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Shutdown Affects Youth Deer Hunt Season

Some youngsters hoping to take part in this weekend's firearm deer hunt at Lake Shelbyville may be out of luck. It's all thanks to the partial federal government shutdown.

The issue revolves around hunting land owned or overseen by the federal government. Those sites are closed right now because of the government shutdown.

According to a press release from the Army Corps of Engineers, this weekend's youth firearm deer hunt at Lake Shelbyville is cancelled.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources tells us there are several hunts on sites controlled by the DNR. There are also others on privately-owned land and federal land. In those areas, the DNR just issues the permits.

"Because of the issues with the federal government, there could be a few sites that are closed," DNR representative Chris McCloud said. "Again, that's not something that we decide. If you are issued a permit for one of those sites that is closed, we will issue you a refund. If you are not able to use it, you have that option."

McCloud said to get a refund, you can send your permit, along with a note saying you want a refund, to:
Illinois Department of Natural Resources
Attn: Permit Office
1 Natural Resources Way
Springfield, IL 62702-1271

McCloud said the other option is to keep the tags, because they can be used in the late antlerless deer season. But, he warns, not all sites may participate in that late hunt.

Here's a list of sites that, according to the Illinois DNR, could be closed if the government is still shut down.

Adams County
Mississippi River Pools 21 and 22

Henderson County
Mississippi River Pool 18

Jackson/Williamson/Union Counties
Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge

Jefferson/Franklin Counties
Rend Lane State Fish and Wildlife Area and U.S. Corps of Engineers-managed areas of Rend Lake

Jo Daviess County
Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge - Lost Mound Unit, including IDNR properties Eagles Landing and Stewardship Park. (These properties require a special permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which is affected by the shutdown.)

Mercer County
Mississippi River Pool 17

Moultrie County
Lake Shelbyville project lands, including the Shelbyville State Fish and Wildlife Area

Pike County
Mississippi River Pool 24

Shelby County
Lake Shelbyville project lands, NOT including Eagle Creek and Wolf Creek State Recreation Areas

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