SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) today announced proposed waterfowl season dates and bag limits for the 2012-13 seasons. The recommendations include 60-day duck seasons in each of the state’s four waterfowl hunting zones, along with Canada goose hunting seasons of 90 days in the North and Central zones, a 83-day Canada goose season in the South Central Zone, and a 71-day Canada goose season in the South Zone.
The Illinois seasons are based on a five-year plan for waterfowl hunting season dates that was developed last year and continues through the 2015 season. For 2012-13, Illinois will open the regular duck, Canada goose, and snow goose seasons on Oct. 20 in the North Zone, Oct. 27 in the Central Zone, Nov. 10 in the South Central Zone, and Nov. 22 in the South Zone. White-fronted goose seasons open Nov. 5 in the North Zone, Nov. 19 in the Central and South Central zones, and Nov. 22 in the South Zone.
The proposed daily duck bag limit is six (6) and may include no more than four (4) mallards (two hens), three (3) wood ducks, one (1) mottled duck, two (2) redheads, four (4) scaup, two (2) pintails, one (1) black duck, and one (1) canvasback. The proposed daily bag limit of mergansers is five (5), only two of which may be hooded mergansers. The possession limit for ducks and mergansers is twice the daily bag limit by species and sex.
For Canada geese and white-fronted geese, the daily bag limit will be two (2). For snow geese, the proposed daily bag limit is 20 birds. The possession limit for Canada geese and white-fronted geese is twice the daily bag limit. There is no possession limit for snow geese.
The state’s regulations are subject to final approval by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service later this summer.
The IDNR 2012-13 season dates are outlined below.
Illinois Waterfowl Regular Season Dates – 2012-13
Youth - Oct. 13-14
Duck - Oct. 20 – Dec. 18
Canada goose - Oct. 20 – Jan. 17
Youth- Oct. 20-21
Duck - Oct. 27 – Dec. 25
Canada goose - Oct. 27 – Nov. 12 and Nov. 20 – Jan. 31
South Central Zone
Youth - Nov. 3-4
Duck - Nov. 10 – Jan. 8
Canada goose - Nov. 10 – Jan. 31
Youth - Nov. 10-11
Duck - Nov. 22 – Jan. 20
Canada goose - Nov. 22 – Jan. 31
Illinois 2012-13 Snow Goose and White-Fronted Goose Season Dates
Regular Season: Oct. 20 - Jan. 17
White-fronted Geese: Nov. 5 – Jan. 17
Regular Season: Oct. 27 - Jan. 31
White-fronted Geese: Nov. 19 – Jan. 31
South Central Zone
Regular Season: Nov. 10- Jan. 31
White-fronted Geese: Nov. 19 - Jan. 31
Regular Season: Nov. 22 – Jan. 31
White-fronted Geese: Nov. 22 – Jan. 31
The Illinois waterfowl zone maps are available on the IDNR website at http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/hunting/waterfowl/Pages/MapsApprovedWaterfowlZoneLines.aspx
The September 2012 early Canada goose season is Sept. 1-15 with a daily limit of five (5) and a possession limit of 10 geese in the North and Central zones, and a daily limit of two (2) and a possession limit of four (4) geese in the South Central and South zones. Illinois’ 16-day 2012 statewide teal hunting season is Sept. 8-23 with a daily limit of four (4) and a possession limit of eight (8). Shooting hours for the September teal season are different from the regular season. Shooting hours during the September teal season are from sunrise to sunset.
Additional details on the duck, goose, and other migratory bird hunting seasons will be available on the IDNR website at www.dnr.illinois.gov
and in the 2012 Illinois Digest of Waterfowl Hunting Regulations, available in September.