Redwing Slough/Deer Lake Hunter Fact Sheet
The Department of Natural Resources is responsible for providing outdoor recreation
opportunities for the residents of the State. Of particular concern is providing
adequate safe hunting areas on public lands throughout the State. The waterfowl
hunting program at Redwing Slough/Deer Lake provides a quality hunting experience
by limiting hunting pressure to that which occurred historically on the site.
The cultural heritage of waterfowl hunting on the site dates back to the days
when market hunting for waterfowl was unregulated. The Department of Natural
Resources is pleased to continue the tradition of waterfowl hunting on this
The site office is located at Chain O’Lakes State Park on Wilmot Road, just
south of Route 173.
Total Acres: 600 Huntable Acres:
A. AREA REGULATIONS
- All applicable regulations found in the Wildlife Code of 1971, Federal Regulations
and Administrative Orders apply on this area. Special area regulations established
under the authority provided in the above acts may be more restrictive and must
It shall be unlawful:
- To possess or consume alcoholic beverages, including beer and wine, while hunting
on this area.
- To hunt or trespass for any purpose on any portion of this area posted as a
wildlife refuge or waterfowl rest area.
- To hunt in areas posted with "No Hunting" or "Restricted Area"
B. WATERFOWL DEFINITIONS
- Blind site - A position within 10 feet of numbered stake where blind must be
constructed. Sites will be located and staked by the Department of Natural Resources.
Boat hides are not considered a part of the blind and may be separate.
- Blind builder - Person who has been assigned a blind site as a result of the
- Blind partner - Person(s) chosen by the builder to assist in construction and
maintenance of the blind and to share its hunting privileges.
- Drawing - Procedure by which blind sites are assigned.
- Blind registration card - Card issued by the Department and tacked inside each
blind listing names and addresses of blind builders.
- Complete blind - A blind with all framework and siding constructed and in readiness
for use, including final brushing.
C. BLIND CONSTRUCTION
- Blinds may be either temporary (boat blinds) or permanent. If boat blinds are
chosen, they must be within 10 feet of the marked blind site. All statewide
regulations pertaining to use of boat blinds apply. If permanent blinds are
chosen, they must meet specifications in this section (Section C.).
- Permanent blinds must be at least 4' x 8', but no higher than 12 feet above
normal pool level. Blinds and boat hides must be sturdy enough to withstand
daily usage, and must be maintained in good condition by blind builders throughout
the season. Minimum inside dimensions of the boat hide shall be 18' x 6'. Blinds
shall be numbered and that number shall be visible from the outside of the blinds.
- Blinds must include a dog hide that is on the same level as the blind. The dog
hide can either be incorporated into the blind by providing a hole at floor
level that measures at least 20 inches high by 20 inches wide or by providing
a separate compartment that is attached to the blind. Hides attached to the
blind should have a minimum floor space that measures 2 feet by 2 feet and should
be at least 2.5 feet high with two openings. One opening should be between the
blind and the dog hide, should measure at least 20 inches by 20 inches, and
should be constructed at the same level as the blind floor. The water access
opening should be at least 20 inches wide and 20 inches high. Hides either within
the blind or attached should have an enforced ramp to water level that is at
least 15 inches wide with cleats every 12 inches. Openings in the blind must
be capable of being closed when not in use.
- Previous year’s blind builders shall have until February 1 to salvage materials
from blind sites. After that date, blind materials on the site become the property
of the Department or the new blind builder as determined by the site manager.
Access for blind removal is by appointment with the site manager.
- Blind builders may not gain access to the site until the day after Labor Day.
- (1) Key will be provided to each blind winner who will be responsible to pick
up and return the key to the Chain O’Lakes State park office.
- Blinds must be completed, including final brushing, 3 weeks in advance of opening
date of Northern duck season, after which time the Department of Natural Resources
will inspect all blinds, boat hides and blind sites and issue blind registration
cards to those which pass inspection. If adverse weather or water conditions
make compliance with this rule difficult, the Site Superintendent or the District
Wildlife Manager may grant extensions. Blind Registration Cards must be posted
inside the blind prior to the opening date of the waterfowl season and remain
posted until after the close of the waterfowl season.
- Sites on which blinds or boat hides have not been built, as well as sites on
which blinds or boat hides of an unsatisfactory quality have been built, will
be reassigned to alternates selected at the drawing. All reassigned blinds and
boat hides must be completed, including final brushing, in advance of the opening
date of the waterfowl season.
- Not more than 3 persons shall be registered for assignment of any one blind
site. Blind builders shall submit partner names on a blind registration form
as designated at the site drawing. After the designated time, no changes will
be accepted. As directed by the information sheet available at each site, the
registration form must be filled out and returned before August 31. Failure
to do so will result in forfeiture of blind.
- No person shall be allowed to be a blind builder or partner on more than one
State Waterfowl Management Area in Illinois.
- Blind winners will be provided forms for the purpose of maintaining waterfowl
harvest records and an envelope for the return of the forms. It is mandatory
that these forms be returned by 3 weeks following the close of the Northern
duck season. Failure to comply will result in the blind winner and partners
listed for the blind not in compliance to lose the privilege of being a blind
winner or partner on this site for the following year.
D. USE OF BLINDS
- Attempts to claim blinds by any manner other than actual occupation shall be
considered in violation of this Order and shall be cause for arrest. The insertion
of a boat into the boat hide and/or the spreading of decoys before a blind shall
not be considered legal occupation of a blind.
- At least one of the (3) persons registered for assignment of any one blind must
be present for the blind to be considered legally occupied. The site is not
open to the public for standby hunting, i.e., unoccupied blinds may not be claimed
on a first-come basis.
- No person shall hunt, or attempt to hunt except from within a registered blind.
- Persons under 16 years of age shall not hunt, or attempt to hunt, unless accompanied
by an adult due to safety factors.
- Blinds shall not be locked.
- All hunting parties shall hunt with a spread of at least 12 decoys. The decoys
shall be staked, placed, or floating, be individually visible, be at least 8
inches long, and not be within a boat, blind or container.
E. PUBLIC DRAWING
- All blinds will be allocated for a one-year period by a public drawing. Time
and place for the drawing will be publicly announced by the Department of Natural
- A registrant for a drawing must be at least 16 years of age and possess a current
or preceding year’s Illinois hunting license, a current or preceding year’s
Illinois Migratory Waterfowl Stamp and a current Firearm Owners Identification Card unless exempted by
law. Persons exempted by law from possessing a hunting license or waterfowl
stamp must have a valid Firearm Owners Identification Card. Persons who are
under 21 years of age who do not have Firearms Owners Identification Cards must
be accompanied by an adult who has a valid Firearm Owners Identification card
in his possession at the drawing. Applicants must be present for the registration
and drawing to be eligible for allocation of duck blind sites.
F. WATERFOWL HUNTING AND SITE REGULATIONS
- Shooting hours will be from legal opening to 1:00 PM.
- The site will be open for waterfowl hunting on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday
- The Northern Zone duck season will be the only waterfowl hunting season allowed.
Goose hunting prior to and after the close of the Northern Zone duck season
is prohibited. Hunting is prohibited during any September teal season.
- Outboard motors of (6) horsepower or less are permitted on the site for blind
building and hunting.
- No person shall buy, sell or commercialize hunting rights, either directly or
- Not more than 4 persons shall occupy a blind at one time.
- Weeds and/or brush may not be cut or controlled around a blind without prior
approval from an authorized Department of Natural Resource representative.
- Bogging of blinds is prohibited.
- Use of the following species is prohibited for brushing blinds due to their
ability to readily propagate and become noxious weeds: Purple Loosestrife, Giant
additional information please contact: CHAIN O’LAKES STATE PARK, 8916 WILMOT
ROAD, SPRING GROVE, IL 60081, 847/587-5512
opportunity to participate in programs of the Illinois Department of Natural
Resources (IDNR) and those funded by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and
other agencies is available to all individuals regardless of race, national
origin, disability, age, religion or other non-merit factors. If you believe
you have been discriminated against, contact the funding source’s civil rights
office and/or the Equal Employment Opportunity Officer, IDNR, 1 Natural Resources
Way, Springfield, IL 62702-1271; 217/785-0067; TTY 217/782-9175.