Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

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Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby illinois riverfisher » Mon Oct 28, 2013 12:53 pm

I was wondering if anyone can help me out with this. I am wanting to know if I can conceal my Kayak and anchor it mid stream and hunt ducks on the fox river. I looked on Illinois DNR and it wasn't very helpful. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby KillerKowalski » Mon Oct 28, 2013 7:04 pm

Cough. First post. :clapping:

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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby hoyland2004 » Tue Oct 29, 2013 6:13 am

My interpretation of the law is that you can hunt from a canoe/kayak that is camouflaged and anchord if you have permission by the land owner. If you are on state ground or private land (floating above it) without permission it is still legal to hunt from an unpowered craft as long as it is not concealed. There are a lot of gray areas with the DNR when it comes to rivers and unpowered crafts. My best advise would be to call the conservation officer in your area and ask them what they will/won't consider legal. JMHO.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby outdrguyjr » Wed Oct 30, 2013 5:30 am

This link should help you out. I have actually hunted from my Kayak on the Fox, and it was a ton of fun. You will need to pay close attention to any homes just off the banks, as some property owners don't have a lot of patience with people if they aren't responsible.

http://www.ilga.gov/commission/jcar/adm ... 0600r.html
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby Blackcloud870 » Wed Oct 30, 2013 12:01 pm

outdrguyjr wrote:This link should help you out. I have actually hunted from my Kayak on the Fox, and it was a ton of fun. You will need to pay close attention to any homes just off the banks, as some property owners don't have a lot of patience with people if they aren't responsible.

http://www.ilga.gov/commission/jcar/adm ... 0600r.html


That's a good find outdrguy! However I am completely confused by what the document says..... :huh:

"Waterfowl hunting is prohibited on that portion of the Fox River running from the Kendall-Kane County line downstream to a line extending from the intersection of Route 71 and Douglas Street in Oswego, across the Fox River to the intersection of Hickory Lane and Riverview Drive."

I know for a fact that there is an IDNR designated blind/stake within that area that is hunted almost daily during the regular season.

In addition, there is no mention of the rest of the river (exception Lake/McHenry Counties)?

I placed 4 calls into region 2 office in Bartlett, but have yet to receive a call back regarding the topic of waterfowl hunting on the Fox River.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby KillerKowalski » Wed Oct 30, 2013 12:10 pm

The legislation is pretty clear. I am not sure the confusion here.

outdrguyjr wrote:I have actually hunted from my Kayak on the Fox, and it was a ton of fun. You will need to pay close attention to any homes just off the banks, as some property owners don't have a lot of patience with people if they aren't responsible.


Not sure how much you want to voice this especially on a public forum.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby Blackcloud870 » Wed Oct 30, 2013 1:24 pm

KillerKowalski wrote:The legislation is pretty clear. I am not sure the confusion here.

outdrguyjr wrote:I have actually hunted from my Kayak on the Fox, and it was a ton of fun. You will need to pay close attention to any homes just off the banks, as some property owners don't have a lot of patience with people if they aren't responsible.


Not sure how much you want to voice this especially on a public forum.


Interesting. Help a brother out if you could then KK b/c I guess my brain is not clicking on all cylinders today :help:

What about the area between Kane and Lake counties on the Fox? If I follow the laws as written below:

"4) Waterfowl hunters must maintain a distance of 200 yards between hunting parties, except for Department constructed blinds or staked locations.

5) No hunting is permitted within 200 yards of developed recreation areas, public use facilities, and construction or industrial sites."


As long as I am not on private property (without permission), as long as I do not trespass on Forest Preserve Property, and as long as there is no municipal restriction on the discharge of a firearm, Am I good to go? :huh:

Not trying to sound like a smartass, I am asking purely from an academic standpoint.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby KillerKowalski » Wed Oct 30, 2013 1:43 pm

Blackcloud870 wrote:As long as I am not on private property (without permission), as long as I do not trespass on Forest Preserve Property, and as long as there is no municipal restriction on the discharge of a firearm, Am I good to go? :huh:


I see your confusion. The restrictions are not part of the Fox River subsection as you can see them below. If you gave the the restriction validity state wide then all our hunting would end at 1:00 p.m. daily. We know that is not the case. Section 590 is only addressing controlled public hunting waterways.

Law is open to all interpretation until it comes to a judicial decision. The best is to read the case briefs and/or opinions. I doubt a Fox River case ever went to the ILSC or USDC, but I could be incorrect.

You hit the nail on the head with your interpretation, but landowners, as far as I know, own the river also. Without giving too much information you can physically see it if you know where to look. The DNR blinds are posted for a reason. Good luck if anyone chooses to paddle on open water and hunt it. Our laws aren't the same as neighboring states. I am sure a CO would be happy to have a contact and look for violations other than trespassing. Bottom line, this question has come up multiple times on here and other forums. Never has it been answered because no one has the balls to challenge it. I for sure wouldn't. No duck is worth an arrest that could jeopardize my ducking and career.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby Blackcloud870 » Wed Oct 30, 2013 4:31 pm

KillerKowalski wrote:
Blackcloud870 wrote:As long as I am not on private property (without permission), as long as I do not trespass on Forest Preserve Property, and as long as there is no municipal restriction on the discharge of a firearm, Am I good to go? :huh:


I see your confusion. The restrictions are not part of the Fox River subsection as you can see them below. If you gave the the restriction validity state wide then all our hunting would end at 1:00 p.m. daily. We know that is not the case. Section 590 is only addressing controlled public hunting waterways.

Law is open to all interpretation until it comes to a judicial decision. The best is to read the case briefs and/or opinions. I doubt a Fox River case ever went to the ILSC or USDC, but I could be incorrect.

You hit the nail on the head with your interpretation, but landowners, as far as I know, own the river also. Without giving too much information you can physically see it if you know where to look. The DNR blinds are posted for a reason. Good luck if anyone chooses to paddle on open water and hunt it. Our laws aren't the same as neighboring states. I am sure a CO would be happy to have a contact and look for violations other than trespassing. Bottom line, this question has come up multiple times on here and other forums. Never has it been answered because no one has the balls to challenge it. I for sure wouldn't. No duck is worth an arrest that could jeopardize my ducking and career.


Very good points KK, I appreciate your feedback. As tempting as it sounds, I have a few ideas that I've got to put into motion before I would ever even consider testing the letter of the law.

That last note really resonates, as a few ducks or geese are absolutely not worth my hunting rights.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby outdrguyjr » Fri Nov 01, 2013 11:24 am

So earlier this week when I had posted about my previous hunting from a Kayak many were looking for specific interpretation from a CO. So I sent the officer with whom I know an email asking for written confirmation of what I was already aware of...and here it is. If you are hunting a navigable waterway (which the Fox River is) you can hunt from an anchord non-motorized boat...

"sounds like you have right, just make sure you are proper distances away and don't tie up to shore, anchor out in the river and don't walk on shore unless you have permission from the land owner, and that includes retrieving birds. but if a bird does land on shore, then you are required to attempt to retrieve it, which would mean finding out who owns the land and contacting them"

If anyone wants his contact information, badge number, or a copy of the email thread I would be happy to provide it to you just send me a PM.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby Blackcloud870 » Fri Nov 01, 2013 11:26 am

PM Sent.Thank youfor posting this information up Outdoorguyjr
threedogs wrote: wrote:One word, Inflatable decoys......

DanJeffandJack wrote:I just drink beer and crush box.

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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby KillerKowalski » Fri Nov 01, 2013 6:08 pm

Maybe you should say which section of the Fox you are speaking of. Problem is a CO's interpretation is just that. The public believes what a CO or PO says is law. Often a deeply questioned statute isn't answered correctly because most CO/POs don't have the experience in court with challenges enough to answer the question. Now, there are very well law educated CO/POs. A IL police department was recently sued within the past few months. For what? Violation of Miranda rights and warrantless search. Today, we still deal with these issues. And, you would think the actions of law enforcement are constitutional. Not all the time.

Have fun hunting from your kayak. I would never even challenge it. There are plenty of other public areas to hunt without troubles and questions.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby Buckwild22 » Fri Nov 01, 2013 10:02 pm

Areas of the fox by me can only be hunted at IL DNR approved sites
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby outdrguyjr » Sat Nov 02, 2013 6:13 am

The specific area that I am referencing is south of Silver Springs State Park in Yorkville. There is a restricted area of the Fox just to the North of that extending from Oswego to Silver Springs were there are specific DNR blinds.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby cj5patrick » Sat Nov 02, 2013 8:35 am

Now we will have a bunch of idiots canoeing down the river shooting at everything that flys. As if it wasn't hard enough to keep the birds around before....
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Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby KillerKowalski » Sat Nov 02, 2013 11:33 am

Looking back at this thread if you had a "friend" who is a CO, then why come here in the first place to ask the question? Something is fishy and it's not your GFs pants this time.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby outdrguyjr » Sat Nov 02, 2013 12:18 pm

I did not start the thread...just provided some information. Not sure why so hostil KK...just trying to be helpful.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby KillerKowalski » Sat Nov 02, 2013 12:24 pm

Ah. No hostility. Misread and a joking.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby Feelin' Fowl » Sat Nov 02, 2013 1:30 pm

luie b wrote:I think you guys were right.
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Re: Kayak/non-motored boat hunting the Fox River.

Postby KillerKowalski » Tue Nov 19, 2013 8:00 am

Thought I would share this from another forum member. Pretty cut and dry and I really don't care what a CO says. It still will come down to a Judge's opinion.

"This one will make your head hurt. There is a reason that water law is a specialty unto it's own in law school. Short version............. Federal case law has allowed that the public has the right of passage on navigable waterways/rivers. The DNR and DOT maintain lists of what are official "navigable waterways". Then there are what are classified as "public bodies" of water in Illinois (which include all navigable waterways). On public bodies of water the public has the right to anchor and fish in addition to passage. Note that neither of these convey to the public the right to hunt.

Courts now seem to be following the US District Court decision out of Louisiana that only allow the fishing right within the confines of the normal river stages and channel and do not extend it out based upon flooding or "high water marks". Again, nothing allowing hunting.

Probably the best example of this is on Pool 19 of the Miss. River. Ameren owns the dam. Ameren leases out and controls the hunting rights on a large portion of that river pool. Yes, even in the middle of the Miss. River. Ameren does not control the rights to boats passing through that portion of the river (navigable waterway). Ameren also does not control the fishing rights or right to anchor (Miss. River is listed as an IL. public body of water). The marinas and boat docks have long tried to have people arrested for fishing and have posted no fishing signs since they do not like spinner baits bounced off their boats. Law enforcement correctly refuses to make the arrest because again it is public waters and the right to fish is there. Now if you set up a decoy spread in the marina for popcorn ducks, you can and would be arrested. High water, low water, no water you are posting bond on that one.

I am sure that this will be followed by the usual "well if they arrest me for that I am going to fight it in court". Well there are a few things to keep in mind about that. #1. Your attorney will have to be one that has been admitted to practice in US. Federal Court. That means that the hourly rate will be at the upper end of the scale. The guy who handled your divorce is probably not going to get the job for this one. #2. These cases are extremely complicated and your attorney better be one that specializes in water law (and the price of playing poker just went up again). #3. These types of cases require a lot of legal research and you are paying by the hour. The cost of the research alone will exceed what you will pay for a very very good duck lease.

Even when the State of IL. Dept of Transportation asks it's own Attorney General for an answer on water law, they cannot even get a straight yes or no.

https://a872f203-a-62cb3a1a-s-sites....attredirects=0"
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