Hunting and trapping have played an important part in the lives of North
Americans for thousands of years. Within the past 200 years, these activities
provided food, clothing and income for Illinois families.
Illinois biologists safely trap and tranquilize a bobcat for radio-collaring and
extended study. License fees and special taxes from trappers and hunters further
Illinois conservation efforts.
Photo by Alan Woolf
Today, hunting and trapping play an important, but evolving, role in Illinois:
- Regulated hunting and trapping are tools to manage wildlife populations.
Hunters and trappers help reduce property damage and public health threats
caused by wildlife. They also check
wildlife in rural settings when animals become too numerous.
- Biologists use traps to control common furbearers that prey on rare and
endangered plants and animals. Biologists also use traps to capture and
release furbearers unharmed as part of scientific monitoring and research.
Illinois DNR often works with licensed trappers in all these efforts.
The federally threatened
Eastern prairie fringed orchid is protected in Illinois by trapping
beavers that flood areas where orchids grow.
Orchid photo by Rob
Beaver photo by Steve Wayne Rotsch/Painet Inc.
- License fees paid by hunters and trappers provide a majority of funding to
further wildlife and habitat management in Illinois.
- Trapping provides products that people use everyday. In addition to
fur garments, hundreds of everyday items such as soap and paint are made from animal products
that come from trapping.
Illinois DNR Believes in the Importance of Careful Stewardship
Some people oppose hunting and trapping, because they believe it is wrong to
use animals for human benefit. Others believe that animals have the same rights
as humans. Some folks have misconceptions about how hunting and trapping affect
wildlife populations in Illinois. Others doubt the humaneness of these
activities. Illinois DNR does not share any of these beliefs.
Illinois DNR believes that with careful, responsible and humane stewardship,
Illinois furbearers and wildlife can be managed as valuable, renewable natural
resources to benefit society and wildlife.
Historically, hunting and
trapping provided food, clothing and income for Americans.
Photo by LOGICSTOCK/Painet