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520 ILCS 5/2.34

    (520 ILCS 5/2.34) (from Ch. 61, par. 2.34)
    Sec. 2.34. Dog trials.
    (a) Dogs of any breed may be trained the year round in accordance with the provisions of this Act.
    (b) During the periods of time when it is unlawful to take species protected by this Act, the only firearms which shall be used in the training of dogs from sunrise to sunset shall be pistols with blank cartridges. No other gun or ammunition may be in immediate possession during this time. No person or persons in, along with, or accompanying the dog training party, shall be in possession of any firearm or live ammunition, except pistols capable of firing only blank cartridges during the hours from sunset to sunrise. All organized field trials or training grounds approved by the Department shall be exempt from this provision unless in accordance with the Firearm Concealed Carry Act.
    (c) No field trial shall be held without a permit from the Department.
    The following Department areas shall be designated as horseback field trial sites; Lee County Conservation Area, Des Plaines Conservation Area, Moraine View State Park, Middle Fork Fish and Wildlife Area, Hamilton County Conservation Area, and Wayne Fitzgerrell State Park. The Department shall provide and maintain quality wildlife habitat on these sites.
    Field trials shall be scheduled only from September 1 through April 30 in the Northern Zone and September 1 through April 15 in the Southern Zone. The Department maintains the authority to schedule and administer field trials. The boundary between the Northern Zone and the Southern Zone shall be U.S. Route 36. However, (i) if the opening date of the field trial season falls on Sunday, the season will begin on Saturday of that weekend; and (ii) if the closing date of the field trial season falls on Saturday, the season will conclude on Sunday of that weekend; and (iii) if during the final days of the field trial season a field trial organization begins a field trial which is subsequently interrupted due to inclement weather, the field trial organization may complete the trial, subject to the Department's approval, even though the field trial season has ended. The field trial organization must complete the trial on the first possible day or days. Field trials for the retrieving breeds are exempt from these field trials season provisions and shall have no closed season.
    The fee for field trials shall be established by the Department by rule.
    (d) The Department is authorized to designate dog training areas and to grant permits for all field trials including those field trials where game birds reared under Section 3.23 are released and taken in accordance with the rules and regulations set forth by the Department. Applications for permits for such trials and training areas shall be accompanied by detailed information as to the date and the location of the grounds where such trial area or training grounds is located. Applicants for field trial or dog training permits must have the consent of the landowner prior to applying for such permit. Fees and other regulations will be set by administrative rule.
    (e) All permits for designated dog training areas shall expire March 31st of each year.
    (f) Permit holders for designated dog training areas must possess a wild game breeder's permit or a game breeding and hunting preserve area permit and may utilize live bird recall devices on such areas.
    (g) Nothing shall prevent an individual from using a dog in the taking of squirrel during the open season.
    (h) All hand reared game released and shot at field trials shall be properly identified with tags as provided for by this Act and such birds shall be banded before they are removed from the field trial area.
(Source: P.A. 102-237, eff. 1-1-22.)