Crossbows to be permitted in Illinois for upcoming hunting season


A new Illinois law allows all hunters to use crossbows during archery seasons.

Governor Bruce Rauner signed recently signed a bill that now makes it legal to use crossbows.

The law amends the Illinois Wildlife Code to repeal restrictions on crossbows.

Gamemasters Archery Manager Jim Anderson said, “A crossbow is basically utilized by more for people who are handicapped or somebody that is not capable of pulling back a normal bow.”

Anderson also said, "Illinois already had it to where everybody after the second gun season and anybody 62 and older plus and or any handicap that was already into effect. This year just simply includes everybody."

Last year, Missouri signed a similar law increasing the demand for crossbows. And local retailers saw the benefits of those changes.

"Doubled our sales or better in crossbows last year just simply because the Missouri law. So this year is going to be even better for us,” said Anderson.

Illinois does not require a FOID card or special permit in order to own a crossbow. An archery tag and hunting license are the only legal requirements.

Archery season in Illinois begins October 1st and runs through January 14th of next year.

Archery season will be closed temporarily during Firearm Deer Season.

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