Wildlife in Illinois” website at http://web.extension.illinois.edu/wildlife/