Illinois Hunting Seasons 2018 – 2019

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For every passionate hunter out there, Illinois Hunting Seasons have plenty to offer. Regardless if you’re hunting big game or small game AMAZING hunting experience is guaranteed.

One of the most crucial wildlife management tools is hunting. Every hunter is aware of the fact that they help to maintain the abundance and health of the game species by engaging in hunting. During hunting seasons in the state of Illinois, you can choose from a decent range of available games.

There are standard game animals at your disposals such as deer, wild turkey, bobwhite quail, rabbits and other small game species. Bear in mind that season dates are different for each of the species. If you have already decided what to hunt, refer to the season dates stated below.


Illinois Hunting Seasons and All Available Games

illinois hunting season dates 2019

1. Illinois Wild Turkey Seasons






*October 1 – January 20



October 20 - 28


General Season

*To Be Determined


Youth Hunt

*To Be Determined

*NOTE: During firearms deer hunting season, archery season in fall is closed due to safety. Illinois Department of Natural Resources didn’t announce 2019 wild turkey spring hunting seasons.

2. Illinois Deer Seasons




November 29 – 30
December 1 – 2 & 7 - 9


October 1 – January 20


November 16 – 18 & 29 – 30
December 1 - 2

Youth Firearms Hunt

October 6 - 8

Late Winter and Special CWD Seasons

To Be Determined

3. Illinois Small Game Seasons



Hungarian Partridge

*November 3 – January 15

Bobwhite Quail

*November 3 – January 15


October 28 – February 28


November 3 – January 15

Gray and Fox Squirrel

August 1 – February 15

*NOTE: Season dates may vary by zone. Some of the small game hunts have been temporarily closed during the firearms deer hunting season due to safety.

License Requirements

Anyone who wants to hunt in Illinois can buy a hunting license. Hunting in Illinois is allowed for both residents and non-residents. First-time hunter? No problem, Illinois offers an Apprentice License for the ones who need practicing. 

For Youth, Seniors and Disabled hunters there are special hunting opportunities. Residents that are under 18 years old need to purchase a Youth Hunting License, and always need to be accompanied by a hunter older than 21.

If you are born after January 1, 1980, you need to pass first Hunter Safety Education Course before obtaining a license. Not sure if you can use firearms?

For using firearms, any hunter will need a Firearm Owner Identification Card from the Illinois police. No matter what kind of license you need, they are all available online.

Night Hunting in Illinois

Night hunting is allowed in Illinois but only during the period when is the opening day of fox season until the midnight of the following March 15th. You can hunt using the artificial lights as long as the light isn’t attached to a vehicle.

Night vision and laser sights are allowed as well, without any restriction. This is verified with the State Law Enforcement.

Where to Hunt in Illinois?

illinois hunting seasons

Do you know that there are specially designed areas in which you can hunt in Illinois? Illinois has many Public Hunting Areas with specific regulations. Every area has a different regulation, so always check permits that are required for hunting in that certain area.

Hunting on private lands is possible but only with the permission of the landowner.

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