Wild Things: Peoria deer hunters can compete for prize money

Jeff Lampe

Peoria doe contest

The Peoria County Farm Bureau is offering prize money for the deer hunter who harvests the most does this fall. First prize is $300 for Farm Bureau members, $200 for nonmembers.

Deer must be checked in at Ludy's in Kickapoo, Presley's Outdoors in Bartonville, Raber Packing Co. in Peoria or Wolf Hollow Archery in Rome.

For details, call (309) 686-7070.

Hunting, fishing days

Illinois has two major celebrations of Hunting and Fishing Days on Saturday and Sunday.

The southern Illinois event is at John A. Logan College in Carterville. In addition to a wide variety of vendors and booths, there will be waterfowling contests, including the Illinois State Goose Calling Championship on Saturday.

The northern Illinois event is at Silver Springs State Park in Yorkville and also includes booths, vendors and demonstrations. Visit www.huntingandfishingdays.org to learn more.

Wild on the Web

The Department of Natural Resources now offers an online course for anyone interested in learning to trap.

Those who complete the Illinois Basic Trapper Education class are only required to attend half of the traditional full-day trapper education class to receive the certification needed for a trapping license.

Visit www.trappered.com to take the class. All trappers, regardless of age, are encouraged to take the course.

Outdoors answers

Q: "I am looking for a game farm where I could offer my nearly 10-month-old golden retriever some live action. He is coming along pretty well, and I want to evaluate his progress to see whether he is ready for the Iowa pheasant season."

-- Phillip Cline, Peoria

A: Several hunting preserves offer paid upland hunting near Peoria.

- Autumn Flight Game Fields, Toluca, (815) 452-2004

- Gobblers Knob Hunting Preserve, Canton, (309) 647-3641

- Hickory Grove Hunt Club, Wyanet, (815) 699-2603

- Lick Creek Game Preserve, Pekin, (309) 347-7191

- Lick Skillet Hunt Club, Armington, www.lickskillethuntclub.com, (309) 275-3668

- Oak Ridge Sportsman's Club, Mackinaw, (309) 359-8588

- Panola Prairie Sportsmans Club, Minonk, (309) 432-2448

Birding bits

Warblers are being spotted in impressive numbers throughout Illinois as the fall migration continues.

New sightings last week included ruby-crowned kinglets, jaegers, yellow-bellied sapsuckers and brown creepers.

Buffalo Rock closure

Buffalo Rock State Park in LaSalle County will be closed during weekdays for road repairs. The park will be accessible to visitors on Saturdays and Sundays throughout the project, which is expected to last through October.

Shelter reservations will be honored. Call (815) 433-2224 for information.

Kudos corner

Scott Montgomery and Dave Snider of Manito were named Anglers of the Year in the Illinois Bass 25 Club. In second were Gary Clark of Groveland and Doug Gudat of Lacon.

By the numbers

41: Two-person teams in the 2007 National Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship. Nearly 100 teams will compete Sept. 27-29 at Lake Lewisville in Texas.

This 'n' that

This August's rainfall total of 11.47 inches was the wettest in northeastern Illinois since records have been kept in 1895 ... Cabela's opened its first Illinois store Friday at Hoffman Estates in the Prairie Stone Business Park at Interstate 90 and Illinois Route 59.

-- Peoria Journal Star