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Illinois

Grade Breakdown by Resident and Nonresident

Residents: C
Nonresidents: B+
Individual Reports and Comments
Add Your Grade
awh302 (resident)
Buck Quality: A-
Deer Quantity: B+
Deer Management: B+
I did see more deer this year than in the past. I only hunted private ground so we do what we can for management.
Bowfinatic (nonresident)
Buck Quality: B+
Deer Quantity: A-
Deer Management: B-
Pretty solid all around. Concerned dnr/management are not listening to the people and eroding some of the quality
Todd Anderson (resident)
Buck Quality: A-
Deer Quantity: B-
Deer Management: F
If we would mirror Iowa's seasons with firearms we'd have a lot of good 3-1/2 year olds get to be great 5-1/2 year olds.
Zim1 (resident)
Buck Quality: F
Deer Quantity: F
Deer Management: D
Illinois once had great public land. But in the last 20 years the politicians took over, exploiting the deer herd with their special interest group catering. It's been sad watching the decline.
Dude Mohn (resident)
Buck Quality: D+
Deer Quantity: C-
Deer Management: D+
If its brown its down
Deebz (resident)
Buck Quality: A+
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: B
I didn't get to hunt very much this year. I ended up killing a giant with my shotgun (at 10 yards...wish I'd taken my bow with me!), so I gave an A+ on buck quality. Numbers of deer could be better...
swiggy (nonresident)
Buck Quality: A+
Deer Quantity: B+
Deer Management: B+
Good place to have a chance at a buck of a lifetime.
Scott Roberts (resident)
Buck Quality: D
Deer Quantity: D
Deer Management: F
Hunting on private and public, sightings on cams and while hunting down. No deer spotted during seven day gun season. 5 deer total spotted bow hunting.
Bigbuck38 (resident)
Buck Quality: C-
Deer Quantity: D
Deer Management: F
Northern IL CWD county DNR is destroying the herd. Use to be an A county but thanks to the criminals in Springfield we will soon be an F.
1boonr (resident)
Buck Quality: D
Deer Quantity: D
Deer Management: F
I used to see over 100 deer per night late season on snow cover which would include several mature bucks now I’m lucky to see twenty with no mature bucks on most hunts
Mountain State (nonresident)
Buck Quality: A
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: A
Quality of IL bucks has never disappointed. I'm particularly fond of the fact that only one buck can be taken per archery season / firearm season.
antlerman (resident)
Buck Quality: B
Deer Quantity: B+
Deer Management: C-
I will have to say that 2017 was alot better than the last 5 years or so. We have been recovering from EHD for the last 5 yrs off and on with relapses hit and miss. I would say over all better year.
Bill S (resident)
Buck Quality: C+
Deer Quantity: C
Deer Management: F
Lost a lot of Deer in 2012, deer numbers are dramatically declined as well as quality of bucks. Too many tags issued in my county. IL just wants $$$
Paul tradhop (resident)
Buck Quality: C
Deer Quantity: C+
Deer Management: C
We had a devastating EHD outbreak in 2013 in my area, the numbers have been on the rebound slowly. Too many hunters shoot the few deer they see not knowing why they don't see as many as they used to.
Joe Place (resident)
Buck Quality: D
Deer Quantity: D
Deer Management: F
Area has been over outfitted and over hunted for years. In the last 5 years blue tongue and ehd has hit hard twice. States management program is a joke.
Justin james (resident)
Buck Quality: A-
Deer Quantity: B+
Deer Management: B+
I have 7 acres of land that is mine thats all i hunt my house is on this land too i see lots pf deer warm weather this year made them move more at night (northern Illinois)
Eric Boehm (resident)
Buck Quality: C-
Deer Quantity: C
Deer Management: D
Too many people hunt bucks and not enough doe management in our area, causing bad buck to doe ratio. Too many outfitters.
Carl waggle (resident)
Buck Quality: B
Deer Quantity: A-
Deer Management: C+
Unlimited number of does can be taken in archery season. Not good State dnr has done better recently
Scott Boehm (resident)
Buck Quality: C-
Deer Quantity: B-
Deer Management: D+
Private managed ground. Too many does because everyone around our property is only interested in shooting bucks. I disagree with the crossbow law and I think the buck limit should be one Per season.
Chad William Bogenpohl (nonresident)
Buck Quality: C
Deer Quantity: B-
Deer Management: B
Deer population and mature bucks are way down from what they used to be
Eric Hobbie (resident)
Buck Quality: C
Deer Quantity: C-
Deer Management: F
2012 ehd hit illinois hard. And the state has done the minimum on improving it. Once was known as land if the giants has now been ran to land of the jokes.
Matt Dagley (resident)
Buck Quality: D+
Deer Quantity: C
Deer Management: C-
Good doe numbers but very few bucks older than 1.5. Crossbows being legal for everyone all bow season will impact herd size and cause more declines in numbers.
Charlie Rehor (nonresident)
Buck Quality: A
Deer Quantity: A
Deer Management: A
Private Managed ground!
Troy Minor (nonresident)
Buck Quality: B+
Deer Quantity: B+
Deer Management: B+
Short gun seasons and a high price for non resident tags is great. ONly thing I would change is going to 1 buck.
Chad Buckman (resident)
Buck Quality: B
Deer Quantity: C
Deer Management: F
The state of Illinois is only interested in s long tags not managing the deer herd
Tony Beck (resident)
Buck Quality: C+
Deer Quantity: B+
Deer Management: F
State needs to go back to one buck per year for at least a couple years. Maybe even years kill 2 bucks odd 1 buck per year.
Tony Beck (resident)
Buck Quality: C+
Deer Quantity: B+
Deer Management: F
State needs to go back to one buck per year for at least a couple years. Maybe even years kill 2 bucks odd 1 buck per year.
Dennis Mock (nonresident)
Buck Quality: A
Deer Quantity: A+
Deer Management: A+
They only use shotguns in gun season! Worth it's wait in gold in my opinion!
Luke Flynn (resident)
Buck Quality: A-
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: A
Season after season the deer numbers are in decline, but I still see big bucks, and there is plenty of time to hunt them if, your lifestyle will let you.
Tom Waters (nonresident)
Buck Quality: A+
Deer Quantity: A+
Deer Management: A+
Amazing quality and quantity
Deadeye (resident)
Buck Quality: A
Deer Quantity: C+
Deer Management: D-
fortunate hunting two tracts. Deer herds vary in size but good health and buck numbers and quality good. Moderate to light pressure and 25 years of managing
Vids (nonresident)
Buck Quality: A+
Deer Quantity: A+
Deer Management: C
I'm fortunate enough to hunt Pike County, I'm in one of the best areas in the state. Incredible numbers, great bucks around, but I understand the IL DNR has management issues elsewhere.
live2hunt88 (nonresident)
Buck Quality: A
Deer Quantity: A+
Deer Management: C+
I hunted the family farm from Nov. 5-15 and saw multiple deer every sit. The majority of the bucks I saw were good size and tons of doe. Shot a 162" 11pt last day of my hunt.
Austin Potter (resident)
Buck Quality: B+
Deer Quantity: C+
Deer Management: D+
Good deer but few and far between
Robert Kelley (resident)
Buck Quality: B
Deer Quantity: C+
Deer Management: C+
Deer numbers are down. Not enough game wardens to reduce illegal hunting and with the online check in system, a lot of deer get harvested but not checked in
Don Holmes (resident)
Buck Quality: B
Deer Quantity: C-
Deer Management: D+
Over hunting by outfitters. Poor management planning by Illinois dnr allowing too many permits
Bob Atton (resident)
Buck Quality: B+
Deer Quantity: A-
Deer Management: D
Some nice bucks around early, Illinois needs to bring back check-in stations...this calling them in over the phone is bullshit
Beau Hunter (resident)
Buck Quality: C
Deer Quantity: C
Deer Management: D
IL still hasn't recovered from the massive EHD kill of 2012. We need to restrict doe harvest and cut WAY back on non-resident hunters. Non-resident leasing is out of control.
Pdavis (resident)
Buck Quality: C+
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: C-
Age class of deer is largely less than/equal to 3.5 years of age. Antler restrictions needed. Crossbow hunting should be limited.
kevo (resident)
Buck Quality: A+
Deer Quantity: A+
Deer Management: A+
I see various age classes of bucks. All deer I see are fat & appear healthy. The deer program has been successful at reducing the density but there are still good numbers in my area.
Devin Dillard (resident)
Buck Quality: B+
Deer Quantity: B+
Deer Management: C-
Poaching is a big problem here. Needs to taken care of.
TREESTANDWOLF (nonresident)
Buck Quality: B+
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: B
Based on the amount of bucks seen this and last year, which was very good, mostly 3.5 yr olds. The removal of the late doe season will help.
Taximan (nonresident)
Buck Quality: A+
Deer Quantity: A
Deer Management: A
You IL residents don't know just how good you have it, unless you've hunted Michigan lately. I've hunted IL for over 15 yrs and it continues to amaze me at the #'s and quality of bucks we harvest.
John Boles (resident)
Buck Quality: D+
Deer Quantity: C-
Deer Management: F
There are WAY too many seasonas in Illinois. The DNR needs to take away the late Doe season. When you shoot a doe in January, you are essentially killing up to three deer!!
Jeff Pals (resident)
Buck Quality: A
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: C-
We have good habitat and the best genetics. Need to change to one buck rule like IN.
shaun aden (resident)
Buck Quality: B-
Deer Quantity: C+
Deer Management: F
Rut timing seems to be off, CWD in our area we need to manage herds with nutrition as well as harvest ratios. warm weather didn't help this year.
Shednut (resident)
Buck Quality: C
Deer Quantity: A
Deer Management: F
Since Illinois introduced the call in the quality of our deer herd has steadily decreased atleast in my area do to people not calling in and reusing tags
Joseph ewing (resident)
Buck Quality: B-
Deer Quantity: C
Deer Management: F
Harvest is half what it was 10 years ago and buck quality went along with it
Critrgitr (resident)
Buck Quality: B-
Deer Quantity: B+
Deer Management: B-
Seen more than the yrs. Before. Had not much problem getting what I needed
GARY SAVELEY (resident)
Buck Quality: D+
Deer Quantity: C-
Deer Management: F
Way too many permits issued. Add that to car kills, and diseases which have hit our herd hard. And you have a formula for disaster! If we get hit by another disease in my area, it will be doomsday!!!
bumpinblaze4x4 (resident)
Buck Quality: B+
Deer Quantity: B-
Deer Management: D-
Needless late season antlerless only firearm seasons; excessive quantity of tags sold. Irrational attempted management of CWD via eradication in high density deer areas with little to no explanation.
IL Hunter (resident)
Buck Quality: A+
Deer Quantity: A+
Deer Management: A+
The quality and age structure in my area of west central Illinois is as good as its been in 10+ years.
Rick Schaschwary (resident)
Buck Quality: B
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: C
I hunt private land. Don’t know much about state management programs. Most activity came during an earlier than usual rut this year.
Todd Harrison (nonresident)
Buck Quality: B+
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: C
I own ground in Illinois as a non-resident. The IDNR cares only about killing as many deer as possible and applies zero management. However the short gun seasons still allow for better hunting then most areas.
Mike S (resident)
Buck Quality: C
Deer Quantity: D-
Deer Management: C
Saw 2 does and a buck opening archery day in my home county in northern IL. Have yet to see another deer while hunting here since then.
Ken (resident)
Buck Quality: B
Deer Quantity: A
Deer Management: C
I am lucky to have some private ground that is not overhunted. Still some quality bucks and good number of deer.
Ron bleiss (resident)
Buck Quality: D+
Deer Quantity: F
Deer Management: F
Endless doe tags = less deer. I’m in an area where it’s a “if it’s brown it’s down” mentality.
BudE (resident)
Buck Quality: B
Deer Quantity: B-
Deer Management: D+
IDNR is ran by politicians not biologist. The Farm Bureau and Insurance companies pressed for the expansion of seasons and permits that have helped decimate the deer herd.
zim140 (resident)
Buck Quality: B-
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: C
Hunted public exclusively, saw 16 diff bucks in 12 days of hunting. Alot of 2.5 yr olds, maybe 4 3.5 or older. Wish more sites have antler restriction size size (4 or more). To many tags issued.
jeffkim (resident)
Buck Quality: C
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: C
Moved here from Iowa, my first year of hunting here. Only have 10 acres but had 15 different bucks on trail cams, biggest maybe a 140ish 8pt. See more bucks then does.
XMan (nonresident)
Buck Quality: B+
Deer Quantity: A-
Deer Management: C+
Plenty of deer, but mature numbers are way down. would like to see state go to a one buck state. Far too many immature deer get killed during gun. quality has gone way down since unlimited bow tags
DENNIS KLUTHE (resident)
Buck Quality: C+
Deer Quantity: C
Deer Management: C-
For the last few years up to now, I haven't seen that many deer.
donald tabor (resident)
Buck Quality: C-
Deer Quantity: D+
Deer Management: F
State sharpshooters killing to many deer in our area because of CWD they say. Don't see many deer & didn't see one shooter buck all season.
Jay (resident)
Buck Quality: C-
Deer Quantity: C+
Deer Management: F
Only saw 1 good buck all year. Not many doe either. Overall numbers look to be down. Not sure the state cares about the quality of the herd. I think they only care how many tags they can sell.
Doug Steele (nonresident)
Buck Quality: B
Deer Quantity: A
Deer Management: A-
I own a farm that I regularly hunt in SE Illinois. While the numbers of high end bucks could be better, the numbers and overall quality of the deer herd is very good!
Andrew Manukas (resident)
Buck Quality: B-
Deer Quantity: C
Deer Management: D
Just didn't see the caliber of bucks I am used to. My area has some "CWD" so DNR is trying to wipe out the herd with sharpshooting. Not cool. Numbers are way down
Franzen (resident)
Buck Quality: D
Deer Quantity: C+
Deer Management: D
Only saw 1 shooter so far all year, spooked by a neighboring hunter. Numbers not good at most places hunted, but on par with recent years. Don't know that there is a "Deer Management Program"?
Bentstick81 (resident)
Buck Quality: F
Deer Quantity: D-
Deer Management: F
Didn't see a 120", +, buck all year. Passed on three small 6 pointers, and ONE doe. Didn't see A DEER, from the third week of Oct., til Monday after first gun season. Deer herd, down. CLUELESS DNR
Dusktildawn (resident)
Buck Quality: A-
Deer Quantity: C+
Deer Management: D-
DNR kills too many deer. Some good public hunting areas are closed 5 days a week due to pheasant hunting.
Rob Stanfa (nonresident)
Buck Quality: B-
Deer Quantity: B+
Deer Management: B+
pressure depends on neighbors and how and when they hunt?
bowhunter55 (resident)
Buck Quality: A+
Deer Quantity: B-
Deer Management: C
I hunt public land exclusively and there are some really big bucks where I hunt. Since the EHD outbreak the herd has been slowly rebuilding where I hunt. I think the IDNR sells too many tags.
JMAN (resident)
Buck Quality: A
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: C
Definitely saw some big deer, managed a 150" 10 point that I'm very happy with, just wish some would let the little guys walk and take a doe for meat but to each their own, private land
ahunter55 (nonresident)
Buck Quality: B
Deer Quantity: C
Deer Management: C
My son N.W. Ill., saw few bucks but some decent ones. Does were few. 3 bowhunters in family & they took 1 good buck + 3 missed Does. Least deer seen in 5 years all private land. Friends same result
W8N4RUT (nonresident)
Buck Quality: B+
Deer Quantity: B
Deer Management: C
frustrating laws concerning non-resident property owners, no bowhunting permitted during shotgun seasons,
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