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Applications for reserved spring turkey hunts
 
By Jack Spaulding
 
Indiana’s DNR is accepting applications for reserved spring turkey hunts through Feb. 22.
Hunters may apply online for a reserved turkey hunt by visiting on.IN.gov/reservedhunt. To apply, click on the “Apply for a reserved hunt” link and have your Customer ID handy.
No late entries will be accepted. The online method is the only way to apply. Applicants must possess a valid hunting license for the species they wish to hunt in order to apply. A valid spring turkey hunting license and gamebird habitat stamp privilege, comprehensive lifetime hunting license, comprehensive lifetime hunting and fishing license or resident youth hunt/trap combo license is required to hunt or call in wild turkeys in the spring season. Non-hunting partners who plan to call in wild turkeys must be properly licensed.
The application process is consolidated into the online services website (on.IN.gov/INHuntFish) along with licenses, CheckIN Game and HIP registration. You do not need to have an online account to apply, so there is no need to log in. Even though there is no fee to apply, you must still add the registration to the cart, “Proceed to Checkout” and “Place Order.” Applicants must place an order to complete the application process.
Draw results will be available within two weeks of the application closing. For draw results, visit on.IN.gov/reservedhunt and click the “View hunt draw results” link. Another way to check to see if you were drawn is to log in to on.IN.gov/INHuntFish, where you can see the full history of your past hunt registrations. A third way to tell if you were drawn is from an email sent to applicants when results are available.
Applications will be accepted for the following properties:
Fish & Wildlife Areas (FWAs)
If you are drawn, you may bring one non-hunting partner to your hunt at an FWA.
The below properties are holding reserved turkey draws for the following dates: April 21-23, 24-25 and 26-28, April 29-May 1 and May 2-4, 5-7, and 8-9. The FWA properties are: Winamac, J.E. Roush Lake, Tri-County, Pigeon River, Kingsbury, Willow Slough, LaSalle, Jasper-Pulaski and the Aukiki Wetland Conservation Area.
The following properties are holding draws for the dates of: April 21-23, April 24-25: Hovey Lake, Goose Pond, Hillenbrand, Fairbanks Landing, Glendale, Sugar Ridge, Crosley, Deer Creek and Atterbury.
State reservoirs
If drawn for a state reservoir hunt, you may bring non-hunting partners with you.
Mississinewa Lake is holding draws for the following dates: April 21-23, 24-25, 26-28, April 29-May 1 and May 2-4, 5-7 and 8-9.
Salamonie Lake is holding draws for the dates of: April 21-23, 24-26, 27-29, April 30-May 2, and May 3-5 and 6-9.
Private lands Access
Indiana Private Lands Access (IPLA) is offering limited turkey hunts on private property. Turkey hunt draws will be for the following dates: April 21-25, April 26-May 2 and May 3-9. For more information on the IPLA program see wildlife.IN.gov/9572.htm.
Youth hunters can apply for IPLA draws for April 17-18. Youth hunt applicants must be 17 or younger to apply. Parents may enter the youth’s information into the system for them. Youth hunters must be accompanied by a non-hunting adult who is at least 18 years of age. There may only be one firearm or set of archery equipment in the field, and only the drawn hunter may harvest a turkey.
National Wildlife Refuges (NWR)
Big Oaks NWR is holding draws for April 21-23 and 24-26. Successfully drawn individuals may bring one partner, who is also allowed to hunt, with them.
Muscatatuck NWR is holding draws for the dates of: April 21-22, 23-24, 25-26. Muscatatuck NWR is also holding a draw for youth hunters (17 or younger) for the following dates: April 17-18.
For all reserved hunts, only one application is allowed per license holder. Hunters may only choose to apply for one of the above opportunities listed. No changes may be made once the application is submitted. More information is available at on.IN.gov/reservedhunt.

2021 Waterfowl Control Workshop
Individuals or businesses interested in becoming qualified as waterfowl control operators (WCOs) and/or conducting trapping, relocation, and/or euthanasia services for hire can attend the 2021 Waterfowl Workshop on Jan. 28.
The virtual workshop will run from noon to 3:30pm ET. All contractors who want to conduct waterfowl trapping, transporting, relocation and/or euthanasia for hire in Indiana during 2021 will need to attend the workshop or complete the 2021 exam. All first-time WCOs must attend the virtual workshop.
Attendance is encouraged for all WCOs, but individuals who have attended the DNR Waterfowl Workshop in previous years may opt to test out. Individuals interested in taking the test should contact Debbie Walter at dwalter@dnr.IN.gov or 812-789-2724. The 2021 exam will be available Feb. 1, 2021.
Employees of WCO contractors are welcome to attend the training, but only individuals physically conducting waterfowl trapping, transporting, relocating and/or euthanizing for hire are required to attend.
Individuals pursuing qualifying status for goose euthanasia for the first time will also need to provide a certificate of attendance for the Nuisance Wildlife Control Operators Association (NWCOA) goose management course or a DNR Division of Fish & Wildlife approved eight-hour equivalent goose course. WCOs are not qualified to conduct waterfowl management activities until all necessary paperwork has been received.
All participants must register for the virtual workshop by Jan. 22, 2021, to receive the webinar link and training materials. For more information on becoming a WCO and to register for the workshop, contact urban wildlife biologist Jessica Merkling at jmerkling@dnr.IN.gov or call 260-224-9284.

DNR requesting gray fox reports
In 2020, DNR began a gray fox research project in collaboration with the Wildlife Ecology Institute and Luther College. You can help make the project successful by reporting gray fox sightings.
Gray foxes have brown legs and ear backs, and a black stripe down the top of their tail, as opposed to red foxes, which have black legs and ear backs, and usually a white tip on the tail. Learn more about the project and find a form to submit sightings online at:
https://www.wildlifeecology.org/grayfox_indiana.html.
Readers can contact the author by writing to this publication or e-mail to jackspaulding@hughes.net. Spaulding’s books, “The Best of Spaulding Outdoors,” and his latest, “The Coon Hunter And The Kid,” are now available from Amazon.com.
1/11/2021