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Corps expands hunting at Lake Shelbyville, Okaw Bluff

October 23, 2010 at 02:03 PM

Lake Shelbyville – Waterfowl hunters hunting the Army Corps of Engineers managed portions of Lake Shelbyville will be able to hunt the previously off limits 200-yard buffer zones around most developed recreational areas. For years, a 200-yard restriction around all developed recreation areas has been in effect for waterfowl hunting adjacent to a developed recreation area.  Starting on November 1, 2010, the day after the last recreation area closes for the season, waterfowl hunters with boats will be able to hunt adjacent to the shoreline of the developed recreation areas as long as they keep a minimum of one foot of water between their boat and the shoreline.  Hunters are prohibited from hunting from land within the developed recreation areas. 

Hunting within 100 yards of a boat ramp in a developed recreation area is prohibited. Dam West recreation area near Shelbyville will still be off limits to hunting within 200 yards of the shoreline because of its proximity to city limits. Coves with No Boat buoys in place will remain off limits.  Woods Lake, near Sulllivan, IL is still off limits to any type of firearms hunting, to include waterfowl hunting. 

Fishermen are reminded that they cannot fish any closer than 200 yards from waterfowl hunters.  Every year we hear about fisherman fishing right in among goose and duck decoys.  Not only is this illegal but extremely unsafe. 

In addition to the above changes, the Okaw Bluff Waterfowl Impoundment will be open to waterfowl hunting on a first come first serve basis.  Any waterfowl hunter utilizing the area must hunt from one of the established blinds.  For the 3rd year in a row, the levees were overtopped due to high water with the area receiving damage to the levees, blinds, and loss of crops.  Blind number 9 in the Sullivan Wetland Unit (West unit) is unusable at this time and is not available for hunting.  Please remember that blind #3 is slated for disabled hunters.  It can be hunted by anyone but we ask that you defer to a disabled hunter if requested.  Smartweed production in the units is outstanding and should attract waterfowl to the area.

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