Select Indiana State Park properties will close temporarily for a series of controlled deer management hunts in the coming weeks.

This activity is done to control the deer population and to protect the natural habitat from overpopulation. Reducing the deer’s number also ensures that harmful ticks don’t increase in number along with the increase in the deer’s number. Regulated deer hunting also generates critical funding for state fish and wildlife agencies through the American System of Conservation Funding.

There are two separate weeks that these closures will occur.  The first hunt is on Monday, Nov. 15, 2021 until Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2021 and the second hunt  is on Monday, Nov. 29, 2021 until Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021.  The participating state park properties will close to the general public on the evening before each of the two hunts.

Participating state park properties are as follows: Chain O’Lakes, Clifty Falls, Fort Harrison, Indiana Dunes, Lincoln, Ouabache, Pokagon, Potato Creek, Shakamak, Spring Mill, Summit Lake, Tippecanoe River, Turkey Run, Versailles, and Whitewater Memorial state parks, as well as Cave River Valley Natural Area and Trine State Recreation Area.

These state park properties will re-open the morning after each two-day hunt.  All other Indiana state park properties are open to hunters at their normal hours.

Indiana DNR biologists evaluate which state park properties require a deer management hunt each year based on habitat recovery and previous harvest rates at each park.  The state parks are home to several deer populations that serve as significant habitat, and there has been a voiced concern of over-harvesting.

According to the Indiana DNR, Prophetstown will not be participating in this temporary closure.

 

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