Record start to bowhunting tops Illinois Hunting Report 10-07-08

SHARE Record start to bowhunting tops Illinois Hunting Report 10-07-08


Illinois bowhunters are off to a record start through Sunday, Oct. 5, despite crop harvest being far behind schedule.

Forest wildlife program manager Paul Shelton sent this:

Harvest this year [through the first five days] was 6229, compared to 2951 (2007), 4281 (2006), and 4690 (2005). Not all of the previous years’ results contain an entire weekend, which definitely factors into such early season results. 2007 was Mon-Fri; 2006 was Sun-Thurs; and 2005 was Sat-Wed. We had very cooperative weather during this period, although crops were just beginning to come out in this part of the state. Sex ratios this year so far are 71.4% female; 28.6% male. Top five counties are Pike (333), Peoria (190), Fulton (161), LaSalle (141), and Vermilion (138).

Through Sunday, corn harvest statewide was only 10 percent complete, compared to 71 last year.

When big buck photos start coming in (I would guess later this month), Buck of the Week will begin again.

During hunting seasons, the extended online Illinois hunting report is posted here on Tuesdays. Otherwise, the Illinois Hunting Report comes at the end of the Midwest Fishing Report in the Sun-Times on Wednesdays.

With the aerial surveys for waterfowl being flown (they are weather dependent), I will update if needed.

If you have suggestions, email me at or post in the comments.

Full report follows.


During the youth deer hunting season (Saturday-Sunday, Oct. 11-2), all trappers and hunters including small game, migratory bird, furbearer, archery deer and turkey hunters, must comply with the requirements to wear blaze orange in counties open to youth deer hunting. Waterfowl hunters are exempt. All counties are open to youth deer hunting except Cook, DuPage, Lake and that portion of Kane county east of State Route 47.


The youth deer hunting season is Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 11-12. Previous permits required. All counties are open to youth deer hunting except Cook, DuPage, Lake and that portion of Kane county east of State Route 47.

The IDNR is offering hunters a new way to reeducate themselves on treestand safety. and the Treestand Manufactures Association are offering a free online safety course which is available through the IDNR website at under the “What’s New” section.

Archery season opened Wednesday, Oct. 1.

Random daily drawings for firearm/muzzleloader deer permits run through Nov.7.


Friday is the application deadline for youth duck hunts at Spring Lake SFWA Nov. 9 and Donnelley/DePue SFWA Nov. 15-16; and, youth goose hunts at Union County SFWA, Horseshow Lake SFWA and some southern Illinois clubs on Dec. 29-30. Go to, then click hunting button; or call (217) 785-8060.

The DU Migration Map is posted here .


Though few hunters are trying, conditions are better with cool weather, leaves are falling and vegetation thinning.


Archery season opened Wednesday, Oct. 1.


First season runs through Oct. 24.


Season opens Nov. 1.


Season opens Nov. 1.


Season, for Sora and Virginia rails only, runs through Nov. 14.


Season ends Dec. 21.


For IDNR hunting info, click here.

For the Illinois 2008-09 Digest of Hunting & Trapping Regulations, click here.

For the 2008-09 Digest of Waterfowl Hunting Regulations, click here.

For the Illinois Public Hunting Areas Report, click here.

For Illinois crop reports (generally posted Monday afternoons), click here.

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