The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission used its emergency powers last week to set the early season migratory bird dates. The commission set the season dates last week to prevent calling a special meeting in early August.
The commission plans to use the same powers again at its August meeting to set the late migratory bird season dates. The emergency arose after it was learned that the late season migratory bird selections would not be available from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service until after July's monthly meeting. That delay would not give the AGFC time to allow for the 30-day comment period required by law.
The early season migratory bird season selections are due to the USFWS by Aug. 1 and the late migratory bird season by Sept. 1.
Early migratory bird season dates:
Mourning and Eurasian Collared Doves: Sept. 4-26, Oct. 9-24 and Dec. 20-Jan. 9, 2005. Daily bag limit will remain at 15, with possession limit 30. Doves are migratory game birds, so federal rules of shotguns plugged to hold no more than three shells are in effect. State and federal migratory waterfowl hunting stamps (duck stamps) are not required, but HIP registration is needed. There is no daily or possession limits on the Eurasian collared dove.
Virginia and sora rail: Sept. 1-Nov. 9. Daily bag limit 25; possession limit 25.
Common moorhen and purple gallinule: Sept. 1-Nov. 9. Daily bag limit 15; possession limit 30.
Snipe: Nov. 6-Feb. 20. Daily bag limit eight; possession limit 16.
Woodcock: Nov. 6-Dec. 5 and Dec. 25-Jan. 8. Daily bag limit three; possession limit six.
Teal hunting dates will be Sept. 18-26 with a daily bag limit of four of the small ducks and a possession limit of eight.
Shooting hours will again be one-half hour before sunrise until sunset for all species except teal. Teal hunting may begin at sunrise and continue until sunset.
In other business the commission renamed the Bois D'Arc Wildlife Management Area and Bois D'Arc Lake in honor of former commissioner Lester Sitzes of Hope. The area will now be called Lester Sitzes III/Bois D'Arc WMA.