Ralph Loos

DNR budget for FY 2021 mostly flat, includes $27.5 million for Asian carp fight

An interesting tidbit for the state's sportsmen is the proposed budget's forecast for participation in fishing, trapping and hunting. The new budget proposal projects the state will have 710,000 fishermen in FY 2021 – the same number in FY 2020 but a drastic increase over the 579,497 anglers projected back in the FY 2017 budget.

Illinois Conservation Foundation names new executive director (again)

Without mentioning Eric Schenck, who had been executive director if the Illinois Conservation Foundation for a little over two years, DNR announced Crystal Curfman as the new executive director. ICF is an arm of the DNR, though the relationship has always been somewhat…

Finally, public will hear suggestions for two DNR gems

After a year of study, Southern Illinois University will offer its suggestions on getting the most out of hunter and angler paradise that is the 19,700-acre Pyramid State Park and the trapshooter nirvana that is the World Shooting and Recreation Complex.

Illinois anglers on Asian carp plan: Just do it and get it over with

The survey came after news broke that Gov. J.B. Pritzker wrote the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers a letter last week indicating that he had authorized the state’s collaboration with preconstruction, design and engineering work in the Brandon Road Lock and Dam near Joliet.

Leftover turkey permits to go on sale Tuesday

A technical problem of some sorts paused the sale of "leftover" turkey permits, which had been scheduled for over-the-counter sales on March 12. The Illinois DNR has announced that those permits will go on sale beginning at 8 a.m. Tuesday.…

Surprising choice for new DNR director

It’s a bit of a head-scratcher, but Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s choice to run DNR is Colleen Callahan, a 61-year-old Edwards resident who runs her own communications consulting firm, formerly worked as an agriculture broadcaster and has deep roots in Illinois politics. In his announcement, Pritzker did not point out any connections Callahan has with the state’s outdoors.

Muzzleloader harvest up slightly in 2018

Hunters harvested 3,863 deer during the 2018 muzzleloader-only season, which took place this past weekend. The harvest tally was up slightly from the 3,765 taken in 2017. According to the Illinois DNR, harvest sex ratios were 56 percent does and 44 percent bucks…

DNR promotes McClelland to lead Division of Fisheries

It appears the Illinois DNR has a new chief of the department that manages the state’s fish. Dan Stephenson, who retired from the position this summer, announced via email Monday that Mike McClelland has accepted the role of leading the Division…

About This Blog


Ralph Loos has been editor of Illinois Outdoor News since its launch in 2008. Previous to that, he was a newspaper reporter and editor in Springfield, Chicago, Denver and Nashville, Tennessee. Ralph grew up on a farm in southern Illinois (Perry County), where he fished local farm ponds and strip mine pits. An avid quail hunter, Ralph still spends a great deal of time on his family’s farm, hunting deer, squirrels and birds. He now resides in Edwardsville, where his only hobby outside of the outdoors is running marathons.

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