New rules for reserving hunts on public lands due to coronavirus

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The Department of Natural Resources is still allowing you to apply for reserved hunts on public land this year in spite of the coronavirus pandemic.

But, Tom Despot with the DNR Division of Fish and Wildlife says to expect a few different rules to be in place for the fall hunting seasons. He tells Indiana Outdoors they are still figuring those rules out.

“We’ve had some challenges related to that, trying to make sure people social distance and that type of thing,” Despot said. “We just can’t have 300 people in a check station for a duck draw so we’ve got to figure that out and we are in the process of doing that.”

Changes were made for Indiana’s turkey season in the spring, such as the use of self-serve check-in stations for reserved hunts on public land. Despot said during the spring season the number of people using public lands for different types of hunting went way up.

“Definitely seeing a lot of increase on our public lands,” said Despot. “I think people are acing to get outside. During the spring we had a marked increase in turkey hunters and mushroom hunters and people wanting to get out and about.”

Despot reminds you that registering for a reserved hunt draw will be the same as usual for the upcoming fall hunting season. Just go to the DNR website to figure out how to apply for the drawing.

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