Free fishing days, learn to hunt & fish events


Free Fishing Days, May 18, June 1-2

Indiana residents do not need a fishing license or a trout and salmon stamp to fish the state’s public waters on Free Fishing Days. Parks across the state will be hosting fishing events. Check out the DNR Calendar for an event near you.


Upcoming Learn to Hunt/Fish Events

Interested in hunting or fishing, but not sure how to do it? Attend our Learn to Hunt/Fish events to learn from the experts:


Remember to clean, drain, and dry this boating season 

As the weather warms and more people get out on their boats, the DNR reminds boaters to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species by cleaning, draining, and drying their watercraft when they are finished on the water.

  • Clean when leaving the water, clean all equipment that touched the water. This includes watercraft hulls, trailers, shoes, waders, life vests, engines and other gear. Remove all visible plants, algae, animals and mud.
  • Drain accumulated water from watercraft or gear, including live wells and transom wells, before leaving the ramp or public access point.
  • Dry once home, let all gear dry for at least five days before using it in a different water body.
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Crew Captain workshop, May 9

Are you an educator or youth leader wanting to bring fishing into your classroom or community? Attend this free Crew Captain workshop and learn how. You'll get access to equipment and materials to help.



Spring turkey season underway

As a reminder, turkey hunters have until May 12 to bag a gobbler for 2019 Spring Wild Turkey Season. The bag limit is one bearded or male turkey. Check out our Where to Hunt map for hunting grounds near you.



Help Indiana’s turtles by keeping them wild

There are few things more harrowing than watching a turtle try to cross the road. You can help the turtle cross, but don’t take it home. Several of Indiana’s turtle species are illegal to take or possess, including the Eastern box turtle (pictured above).

If you encounter a turtle who may need help, remember:

  • People often encounter nesting females on roads during May and June. If a female is taken out of the wild, she can no longer add to the population.
  • Turtles are long-lived species and have significant care requirements. Captive turtles cannot be released into the wild. They can introduce diseases or parasites to the wild population, and they will likely not survive.
  • You can help turtles cross the road. Always move the turtle across the road in the direction that it was heading.
  • Any turtle collected from the wild requires either a legal license or permit, and all reptile eggs and endangered species or species of special concern are protected.


Delay mowing for bobwhite quail

Are you a landowner who routinely mows your property? If so, consider waiting to mow until after the majority of ground nesting animals have reared their young, typically in late August. Ground nesting animals such as the bobwhite quail require grassy, undisturbed areas to rear young in. By delaying mowing, you will be able to enjoy more wildlife on your property throughout the year.



Injured wildlife: When to help and when to walk away

Do you know what to do if you find an injured wild animal? The first step is determining if it is actually injured. Clear signs of distress include:

• Bleeding or clear signs of injuries such as bruises, cuts, punctures or broken bones
• Looks thin, weak, cold or soaking wet
• Signs of diarrhea
• Flies, fly eggs, maggots, ticks, lice or fleas have infested the animal

If a wild animal shows any of these signs and is unable to move or run away effectively, it may be time to call a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for help. You can find a list of wildlife rehabilitators on our website.

Please note that the Indiana DNR does not provide services for injured or orphaned wildlife. We rely on licensed wildlife rehabilitators to assist with these situations.


Nongame Fund at Work: Bats

Bats in North America have been greatly impacted by a fast-spreading disease called white-nose syndrome. White-nose syndrome was first discovered in Indiana during 2011 winter surveys. This fungus has since been responsible for species-wide declines, wiping out 90% of individuals in some bat species populations. However, you can help preserve our bat populations. If we protect good bat habitat and provide shelter for summer roosting bats, there is a chance the survivors could support future populations.

Donations to the Nongame Wildlife Fund aid biologists in conducting surveys for these bats. The winter cave survey shown above is an example. Donations drive our research. You can help at home by installing a bat house or volunteering to count bats emerging from a structure. Learn more about bats.





About Fish and Wildlife Management in Indiana 

Fish and wildlife management and public access are funded by fishing and hunting license revenue and also through the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Programs administered by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. These programs collect excise taxes on sporting arms and ammunition, archery equipment, fishing equipment, and motor boat fuels. The money is distributed among state fish and wildlife agencies based on land size and the number of licensed anglers and hunters in each state. Find out more information about fish and wildlife management in Indiana at