Application deadline nears for state park deer management hunts

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The Division of State Parks is seeking volunteer hunters to participate in deer management hunts at 17 locations later this year. Applications must be received by Aug. 26.

Properties where hunting is allowed with firearms only (any firearm legal to take deer on public land in Indiana) are Chain O’Lakes, Charlestown, Harmonie, Indiana Dunes, McCormick’s Creek, Ouabache, Pokagon, Prophetstown, Shakamak, Spring Mill, Summit Lake, Tippecanoe River, and Whitewater Memorial state parks, as well as Cave River Valley Natural Area.

Properties where hunting is allowed by archery only (i.e., any archery equipment legal to take deer in Indiana) are Clifty Falls and Fort Harrison state parks, and Trine State Recreation Area.

The dates for the hunts are Nov. 18-19 and Dec. 2-3.

Volunteers can apply online at wildlife.IN.gov/5834.htm, where additional guidelines can be found under the State Park Deer Management Draw Hunts heading.

Management hunts are carried out exclusively to achieve an ecological objective – to ensure balanced and healthy natural communities for all plants and wildlife within park boundaries.

Successful applicants are allowed to take up to three deer. Only one can be antlered. Deer harvested at a state park management hunt are not counted toward regular statewide bag limits. Trophy hunting, or passing on does or smaller bucks to wait for a larger buck, is counter to the ecological objective of state park management hunts and is strongly discouraged.