Mississippi River Pool Hunting Regulations


2011 - 2012 Season

Section A - Definitions

1. Blind Site - A position within 10 feet of numbered stake where blind must be constructed. Sites shall be located and marked by the Department of Natural Resources.

2. Blind Builder - Person who has been assigned a blind site as a result of the drawing.

3. Blind Partner - Person(s) chosen by the builder to assist in construction and maintenance of the blind and to share its blind claiming and hunting privileges.

4. Drawing - Procedure by which blind sites are assigned.

5. Blind Registration Card - Card issued by the Department and tacked inside each blind listing names and addresses of blind builders.

6. Complete Blind - A blind (including boat hide and dog hide) with all framework and siding constructed and in readiness for use, including final brushing.

7. Hunting Party - An individual or group of hunters occupying a single boat, blind, or hunting site.

Section B - General Area Locations

1. Pool 21 Area - Located in Mississippi River immediately above Lock and Dam 21 (Quincy) upstream to Lock and Dam 20 (Meyer).

2. Pool 22 Area - Located in Mississippi River immediately above Lock and Dam 22 (Saverton) upstream to Lock and Dam 21 (Quincy).

3. Pool 24 Area - Located in Mississippi River immediately above Lock and Dam 24 (Clarksville) upstream to Lock and Dam 22 (Saverton).

Section C - Blind Construction

1. Blinds must be at least 4 feet by 8 feet but no higher than 14 feet from the water surface at normal pool level to the top of the shooting box (sturdy enough to withstand daily usage) and must be maintained in good condition by blind builders throughout the duck season. Blinds shall be numbered and that number shall be visible from the outside of the blinds. Blinds must be placed within ten (10) feet of assigned Department-marked site.

2. Blinds built over water must be of platform construction with the platform constructed above normal water conditions - or they may be floating blinds.

3. Blinds must be completed (including final brushing) three (3) weeks in advance of opening date of waterfowl season, after which time the Department of Natural Resources shall inspect all blinds and blind sites and issue blind registration cards to those which pass inspection. Blind builders must post Blind Registration Card in the blind prior to the first day of duck season.

4. Sites on which blinds have not been built, as well as sites on which blinds of an unsatisfactory quality have been built, shall be reassigned to alternates selected at a drawing held on a day publicly announced by the Department. All reassigned blinds must be completed, including final brushing, prior to the opening date of the waterfowl season.

5. Not more than three (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 shall be accepted. As directed by the information sheet available at each site, the registration form must be filled out and returned by August 31. Failure to do so shall result in forfeiture of the blind.

6. No person shall be allowed to be a blind builder or partner on more than one State Waterfowl Management Area in Illinois.

7. Boat hides are required and must have minimum inside dimensions of 18 feet by 71/2 feet and shall be sturdy enough to withstand daily use considering the conditions of the site, and must be maintained in good condition throughout the season, and shall be completed including final brushing by three weeks prior to the opening day of waterfowl season. Failure to meet these standards shall result in forfeiture of blind site.

8. Dog hides are required and must be 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 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 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.

9. Previous year's blind builders shall have until 7 days after the next allocation period drawing to salvage materials from their blinds.

10. No trees or brush shall be cut from Long Island (Pool 21) or land designated as a National Wildlife Refuge.

11. No trees 4 inches in diameter or larger shall be cut in any area without permission.

12. All blinds located around or within the Long Island and Bear Creek Divisions of the USFWS must be built in the water, off the shoreline.

Section D - Use of Blinds

1. Blind builders or partners must occupy their blinds by one-half hour before opening hunting hour each day in order to claim their blind for the day. Blinds not legally occupied may be claimed on a first-come basis.

2. Attempts to claim blinds by any manner other than actual occupation shall be considered in violation of this part 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.

3. All hunting must be from registered blinds only EXCEPT during the September Canada Goose and Teal seasons, and after regular Canada Goose season (i.e. white fronted and light geese).

4. Blind sites shall be allocated by main drawing for a period of two years. Blinds obtained in the year after the main drawing will be assigned for a period of one year.

5. Persons under 16 years of age shall not hunt or attempt to hunt unless accompanied by an adult due to safety factors.

6. Blinds shall not be locked.

7. Claiming or attempting to claim any blind which is legally occupied, and/or harassing, in any manner, the occupants of a blind which has been legally occupied is unlawful.

8. No person shall fish within 250 yards of an occupied blind.

9. All hunting parties shall hunt over 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.

10. No person shall buy, sell, or commercialize hunting rights - either directly or indirectly.

11. Statewide shooting hours shall prevail except in Quincy Bay area which closes to all access 2 p.m. - 4 a.m. daily during regular duck season.

Equal 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, sex, 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.