Request a Nuisance Animal Removal Permit from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources

I am experiencing issues with nuisance wildlife.

In Illinois, wildlife is collectively owned by the people, not by individual property owners. Additionally, most species of wildlife are protected under the Illinois Wildlife Code. This means that many species of wildlife may only be legally removed outside of the regular hunting and trapping season by a permitted Nuisance Wildlife Control Operator (NWCO) or by a property owner who has been issued a nuisance animal removal permit (NARP) by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR).

A nuisance animal removal permit (NARP) will be issued only if the animal is causing substantial property damage or if there is a serious public health or safety concern. Permits are not issued to deal with inconveniences such as squirrels raiding bird feeders, woodpeckers drumming trees, or rabbits foraging in flower beds. While these situations are understandably frustrating for the property owner, non-lethal methods can be used in those situations before lethal removal is attempted. The Wildlife Identification gallery provides species-specific guidance on how to prevent and control damage.

In cases where wildlife must be removed there are two options:

1. Hire a licensed Nuisance Wildlife Control Operator (NWCO) to trap and remove wildlife.

You should hire a NWCO if you do not have the knowledge and equipment to catch and euthanize the animal yourself legally and humanely.

2. Trap and remove wildlife yourself with a nuisance animal removal permit (NARP).

When dealing with nuisance wildlife, the first step is to confidently identify which species is causing the issue. The Wildlife Identification photo gallery includes common species and different types of wildlife damage to help with identification.

If you have tried the recommendations on and are still experiencing substantial property damage and/or a threat to health or safety, you can request a NARP from the IDNR. After completing the online NARP application, some permits may be automatically issued. Conflicts involving bobcat, coyote, river otter, American badger, red or gray fox, ring-necked pheasant, quail, and white-tailed deer requires consultation with the local IDNR Wildlife Biologist to determine if a permit is warranted.

The NARP application will guide you through the steps to resolve your wildlife issue.