The warm days
of June, and
the end of
once all I needed to lure
me outdoors for a day of
fishing. It takes a little more
planning today, but
whether my motivation is to
spend time with family and
friends, to test my skills
against a wary largemouth
bass or to just sit quietly on
the lake recharging my batteries, fishing
remains a key element in my life.
If you haven’t experienced fishing,
June is a great time to give it a try by
participating in one of the Department of
Natural Resources introductory fishing
programs. And for the nearly 760,000
licensed Illinois anglers
hooked on fishing, I chal-lenge
you to reach out to
the community this month
and take someone fishing.
You’ll be richly rewarded.
June 9-12 is the 2006 Illi-nois
celebration of Free Fish-ing
Days when it is legal for
any person to fish in waters
wholly or in part within the
jurisdiction of the State,
including the Illinois portion
of Lake Michigan, without
possessing a sport fishing license, inland
trout stamp or salmon stamp. For more
information, call (217) 782-9990 or email
Throughout the summer months, thou-sands
of children and their families will
have the opportunity to attend a free DNR
Urban Fishing Program clinic where they
can put their new-found fishing knowl-edge
to practice. Clinics are presented on
weekdays at 39 locations throughout the
state, and arrangements may be made for
groups, including scouts, seniors and
people with special needs, to attend. A
schedule of clinic dates and locations is
available under the press releases section
To break down one barrier to partici-pating
in the sport, DNR and partner
agencies make loaner fishing equipment
available at more than 174 locations
around the state. For a list of participat-ing
sites, visit www.dnr.state.il.us/fish/
index.htm or call (217) 782-6424.
VOLUME XIV, NUMBER 6
OUTDOOR ILLINOIS (USPS 0978-720) is published
monthly by the Department of Natural Resources,
Office of Public Services, One Natural Resources Way,
Springfield, IL 62702-1271, phone (217) 782-7454,
(Publication number: ISSN 1072-7175)
Periodical Postage Paid at Springfield, IL
POSTMASTER: Send address changes to OUTDOOR
ILLINOIS, Department of Natural Resources, Dept. NL,
One Natural Resources Way, Springfield, IL 62702-1271.
Rod R. Blagojevich Governor
Sam Flood Acting Director
Leslie Sgro Deputy Director
Deborah C. Stone Deputy Director
STAFF: Kristin DiCenso, office director; Kathy Andrews,
editor; Joe McFarland, staff writer; Adele Hodde, chief
photographer; Charles J. Copley, design & layout; Tim
W. Gosteli, graphics support; Ronda Brown, produc-tion
coordinator; Holli Cole, circulation; Curt Conrad,
Illinois Department of Natural Resources
Internet Address: www.dnr.state.il.us
Copyright 2006 Illinois Department of Natural
Resources. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole
or part is prohibited without the written permission
of the publisher.
Equal opportunity to participate in programs of the Illi-nois
Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) and those
funded by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other
agencies is available to all individuals regardless of race,
sex, national origin, disability, age, religion or other non-merit
factors. If you believe you have been discriminated
against, contact the funding source’s civil rights office
and/or the Equal Employment Opportunity Officer, DNR,
One Natural Resources Way, Springfield, IL 62702-
1271; 217/785-0067; TTY 217/782-9175.
All public meetings conducted by the Department of
Natural Resources will be accessible to handicapped
individuals in compliance with Executive Order No. 5
and pertinent state and federal laws, upon notification
of the anticipated attendance. Handicapped persons
planning to attend and needing special accommoda-tions
should inform the Department of Natural
Resources at least five days prior to the meeting by
telephoning or writing the Equal Employment Opportu-nity
Officer, Department of Natural Resources, One
Natural Resources Way, Springfield, IL 62702-1271,
phone (217) 785-0067.
Department of Natural Resources information is avail-able
to the hearing impaired by calling DNR’s Telecommu-nications
Device for the Deaf (217) 782-9175.
The mission of the Illinois Department of Natural
Resources is to manage, protect and sustain Illinois’
natural and cultural resources; provide resource-com-patible
recreational opportunities; and promote natural
resource-related public safety, education, and science.
Printed by the Authority of
the State of Illinois
Illinois Department of
Printed on recycled and
recyclable paper with soy-based ink.
June 2006 OutdoorIllinois
Interested in advertising in OutdoorIllinois? Contact Curt Conrad
at (217) 558-1222 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit the historic, cultural and natural resources along the Illinois and
Michigan Canal from Chicago to Morris in Part One of this series.
Complying with length and creel limits helps maintain quality fishing
opportunities for anglers today—and for years to come.
9What’s a Pumpkinseed?
This scrappy little panfish is as fun to catch as it is to admire for its
rainbow of iridescent colors.
Diving Into History
Lake Michigan’s shipwrecks provide fascinating lessons in Illinois
and maritime history, biology and the sport of diving.
Trashing Our Parks
Before doing your civic duty and picking up the random trash in our
state parks, know that the meth lab epidemic has struck.
A Bolt from the Sky
June is Lightning Awareness Month. Common sense goes a long
way to protecting life and property when storms approach.
DNR’s Office of Mines & Minerals, Mine Safety and Training Division
staff carry the message for safe handling of fireworks.
On the Cover
A member of the sunfish family, the pumpkinseed (Lepomis gibbosus)
can be identified by the red or orange spot on the tip of its operculum
flap and many irregular golden spots on its side. To view additional
images by Eric Engbretson, Engbretson Underwater Photography,
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