From the Indiana Department of Natural Resources
-- Applications to participate in this year's Indiana state park deer reductions must be received by Aug. 28.
These reductions are held specifically to reduce the ecological impact of damaging deer herds present in certain state parks. Potential applicants should read details in the 2009-2010 Hunting and Trapping Guide, available at http://www.IN.gov/dnr/fishwild/2343.htm, before applying.
The special hunt application is available at indianaoutdoor.IN.gov. No paper applications are available.
Two reduction efforts will take place. The first is Nov. 16-17. The second is Nov. 30 and Dec. 1.
Participating state parks for firearms include Chain O’Lakes, Charlestown, Harmonie, Lincoln, Ouabache, Pokagon, Potato Creek, Prophetstown, Shades, Shakamak, Spring Mill, Tippecanoe River, Turkey Run, Versailles and Whitewater Memorial.
Participating state parks for archery include Fort Harrison and Clifty Falls.
Applicants must be Indiana residents, be 18 years of age by Nov. 16, and possess at least one valid Indiana deer license to apply. Each person may apply only once for each state park deer reduction effort, regardless of primary or buddy status. All applications sharing duplicate names will be disqualified. Designated areas are available for participants with special needs.
Biologists evaluate which parks require a reduction each year, based on floral recovery and previous hunter success. The state parks are home to more than 32 state-endangered plants. The reductions help maintain browsing by deer to a level that helps ecosystems recover throughout the state parks. Though the parks have had much success since the first reduction in 1993, a high no-show rate of those drawn and over-selective hunting remain a challenge for the program.