- FEATURE PHOTO IMAGE BY LOCAL NATURE PHOTOGRAPHER DAVE SODERSTROM.
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources has a lot on its plate in January, including a spring turkey-hunting application deadline, Bald Eagle Days at several state parks and scholarships for high school seniors and grants for teachers.
The Bald Eagle Days are out of our area, but there are plenty of chances to see bald eagles right here in Kane County. Check out the photos by Dave Soderstrom.
Some of the following make great day or weekend trips for Kane County nature lovers.
Spring Turkey Applications: There is still time for hunters to apply for the second lottery for 2018 Illinois Spring Wild Turkey Season permits. The application deadline for the second lottery is Jan. 11. Go to the turkey-hunting page of the DNR website for more information.
Pere Marquette Bald Eagle Days: Enjoy watching bald eagles on the Illinois and Mississippi rivers near Pere Marquette State Park this winter by participating in one of the park’s popular Bald Eagle Days tours. The informative programs are conducted on select winter dates. The programs are free, but registration is required by calling 618-786-3323.
Late-Winter/CWD Deer Season Jan. 12-14: The Illinois Late-Winter Antlerless-only and Special CWD deer hunting seasons conclude on Jan. 12-14. There will be 22 counties open for Late-Winter season and 15 counties open for the Special CWD season. Hunters should check the information page on the IDNR website to make sure the county they intend to hunt is open for the Late-Winter or Special CWD season.
Eagle Days on Old Chain of Rocks Bridge Jan. 13-14: The Eagle Days at the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge Festival is scheduled for from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 13-14. Visitors can view eagles through spotting scopes from the historic Old Chain of Rocks Bridge at Granite City.
ICF Scholarships: Illinois high school seniors can apply by Jan. 19 for the Illinois Conservation Foundation’s 2018 Conservation Achievement Scholarship program. The ICF awards scholarships to outstanding high school seniors in Illinois who demonstrate effective, voluntary, long-term dedication to the preservation, protection or enhancement of the state’s natural resources. Detailed instructions and the 2018 application form can be accessed through the ICF website.
INPC Meeting: The Illinois Nature Preserves Commission will meet at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2018 at the Illinois Department of Natural Resources headquarters, One Natural Resources Way, Springfield, IL 62702. The meeting is open to the public. For more information, phone 217-785-8686.
Dickson Mounds Winter Gathering Jan. 27: Participate in a traditional Native American Gathering at Dickson Mounds Museum on Sat., Jan. 27. Enjoy a variety of activities and demonstrations, including storytelling, music and dancing. Vendors will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Lunch will be available from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Activities will be held from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free, but donations are appreciated. All ages are welcome. Dickson Mounds Museum is located between Lewistown and Havana off Illinois Routes 78 and 97. The museum is open free to the public from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day. For more information call 309-547-3721.
Starved Rock Bald Eagle Watch Weekend Jan. 27-28: The Bald Eagle Watch Weekend in and around Starved Rock State Park is set for Jan. 27 and 28. Activities are scheduled from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days at the Illinois Waterway Lock and Dam Visitor Center, Starved Rock Visitor Center and Starved Rock Lodge. The Bald Eagle Watch Weekend is hosted by the Illinois Audubon Society, IDNR, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Starved Rock Lodge, Starved Rock Audubon, Starved Rock Foundation, Ameren Illinois and the Illinois Raptor Center.
Ice Fishing Safety: Ice fishing can be great fun, but you need to take ice fishing safety seriously. Review important ice fishing safety information on the I Fish Illinois website.
Fulton-Mason Eagle Day Feb. 3: Join the annual Fulton-Mason Eagle Day event from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 3. Activities include live raptor programs, hands-on activities and crafts for kids, and bird watching in various locations in Lewistown and Havana, IL. The event is free and for all ages.
Illinois Biodiversity Field Trip Grants: Teachers in Illinois can apply now (through Jan. 31) for the annual Illinois Biodiversity Field Trip Grant program. Funding for the program is donated by the Independence Tube Corporation in Bedford Park, the Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Foundation in Skokie, and the D. F. and M. T. Grohne Family Foundation in Wilmington. Application details for these nature field trip grants are online, and the application deadline is Jan. 31.
Camping Reservations: It is never too early to make your reservations for campsites and shelters for many Illinois state parks and other IDNR sites for 2018. Reservations can be made online through the Reserve America website using a Visa or MasterCard.
SOURCE: IDNR news release