Endings are beginning for hunting and lead this Illinois Hunting Report.
But it was a year to remember, such as this photo sent by suburban hunter Nate Teske about his December waterfowling at Lake Shelbyville:
Great season and great to share it with my boys and good friends on some fun hunts.
During the hunting seasons, the extended online version of the IHR, which comes at the end of the Midwest Fishing Report in the Sun-Times on Wednesdays, is usually posted here on Tuesdays.
We are getting close to the end for 2010-11.
If you have suggestions, e-mail me at email@example.com or post in the comments.
LATE-WINTER AND SPECIAL CWD DEER SEASONS
When harvest reports come in for the first part of the late-winter antlerless-only firearm deer and the special CWD deer seasons, I will post separately. The second part of the seasons is Jan. 14-16. Some county permits are available over the counter from DNR Direct permit sale locations throughout Illinois. Click here to find a permit sale vendor:
NORTHEAST ILLINOIS DEER NOTE
Bowhunters are closing in on last season's harvest of 65,864, but I think it might be a reach for them to make that by Jan. 16, when bowhunting ends.
Through 10:45 a.m. today, bowhunters reported a total of 60,872 deer.
BUCK OF THE WEEK PHOTOS
Good nominations keep coming. BOTW will have a long run this year. BOTW runs on the outdoors page in the Sun-Times on Wednesdays. I usually post it here on Stray Casts on Tuesday.
E-mail nominations to firstname.lastname@example.org
DEER AND HUNGER
Click here for info, including participating processors, on the Illinois Sportsmen Against Hunger program.
NORTH ZONE WATERFOWL
Hunting for Canada, white-fronted, snow/blue and Ross' geese, and brants ends on Saturday.
With the loss of snow cover and some river ice, geese are spread around more. But plenty of geese remain stacked in the area.
As least on the rivers, there is more open water, so geese are spread around more again. However, the key remains open water.
I am not sure if the open water on Thursday and Friday in other places made a difference or what, but hunters at Braidwood shot, unbelievably, only six geese last week. Site staff more geese are showing up again.
Mazonia lakes are locked up.
Hunting for Canada geese, snow geese and white-fronted geese runs through Jan. 31.
WATERFOWLING AT EMIQUON & MERWIN
As last week's aerial survey showed, weather pushed more Canada geese south than in recent years. I am curious whether that will reflect in different results than other recent years, or if the habits of hunters have changed so much that it won't make much difference.
Duck season runs through Jan. 23. The second Canada goose season and snow geese and white-fronted geese seasons run through Jan. 31.
Snow cover is gone and doesn't appear likely to return in time for the end of hunting for pheasant, rabbits, quail and partridge in the north zone on Saturday.
MAZONIA UPLAND NOTE
Upland game hunting at Mazonia north unit runs through Saturday.
Next Tuesday is the deadline for the second lottery for spring turkey permits for first-time applicants or rejected applicants. Click here to apply.
Through 10:30 a.m. today, bowhunters had a kill of 671.
Season runs through Feb. 15.
Hunting runs through Feb. 28.
MARSEILLES SFWA HUNTING DATES
ILLINOIS HARVEST REPORT
To find daily harvest reports on deer and turkey, click here.
WATERFOWL AERIAL SURVEYS
Click here for the latest posting of Illinois' aerial waterfowl surveys.
COYOTES AT SILVER SPRINGS
Here's another new opportunity later this hunting season to keep in mind. After the close of bowhunting in January, coyote hunting will open at Silver Springs SFWA.
ILLINOIS HUNTING ONLINE
For IDNR hunting info, click here.
For the Illinois 2010-11 Digest of Hunting & Trapping Regulations, click here.
For the 2010-2011 edition of the Digest of Waterfowl Hunting Regulation, click here.
For the 2009-10 Illinois Public Hunting Areas Report, click here.
For Illinois crop reports (generally posted Monday afternoons, holiday weekends are the exceptions), click here.