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Jeff Lampe
Jeff Lampe

Jeff Lampe has been outdoor writer at the Journal Star in Peoria for 12 duck seasons. He lives in Elmwood with his wife Monica, sons Henry, Victor and Walter, and Llewellin setter Hawkeye. A native of Buffalo, N.Y., he is an avid fan of the Bills and still has mental scars from four consecutive Super Bowl losses. Outside of hunting and fishing, Lampe's main passion in Illinois was Class A boys basketball (which sadly no longer exists). Former publisher of the Class A Weekly newsletter, Lampe is a co-author of "100 Years of Madness" and "Classical Madness," both books focusing on prep basketball in Illinois.

Illinois Outdoors


A Web log by Jeff Lampe of the Journal Star

Wild things 12-7-08

December 07, 2008 at 03:14 AM


Percent increase from 2003 to 2006 in the acres of Illinois land controlled by outfitters who book deer hunts.

Fishing still allowed

Fishing will still be allowed at Moraine View and Weldon Springs, even though both those state sites were closed on Sunday.

Department of Natural Resources spokesman Chris McCloud said the state must allow certain activities at closed parks as a condition of federal funding at those sites.

Eagle exhibit

Dickson Mounds Museum has a new exhibit on the bald eagle that features the photographs of Dunlap photographer Jim Miller. The exhibit runs through April 1 and includes information on the life cycle, habits and ecology of bald eagles.

Miller will present an illustrated lecture on Dec. 20 at 5 p.m. as part of an opening reception that is free and open to the public. Those interested are asked to RSVP by calling (309) 547-3721 before Dec. 15.

Deer winners

John Schultz of Peoria Heights, Mike Howie of Potomac and Max Letterly of Lincoln were the latest winners in our prize giveaway at Prairie State sponsored by Lone Wolf Stands. To enter the monthly drawing for free tree stands, visit and submit a deer hunting story from this season or any previous season.

More bucks in bows

Why is there less shooting during gun season? No question one reason is the influence of outfitters in parts of the state including Pike County.

“It’s a hunter distribution thing. You have fairly large tracts of land tied up by guys who pay good amounts of money to shoot a trophy buck. Obviously, that’s going to cut down on the amount of shooting,” said Paul Shelton, Illinois deer biologist. “Bowhunting is where the money is. Not only is it easier to get a permit, the season is so long you can have all these five-day hunts.

“Also, from the perspective of hunter success, you can get more guys coming in and taking less deer. It’s less of an impact on your money base, which is trophy bucks.”

Did you know?

Illinois waterfowlers shot an estimated 141,000 Canada geese during the 2007-08 season and also shot an estimated 97,000 snow geese during the conservation order season.

Gearing up

East Peoria angling Web master Larry Dozard is offering his 2009 Best Times Fishing Calendar for just $10. That includes postage, a $5 coupon to Gander Mountain, fishing guide discounts and even free samples.

Dozard also has pocket-sized calendars for the boat or tackle box. Click here to ordert or mail a check to: Larry’s Fishing Hole; P.O. Box 2602; East Peoria, IL 61611.

Tip of the week

Did cold weather keep you from deer hunting this weekend? Remember, your unused firearm hunting tags are valid for the late-winter antlerless-only season Jan. 16-18 provided your county is open to hunting.

The DNR has also reopened the application period for late-winter season permits. Click here to apply. 

This ‘n that

The Toluca Sportsman’s Club has a big buck contest for youngsters 16 and under. Call (815) 228-9695.

... Guests at the Jan. 24 Independent Sports Club wild-game feed in Kickapoo will include Ozzie Virgil Jr., not Ozzie Smith Jr. Also there will be Fergie Jenkins, Lee Smith and Steve Trout. For tickets call (309) 691-9200.

... This year’s Cabela’s MWC tournament out of Spring Valley will be March 28-29 on the Illinois River.


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