Going hunting with my family and friends is one of my favorite fall activities and I am thankful Indiana has always been a welcoming state for hunters and outdoor enthusiasts. From fishing to hunting and trapping, Indiana is a great place for Hoosiers to practice their passions and traditions, while at the same time keeping safety in mind. With many people across our state enjoying the outdoors, there is important information to know that ensures future generations can enjoy the same wildlife we do.
The first thing to consider before hunting season is determining what animal to hunt and the designated season. There are multiple seasons for different game, mostly in the fall months. For example, deer season has multiple periods, split into different categories and dates. The archery period begins Oct. 1 and ends on the first day of January. However, the firearm hunting period lasts from Nov. 12 – 27 and there are multiple other dates for different animals like wild turkey or quail. More information can be found at www.in.gov/dnr.
Another important part of preparation is obtaining a hunting license. Both fishing and hunting licenses can be bought at various retailers throughout the state. Licenses can also be bought online by visiting DNR’s website. Anyone born after Dec. 31, 1986, must complete a one-time hunter education class through DNR to purchase a hunting license. The course is available both online and in the classroom. To sign up for the online course or to find dates and locations for nearby classroom courses, visit www.hunter-ed.com/indiana.
With more than 300,000 people participating in deer hunting activities in the state annually, it's important to keep safety a top priority. A few tips to ensure safe hunting this year include: having a plan before you hunt, knowing your target and what is beyond it, carrying emergency equipment and marking all ground blinds with 144 inches of solid hunter orange, as required by law. Falls from tree stands account for the majority of Indiana hunting injuries so always be careful and follow directions when using this equipment.
I also encourage you to donate any unused venison to food banks, which can be done through the Sportsmen’s Benevolent Fund and coordinated by Hoosiers Feeding the Hungry, Indiana Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry and the Dubois County Sportsmen’s Club. During the 2015-16 hunting season, more than 67,300 pounds of venison were donated by Indiana sportsmen and sportswomen to help feed the hungry. This is an outstanding testament to Hoosier hunters.
Best of luck to all the sportsmen and sportswomen on a successful and safe hunting season. Indiana is a beautiful state and I can’t wait to enjoy it right alongside you during the upcoming months.
Please contact me with any questions or input at 317-232-9793 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Learn more about the work being done at the Statehouse by signing up to receive my email updates at www.in.gov/h74.
State Rep. Lloyd Arnold (R-Leavenworth) represents portions of Spencer, Dubois, Perry, Crawford and Orange counties.
A high-resolution photo of Arnold can be downloaded by clicking here.