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Contact Us & FAQs

FAQs

  • What should I do if I find a baby wild animal?

    If you find what appears to be an orphaned animal, first be sure it is actually in need of help. Remember:

    • Adult animals rarely abandon their young. The adult may be out of sight gathering food. Leaving young unattended is normal for many species. To minimize discovery by predators, adults may only return a few times a day.
    • Do not hover to see if a parent has come back to their young. An adult animal will not come near their young if a person is standing nearby.Give the young animal space and only check back periodically. If you can’t tell if the mother has checked the nest, place straw or grass over the nest and return later to see if it has been disturbed.
    • Baby animals should not be handled. Though human scent may not cause parents to abandon their young, it can alert predators to the young animal’s presence. They can carry diseases or parasites that may transfer to people. Young animals can also inflict damage by biting or scratching people trying to help.
    • Rescuing young wildlife is legal, keeping them is not. You can rescue truly orphaned and/or injured wild animals without a permit, but the animal must be given to a permitted wildlife rehabilitator within 24 hours. You cannot obtain a wild animal possession permit for a young animal you collected from the wild. Young animals must be turned over to a wildlife rehabilitator who is trained on how to properly raise and release the species.

    Individuals interested in becoming licensed as a wildlife rehabilitator can find more information here.

    Please note that the Indiana DNR does not provide services for injured or orphaned wildlife. We rely on licensed wildlife rehabilitators to assist with these situations.

  • What should I do if I find an injured wild animal?

    The first step is determining if it is actually injured. Clear signs of distress include:

    * Bleeding or clear signs of injuries such as bruises, cuts, punctures or broken bones
    * Looks thin, weak, cold or soaking wet
    * Signs of diarrhea
    * Flies, fly eggs, maggots, ticks, lice or fleas have infested the animal

    If a wild animal shows any of these signs and is unable to move or run away effectively, it may be time to call a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for help. View more advice.

    Please note that the Indiana DNR does not provide services for injured or orphaned wildlife. We rely on licensed wildlife rehabilitators to assist with these situations.

  • Where can I report sick or dead wildlife?

    Visit this web page.

  • How can I have a positive wildlife experience at home?

    As populations in urban areas increase, wildlife habitat is radically and rapidly changing. Due to these habitat changes, some wildlife becomes displaced while other wildlife quickly adapts and thrives in human-dominated areas. As people change habitats, there may be increased human-wildlife interactions and they may not always be positive. Wildlife that may take advantage of human resources include raccoons, opossums, coyotes, white-tailed deer, foxes, and a variety of bird species. For more information, visit our website. To keep interactions with wildlife positive, follow these tips:

    • Do not feed wildlife. Remove both food and water sources. Feeding wildlife can potentially habituate animals, disrupt their natural biology, spread disease, facilitate conflict with other wildlife, and can lead to poor diets.
    • Prune tree limbs away from the roof (10 feet away is best) or install a 3-foot wide band of sheet metal (6 feet above the ground) around the trunks of trees which overhang your house (take care not to girdle the tree). This will reduce access to your roof by wildlife.
    • Garbage cans should be kept indoors when possible. Garbage can lids should be locked or tight-fitting to prevent access. Care should be taken to make sure cans are not easily tipped over.
    • Install metal skirting (i.e. strong hardware cloth) around the bottom of a deck to prevent a wild animal from making a den underneath.
    • Provide shelter structures for fish in ornamental ponds and water gardens to provide protective cover. Consider covering the pond during the night with metal screening.
    • Cover window wells with grates or hardware cloth.
    • Seal up holes around and under home foundations to help keep out wildlife. You can bury ¼ inch mesh hardware cloth 1-2 feet deep in places where animals might gain access to your crawl space through digging.
    • Mark large windows with strips of white tape or raptor (hawk) silhouettes to avert birds from flying into the window. Avoid placing feeders close to windows.
    • Cover compost piles when not in use.
    • Pick up fallen fruit and vegetables to avoid attracting wildlife.
    • Keep grills and grease traps covered and clean to prevent attracting wildlife.
    • Keep pets supervised at all times when outdoors and on leashes when being walked. Pets weighing approximately15 pounds or less are more susceptible to predation.
    • Keep domesticated birds in covered enclosures that are routinely maintained.
    • Observe wildlife from a distance. Do not handle or remove wildlife without proper licenses or permits.
  • What should I do when a wild animal gets in the house?

    Many kinds of animals could make your home theirs. Animals enter homes for a few reasons: food, warmth, or a place to have their young. Raccoons and squirrels are common invaders due to their ability to climb. Signs that these animals are in your home are usually obvious. Raccoons are large animals and need a good size opening to make their way into a home. Squirrels usually enter the home along eaves, chimneys, or anywhere they can pull away siding. They often leave behind signs of chewing. Both squirrels and raccoons are fairly noisy and usually heard. Other possible intruders could be birds, bats, opossums, and snakes. Prevention is always the best measure - install approved chimney caps, seal eaves, and secure any loose siding or roofing material to prevent entry from occurring.

    Try to identify the animal and how it has entered your home. Depending on the animal, you may be able to take care of the situation yourself. We recommend contacting your district wildlife biologist for advice specific to your situation.

    Please note that the Indiana DNR does not provide wildlife removal services. If you do not want to trap or remove an animal yourself, you can contact a qualified Wildlife Control Operator or Waterfowl Control Operator. Operators determine their own rates and fees. For more information, visit the Living with Wildlife web page.

  • Where can I find information about deer hunting?
  • If I purchase a youth hunting license when I am 17, but turn 18 before the license has expired, may I still use it?

    Yes. Youth hunting licenses are valid for a full year after purchase, even if you turn 18 during that year. The next time you purchase a license, however, you will need to purchase a regular license at the normal fees.

  • Can you help me identify this animal?

    Our biologists need a quality photo or video of the animal, its tracks, feces/scat, or an audio recording to assist with identification. Standard-size objects placed next to the evidence can assist biologists with a more accurate estimate of the size of an animal or its signs. Hands and feet sizes tend to vary – objects such as rulers or dollar bills tend to work better. Identification requests can be sent to us via email or through our social media channels.

    For avid wildlife enthusiasts who may regularly encounter wildlife they need assistance with identifying, we highly recommend field guides. Our own biologists frequently use field guides in their day-to-day work.

    Find information about common Indiana wildlife on our website.

  • Can you help me identify this fish?

    Visit this web page.

  • How do I apply for or find out about job opportunities with the Division of Fish & Wildlife?

    All employment for the Indiana DNR is handled through the State Personnel Department. Search the state job bank at workforindiana.IN.gov  for current openings. To find out more information about careers in fish and wildlife, visit our Careers page.

Contact Us

The DNR Customer Service Center can be reached by phone at 317-232-4200 or 877-463-6367 or by email at CSCinquiry@dnr.IN.gov, 8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

For emergencies, contact the DNR Division of Law Enforcement Central Dispatch 812- 837-9536,

The Division of Fish & Wildlife can be contacted via e-mail at dfw@dnr.IN.gov. Division staff strive to answer questions within three business days.

Contact a wildlife biologist.

Contact a fisheries biologist.

Contact a fish & wildlife property.

Mailing address:

Division of Fish & Wildlife
Indiana Department of Natural Resources
402 W. Washington St. RM W273
Indianapolis, IN 46204