Youth hunters may apply for a reservation to hunt one of 21 Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) properties during the special youth wild turkey hunting season scheduled for April 20-21. To qualify, the youth hunters must be younger than 18 on the day of the hunt.
The reserved hunts are being conducted at the following Fish & Wildlife Areas (FWA): Atterbury, Crosley, Deer Creek, Glendale, Hovey Lake, Jasper-Pulaski, Sugar Ridge, Kankakee, Kingsbury, LaSalle, Pigeon River, J.E. Roush, Tri-County, Minnehaha, Fairbanks Landing, Hillenbrand, Chinook, Winamac and Willow Slough. Hunts will also take place at Salamonie and Mississinewa lakes.
The number of hunters allowed on each property will be limited, and hunters must register in person or by phone with the property where they wish to hunt. Hunters should register between 9 a.m.-3 p.m. local time between March 18-22 or March 25-28. Hunters may register for only one property.
Individuals wanting to sign up for Deer Creek, Fairbanks Landing, Chinook, Hillenbrand or Minnehaha hunts may do so at Goose Pond FWA. Youth hunters wanting to sign up for LaSalle FWA may do so at Willow Slough FWA.
At properties where the number of registered hunters exceeds the spots available, a drawing will be held April 1. A youth hunter may be drawn for either one or both hunt days, depending on the number of applicants. All applicants will be notified of drawing results by mail.
Applicants must possess a 2013 Youth Consolidated Hunting & Trapping License, a 2013 Non-Resident Youth Spring Turkey License with a game bird habitat stamp privilege or Lifetime Comprehensive Hunting License. Apprentice hunting licenses of the types named above may also be used. When registering a youth for one of the hunts, make sure to list the type of license being used for the hunt and the license number.
Hunts will run one-half hour before sunrise until noon at properties in the Central Time Zone, and one-half hour before sunrise until 1 p.m. on properties in the Eastern Time Zone.
Youth hunters who are selected for the hunt may check in at any time each day until the end of legal hunting hours for the property. Properties will not have a daily “no-show” drawing. Hunters interested in possible unfilled quotas at a property should phone the property for more information before showing up.
During youth wild turkey season, hunters under age 18 on the day of the hunt may take a bearded or male wild turkey. The youth must be accompanied by someone 18 or older.
The youth hunter may use any legal shotgun, bow and arrow or crossbow. The adult accompanying the youth hunter must not possess a firearm, bow and arrow or crossbow while in the field. The adult does not need to possess a turkey hunting license unless the youth is using an apprentice license, or unless the adult is calling turkeys.
The phone numbers for information or to register at a specific property are:
•Pigeon River: 260-367-2164
•Sugar Ridge: 812-789-2724
•Goose Pond: 812-659-9901
•Hovey Lake: 812-838-2927
•Willow Slough: 219-285-2704
To purchase a Youth Consolidated or Turkey license online, go to www.in.gov /dnr/fishwild
Hunter education class coming up in April
Conservation Officer Kenny Tincher and volunteer instructors will offer the Indiana hunter safety course, which will be open to the public. There is no charge for the course, which is a minimum 10 hours that covers topics dealing with hunter responsibility, firearms safety, water safety, laws, archery, muzzleloader hunting handguns and wildlife management.
The dates for the course will be April 6 and 13 from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Attendance both days is required for certification. The course will meet the legal requirements necessary for hunters born after Dec. 31, 1986, who need a certification before they may purchase a hunting license.
The course will be at Princeton Fire Department, 500 N. Embree St., Princeton, IN 47670. A map will be displayed when you click on the link to sign up for the class online. Please bring writing utensils; refreshments will be served.
Pre-registration is required, as there is a limit of 30 students for the class. Go to http://inhea.com/PassItOnIndiana and click on the “Classic Course,” type in your ZIP code and classes within 75 miles will be displayed. Scroll down to the “Princeton Fire 1” and click on it to register for the class.
Two protected birds killed in Jennings County
On March 5, Indiana conservation officers received two separate calls reporting two birds found dead in Jennings County. Officers responded to County Road 500 S. in the area of the Weston bottoms and found a dead Sand Hill crane. The officers investigated the other call on County Road 250 N. and found a dead Red Tail hawk.
Neither bird died naturally, and both suffered injuries consistent with humans being involved in their deaths. The Sand Hill crane and the Red Tail hawk are protected species in Indiana and are regulated by federal regulations, as well. Officers are asking citizens to use the Turn In a Poacher/Polluter program (TIP).
“TIP provides an opportunity for Indiana citizens to have an active part in the protection of our natural resources and be the eyes and the ears for our Indiana conservation officers, so our future generations may have the opportunity to enjoy our natural resources as well,” said Officer Zachary Walker.
The program is anonymous and allows concerned citizens to relay information to officers without revealing their identities. Citizens with information are encouraged to contact TIP by phone at 800-TIP-IDNR (847-4367) or submit information online at www.in.gov/dnr/ lawenfor/2745.htm and click on “Send An Online TIP.”
TIP is a nonprofit conservation organization whose mission is to protect our fish and wildlife resources by increasing public support and involvement in bringing violators to justice. Often cash rewards will be awarded from the TIP program.
If you do not have information but wish to support the program, contributions may be sent to: Turn in a Poacher, Inc., 402 W. Washington St., Room W255D. Indianapolis, IN 46204.
Conservation officers would like to remind individuals to keep a watchful eye and use the TIP program to help protect Indiana’s natural resources.
The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of Farm World. Readers with questions or comments for Jack Spaulding may contact him by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to him in care of this publication.