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 Illinois

  Welcome to the Virtual Newsroom 

Get the latest news releases about trapping and furbearers in Illinois.

See our Publications and Information section for news about trapper education programs, videos, regulations and more!

"Wild Illinois" leads students on a journey to learn about history and wildlife conservation
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is offering a “virtual” trip for late-elementary schoolteachers, students and their parents.  With a few mouse clicks, students can journey back to the earliest days of the Illinois Territory when voyageurs and Native Americans hunted the prairies, forests and rivers.
read full news release | view related images | Wild Illinois History website

Conservation Police Officers Take a Walk on the Wild Side
It’s one of the most demanding, diverse and dangerous jobs at the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Yet you’d never know it when smiling conservation police officers chat-up visitors at county fairs about safe boating or teach hunter education courses.
read full news release | view related images | Highly regulated

Illinois Trapper Irv Schirmer Wins National Award for Work in Conservation Leadership, Education and Outreach
Irv Schirmer, an Illinois trapper from Marengo, has won the Fur Takers of America's prestigious American Heritage Award. The national honor is given annually to an outstanding individual or organization for promoting trapping as an important wildlife conservation activity.
read full news release | view related images | hunters and trappers care| trapper education courses

Illinois River Otters Thrive; Removed From List of State Threatened Species
Illinois river otters passed a huge milestone in statewide recovery efforts in September 2004, when Illinois Department of Natural Resources officially removed them from its list of "state threatened species." Today, Illinois river otters thrive as populations jumped from an all-time low of 100 in the 1970s to more than 4,600 today. More notably, otters now reside in the Chicago area -- an idea that would have been unheard of just a few years ago.
read full news release | view related images | ecology & conservation


Illinois Hunters and Trappers Are Taught to Measure Success Through Safety and Responsibility
Illinois hunters and trappers are better educated and safer than ever before, according to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. For more than 25 years, more than 500,000 hunters and trappers have participated in the mandatory Illinois hunter and trapper education courses. Courses help students pursue these activities safely and emphasize respect for wildlife and the environment.
read full news release | view related images | trapper education courses


Improved Standards, Ethics and Technology Guide Modern Fur Harvests in Illinois

The days of trappers using foothold traps with teeth ended more than a quarter century ago in Illinois, and trap sizes were restricted almost 75 years ago. But negative images about trapping persist in many people's minds. "What most folks don't realize is that trappers care about wildlife and work hand-in-hand with state and federal agencies to conserve them," says Bob Bluett, wildlife diversity biologist.
read full news release | view related images | BMPs

Hunters and Trappers Are Champions of Wildlife in Illinois
As hunters and trappers gear up for another set of seasons involving Illinois' abundant wildlife, it's a great opportunity to reflect on contributions that the state's 294,000 licensed hunters and 3,000 licensed trappers add to wildlife conservation. Our hunters and trappers care about wildlife and have a huge interest in maintaining their populations and habitats. They are some of the biggest champions of wildlife in Illinois.
read full news release | view related images | hunters and trappers care | trapper education courses

 

Trappers and Hunters Help in Recovery: Once-Rare Bobcats Stage Big Comeback in Illinois
For more than a century, bobcats were a rare sight in Illinois, but that's quickly changing. Thanks to conservation tactics by Illinois Department of Natural Resources, along with the help of trappers and hunters, bobcats are staging a big comeback. Today, bobcats are found statewide.
read full news release | view related images | ecology & conservation
 

Illinois Coonhunters and Hounds Are a Breed Apart
They are deep in the woods on frosty November nights or cracking through frozen sloughs until February - but look closely. All you'll see is a wan shaft of light flickering through the trees. You might hear a spooky bawl that ricochets off stars so near you almost could touch them, if you reached a bit higher.
read full story | view related images | hunters and trappers care | trapper education courses

 

 

Beaver photo by Steven Wayne Rotsch/Painet Inc.

Illinois Beavers Contribute to Wetlands and Wildlife; Often Are Tough Customers for Homeowners and Farmers
Beaver populations in Illinois have jumped to all-time highs in modern times. As a result, beavers are a blessing and a bane for Illinois residents. Regulated trapping is the most effective tool to manage beaver populations.
read full news release  |  view related images | ecology & conservation


Coyote photo by Bob GressChicago Area Is Home to Growing Numbers of Coyotes

Chicagoans talk passionately about Da’ Bears and Cubs, but there is a growing presence in Chicagoland: da’ coyotes -- not a sports team, but the real four-legged critters. Nuisance wildlife trappers can be key to controlling coyote numbers.
read full news release  |  view related images | ecology & conservation


Red fox photo by USFWSOn the Rise in Urban Illinois:
Red Foxes Have Moved to Cities in Search of Better Life

A recent study shows that in recent years, red foxes have set up housekeeping in urban and people-centered areas in Illinois. Learn more about red foxes and their urban lives.
read full news release  |  view related images | ecology & conservation


Raccoon photo by USFWSChicago Area Experiences Problems as Wildlife
Flourishes in Less-Than-Wild Places

Fifty-eight percent of homeowners in five Northeastern Illinois counties experienced wildlife problems in the past year. Nuisance wildlife trapping is key to controlling urban wildlife populations.
read full news release  |  view related images | ecology & conservation

 

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