DNR Seeks Lifeguards At State Park Facilities

Those looking to qualify for a summer job, and who may want to get bronzed in the process, can now retrieve a bit of information through the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

The DNR says it’s taking applications for summer lifeguard positions. Tests are required for first-year lifeguards at State Park facilities. Applicants who have already been lifeguards at more than 10 locations around the state are exempt from taking the test.

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DNR Hunting and Fishing Licenses Available Online

Indiana hunters and fishermen can purchase their annual licenses from retailers or through the DNR website. Annual licenses are valid from April 1 through March 31 of the next year and are available for residents and non-residents. Seasonal fishing, hunting, trapping and combination licenses are also available. Find more information online at http://www.in.gov/dnr/fishwild/2380.htm. Continue reading

DNR Prepares for Stream Trout Season With Stocking Efforts

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources is making a few changes for the spring fishing season.

The DNR says they will be stocking more than 55-thousand trout in the state’s waterways. In the past, rainbow trout have stocked in all but a few locations. Stocking efforts will be conducted prior to stream trout season beginning on April 25th.

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Fish Stocking Sees Boon In Production

Indiana saw an uptick in the number of fish being stocked in water systems last year.

A report from the Department of Natural Resources says their department and organizations with proper permits stock nearly 32-million fish in 2014. The DNR says that typically, between 22-million and 24-million fish are stocked each year.
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State Parks Seeking Volunteer Campground Hosts

Enjoy free camping at Indiana state parks and reservoir properties in exchange for doing volunteer work. Hosts work a minimum of 20 hours per week and do tasks like cleaning fire rings and restrooms, painting signs, picking up trash and welcoming and assisting campers. Volunteer periods vary at sites based on the number of applicants and amount and type of work needed. Continue reading

State Parks Host Successful Deer Reduction Hunts

Deer hunters harvested a total of 1,004 deer during controlled hunts at 18 state parks and one state natural area in November and December of 2014, according to Mike Mycroft, chief of natural resources for the DNR Division of State Parks. Tippecanoe River and Potato Creek State Parks were among the facilities where hunts were conducted to thin the herd. Final totals released by the DNR indicate hunters took 123 deer at TRSP and 136 at Potato Creek. Continue reading

Bonus Antlerless Hunting Program Starts Soon

Area hunters looking to help manage the antlerless white-tailed deer population can start at the end of the week.

Bonus quotas for the state of Indiana’s female deer have been in place for some time, but the official start of the special antlerless hunting season starts this Friday. Continue reading

State Park Field Trip Request Deadline Approaching

Educators interested in taking students in grades K-12 on field trips to state parks or reservoirs can take advantage of the new field trip fund offered by the Indiana Natural Resource Foundation.

Monday June 30 is the deadline to submit applications for the Discovering the Outdoors Field Trip Grant Program. The grant application can be found here.

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Officers Continue to Search for a Former Knox High School Graduate

Crews are searching for Ron Wood, Jr.

Crews are searching for Ron Wood, Jr.

Indiana Conservation officers have not been able to locate Ron Wood, Jr. who went missing in Lake Michigan Saturday night.

Sgt. Shawn D. Brown from the DNR Law Enforcement Division said the United States Coast Guard and DNR officers responded to the an a mile off the shore of Mount Baldy in the Valparaiso area after a report came in of struggling swimmers. Knox High School graduate, Ron Wood, Jr., 29, jumped into Lake Michigan after some swimmers became separated from the boat and were struggling to stay afloat. A nearby boat came to help as well as members of the Coast Guard who were able to save all swimmers with the exception of Wood, Jr.

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DNR Waives Fishing License Requirement This Weekend

This weekend only, Hoosiers have the opportunity to fish without a fishing license. The Department of Natural Resources has declared all Indiana waters okay to fish in with no license on June 7 and 8. To celebrate free fishing weekend Tippecanoe River State Park in Winamac is hosting a plethora of special events. Continue reading

Ron Wood, Jr. Remains Missing

Crews are searching for Ron Wood, Jr.

Crews are searching for Ron Wood, Jr.

Indiana Conservation officers are continuing in their search for 29-year-old Ron Wood, Jr.

Wood, a Knox High School graduate, went missing after jumping into Lake Michigan Saturday night to attempt to rescue struggling swimmers who drifted from their boat a mile off shore. All swimmers were rescued by the US Coast Guard and nearby boaters except for Wood who remains missing.

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Boater Education Classes Offered in Starke County

DNR law enforcementBoater education courses are planned for June 14 and July 19 in Starke County. If you successfully complete the class, you will be given an Indiana ID which allows you to operate motorboats on state waters. These IDs can be obtained by anyone 15 years of age and older.

Indiana Conservation Officers offer the first class on Saturday, June 14 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT at the Bass Lake Property Owners Association (BLPOA) Community Center at 6996 S. State Road 10. The second class will be on Saturday, July 19 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT at the Koontz Lake Homeowners Association Clubhouse at 10896 Cherokee in Walkerton.

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Bass Lake Watercraft Accident Injures Two

A Memorial Day accident on Bass Lake sends two people to the hospital. A personal watercraft driven by Jeremy Hershman, 33, of Willets, Calif. hit a watercraft operated by Amanda Marsh, 26, of North Judson, at a right angle, according to a news release from the DNR. Both were thrown into the water. Marsh was able to right her craft and drive it back to the shore. A boater helped Hershman into a pontoon boat and took him to shore for treatment. Starke County EMS took both to IU Health Starke Hospital. Marsh was treated for minor injuries and released. Hershman suffered broken ribs, fractured vertebrae and fluid on the lungs. He was transferred to Memorial Hospital of South Bend for additional treatment. Both Marsh and Hershman were wearing life jackets when the crash occurred. It’s still under investigation.

DNR: Stay Safe on the Water This Summer

DNR law enforcementDNR officials remind boat owners and passengers to stay safe on the water this summer. Lt. Kenton Turner is Indiana’s boating law administrator. He says everybody on board should wear a life jacket. Often accidents can happen too fast to get to a jacket that is stowed away. Also, Turner says passengers should never sit on the sides of a motorboat while it is in motion. If you’re planning to tow a skier or tuber, make sure you have an observer. Always pay attention to marker buoys and idle zone restriction areas. Navigational lights and anchor lights should be used between sunset and sunrise. All inland lakes in Indiana have a nighttime speed limit of 10 miles-per-hour. Alcoholic beverages should be consumed in moderation. Turner says .08 is Indiana’s legal limit.

The Handbook of Indiana Boating Laws and Responsibilities is available online at http://www.boat-ed.com/indiana/handbook/. It can also be downloaded to an eReader.

Starke County Commissioners Discuss Lake Access Issue

The Starke County Commissioners ask that any lakefront residents with questions about access rights put their concerns in writing so they can be researched and addressed. Specifically they want to know the problem and proposed resolution so the county attorney can advise whether the options they are considering are viable.

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Grants Approved to Fight Aquatic Vegetation

The Department of Natural Resources has disbursed grants totaling nearly $520,000 to fight invasive aquatic vegetation in Indiana’s lakes.

Lake users will benefit from efforts to control or manage aggressive non-native species, including Eurasian watermilfoil, curly-leaf pondweed, and starry stonewart that can take over and clog lakes.

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