University of Illinois Extension

How to Solve a Problem with Wildlife at Your Home

Trapping and Removal

By Illinois law, a property owner or tenant needs a Nuisance Animal Removal Permit to trap and remove most species of wildlife. To determine if you need a permit, go to the Do I Need a Permit? page. If a Nuisance Animal Removal Permit is necessary, you can request a permit from an Illinois Department of Natural Resources District Wildlife Biologist. The District Wildlife Biologist will provide guidance on appropriate trapping and disposal methods, but will not trap the animal for you. Property damage by wildlife or a threat to human health or safety by wildlife must be demonstrated before a permit will be issued. Animals that are trapped by a property owner or tenant must be released onto the property from which they were captured, relocated to another property, or humanely euthanized. If an animal is relocated, prior written permission must be obtained from the landowner of the property where the animal will be released. Animals may not be released in state, county, or municipal parks, nature preserves, or natural areas.

If you need assistance with trapping an animal, you may prefer to hire a Nuisance Wildlife Control Operator (NWCO) to trap and remove the animal for you. By state law, NWCOs must euthanize all skunks, and raccoons must be released on the same property where they were trapped or euthanized. For a list of NWCOs in your area, go to the Find a Wildlife Professional page.