DNR - Reserved hunts and State Fair


Sign up for a reserved hunt

On July 1, reserved hunt application periods opened for dove, waterfowl, deer and pheasant. The application period for dove will close July 29, and the application period for deer will close Aug. 26. Waterfowl and pheasant application periods will close on Sept. 16.

You can only apply for these hunts online. To get started with an application, go to on.IN.gov/reservedhunt and click on “Apply for a reserved hunt.” Only one application per hunt is allowed, and no changes can be made once an application is submitted. Applicants must possess a hunting license valid for the hunt for which they are applying. 

To find out more about reserved hunt applications that are open or opening soon, visit on.IN.gov/reservedhunt


Interested in learning to hunt or shoot?

We invite you to join us at a workshop and learn from the experts:

Fishin 'Pond

State Fair Fishin’ Pond volunteers needed

Want to teach kids how to fish? We still need more than 100 volunteers to help out at the State Fair Fishin’ Pond.



Visit us at the Indiana State Fair

This year, Fish & Wildlife will offer several free educational presentations during the Indiana State Fair, Aug. 2–18.

Please be sure to join us at the DNR’s Natural Resources Building for the following programs:

  • Saturday, Aug. 3: Native Plants & Pollinators, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Saturday, Aug. 3: Bowfishing, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Sunday, Aug. 4: Pond Management, 1 - 2:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, Aug. 10: The Bear in Your Backyard: Living with Indiana’s Carnivores, 2 - 3 p.m.
  • Sunday, Aug. 11: Indiana Box Turtles, 10 a.m. - noon
  • Sunday, Aug. 11: Living with Wildlife, 2 - 4 p.m.
  • Friday, Aug. 16: Magnificent Macroinvertebrates, 2 - 4 p.m.
  • Saturday, Aug. 17: Indiana Hellbenders, 10 a.m. - noon

We will also be at the Pathway to Water Quality (located on the east side of the fairgrounds next to the Boy Scout Bridge), offering these free educational programs:

  • Tuesday, Aug. 6: Aquatic Macroinvertebrates, noon – 1 p.m.
  • Saturday, Aug. 10: Pond Management, 1 – 2 p.m.
  • Sunday, Aug. 11: Living with Wildlife, noon – 1 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 14: Aquatic Invasive Species, 1 - 2 p.m.

We look forward to seeing you at the Indiana State Fair.

Learn to fish this summer

Are you new to fishing or do you want to advance your fishing skills? Consider attending one of the following workshops:


July is Lakes Appreciation Month

Gov. Eric Holcomb has proclaimed July 2019 as Lakes Appreciation Month. Lakes and reservoirs are among Indiana’s most valuable natural resources and need to be protected for future generations. They provide drinking water, irrigation, energy, recreation, scenic beauty and wildlife habitat.

You can assist Indiana and its partners by participating in the Secchi Dip-In, which helps to track water transparency trends and changing water quality. If you would like to participate in the celebration of Indiana’s lakes, check out the North American Lakes Management Society website.


Educational signage helps neighbors appreciate native plantings

Plantings of native wildflowers and warm-season grasses are incredibly beneficial to wildlife, but may appear untidy in neighborhood settings.

“Hardscaping elements” such as decorative art, fencing or educational signage can help neighbors understand that native plantings are not neglected spaces. Educational signage provides information about the native planting to people passing by and helps them understand why an area is important.

A good way to obtain signage is to enroll your planting in a participating conservation program such as those offered through the DNR, National Wildlife Federation or a local Soil and Water Conservation District. Small educational signs for pollinators and songbirds can also be purchased at many retail stores that carry garden supplies, or ordered online from signage vendors.



Pollinator habitat installed at Indianapolis school

Students at Wendell Phillips School 63 got their hands dirty and planted native plants for a new outdoor classroom. As part of the Indiana Natural Resources Foundation’s Give Adventure grant and a grant through Reconnecting to Our Waterways, the school received assistance from the DNR, Groundwork Indy, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and Indy Parks. They will plant three native habitat installations. The first installation, a pollinator garden in the front of the school, was completed with help from Wendell Phillips' students.



Don’t pick up mussels or their shells

As the summer continues to heat up, many of our rivers and streams will start to lower, exposing large sand and rock bars.  If you have ever walked along these areas, you may have encountered a stranded freshwater mussel or noticed a trail in the sand as a mussel tries to get to deeper water. 

Mussels have a single foot, similar to your tongue, which they use to move. This makes it difficult to move quickly and get to safety. While it might be tempting to use a mussel as fish bait or to take home some shells for your rock garden, remember that it is illegal in Indiana to take live freshwater mussels or shell material. 


Nongame Wildlife Fund at Work: Reptiles

Indiana has two species of rattlesnake: the eastern massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus), which occurs at sites scattered in the northern part of the state, and the timber rattlesnake (Crotalus horridus), which inhabits the forested hills of southern Indiana. Between the two species, timber rattlesnakes are larger and are more likely to be encountered. Outdoor enthusiasts may encounter these snakes while enjoying the rugged terrain in Brown, Morgan and Monroe counties.

Timber rattlesnake activity spikes during the summer, when male rattlesnakes are searching for a mate. Normally calm and quiet, these snakes do not always rattle when approached. Watch your step while hiking along trails or stepping over fallen logs in Indiana’s hill country. If you need to step over a log, first peek over to make sure there are no snakes sitting on the other aside, as they tend to hunt in such spaces.

The odds of encountering a rattlesnake are low in Indiana, but they do reside here, and you should be mindful of their presence. DNR herpetologists are continually recording observations of endangered species like timber rattlesnakes, so if you see one and snap a photo, you can report your sighting to HerpSurveys@dnr.IN.gov.

Monitoring of rattlesnake populations is paid for by the Nongame Wildlife Fund. To help Indiana’s rare wildlife, consider donating: on.in.gov/nongamewildlifefund.


NRC to meet July

The Indiana Natural Resources Commission is scheduled to meet on Tuesday, July 16, at Fort Harrison State Park, at the Garrison in Indianapolis.

For more information, visit https://www.in.gov/nrc/.

Recent news releases

Volunteers needed to count turkey broods

CHAP announces 2019 successful grant applicants

Deer Hunt Registry signups begin July 1

Hybrid striped bass to be stocked in Indiana lakes

Skamania steelhead season heats up in Northwest Indiana

Invasive black carp nearing Indiana waters




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 Wildlife.IN.gov.