If hunters want to harvest a doe with a gun next November in nearly half of Arkansas, they have to take some action in June.
The process begins by applying for a free zone doe quota permit. Without the permit, hunting will be for bucks only during the muzzle-loader and modern gun deer seasons in Deer Zones 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 10 and 11. This is roughly the Ozark, Ouachita and Arkansas River Valley sections of the state. The permits are also required for doe hunting for five wildlife management areas within these zones. They are also needed for the Christmas holiday modern gun deer hunt Dec. 26-28 in these zones and WMAs.
According to AGFC deer biologist Cory Gray, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission adjusts its deer hunting regulations each year to help improve and maintain deer populations throughout the state. "In the Ozarks, Ouachitas and Arkansas River Valley, the deer herd is primarily in a rebuilding state. This reduction in the doe harvest will allow additional females in the population to be protected. In areas such as the Delta and Gulf Coastal Plain regions, the deer population is stable to increasing and can sustain a moderate doe harvest. By taking these additional steps in deer management, the number of bucks and does should come closer to reaching a desired balance," Gray explained.
Applications can be obtained at www.agfc.com, from any AGFC license dealer in Arkansas and from any AGFC office in the state.
Youth hunters, meaning those under 16 years old, will not receive preference in the zone quota doe permit selection process this year.
The zone doe quotas for the 2004-2005 deer season are: Zone 1 - 820; Zone 2 - 370; Zone 3 - 1,890; Zone 6 - 615; Zone 7 - 300; Zone 8 - 640; Zone 10 - 830; Zone 11 - 1,150; Blue Mountain WMA - 20; Caney Creek WMA - 20; Muddy Creek WMA - 60; Sylamore WMA - 100 and Winona WMA - 60.The applications can be submitted any time during June, with the deadline June 30. Archery hunters do not have to have a zone quota doe permit except if they want to harvest a doe during a muzzle-loader or modern gun season.