Select Indiana State Park properties will close temporarily for controlled deer management hunts in the coming weeks.

Each hunt runs two days. The first hunt is Nov. 18 and Nov. 19. The second is Dec. 2 and Dec. 3. The participating state park properties will close to the general public on the evening before each of the two hunts.

Participating state park properties are: Chain O’Lakes, Charlestown, Clifty Falls, Fort Harrison, Harmonie, Indiana Dunes, McCormick’s Creek, Ouabache, Pokagon, Prophetstown, Shakamak, Spring Mill, Summit Lake, Tippecanoe River, and Whitewater Memorial state parks, as well as Cave River Valley Natural Area and Trine State Recreation Area.

These state park properties will re-open the morning after each two-day hunt. All Indiana state park properties not mentioned will be operating under normal hours.

Indiana DNR biologists evaluate which state park properties require a deer management hunt each year based on habitat recovery and previous harvest rates at each park. The state parks are home to numerous natural communities that serve as significant habitat. The deer management hunts help control browsing by deer to a level that helps ensure healthy habitat for native plants and animals.

Only individuals selected from the draw may participate at any site.

A full report on the 2018 deer management hunts is at stateparks.IN.gov/files/sp-DeerRMRR.pdf. The 2019 report will be available in March 2020.

Information regarding 2020 state park deer management hunts, including online applications, will be available next summer at on.IN.gov/reservedhunt. The application deadline is usually in mid-August of the year in which the hunts are to take place.

Mark Bennett has reported and analyzed news from the Wabash Valley and beyond since Larry Bird wore Sycamore blue. That role with the Tribune-Star has taken him from Rome to Alaska and many points in between, but Terre Haute suits him best.

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