Arkansas Game and Fish Commission Director Scott Henderson will be returning to a full-time work schedule. Henderson had been working on a part-time basis since late July 2008 due to an illness.
Commission chairman Freddie Black made the announcement at last week's monthly meeting of the AGFC.
During the short meeting, commissioners were provided a harvest report on the state's recent elk season.
Cory Gray, the AGFC's new elk biologist, reported that a total of 16 elk were harvested during the state's three seasons.
Gray replaces the retiring Mike Cartwright and will be in charge of the AGFC's elk program.
Before taking over the elk program, Gray was responsible for Arkansas's deer program.
Gray highlighted the fact that the new January private lands hunt only produced one bull elk during the five-day season. "I thought the quota would be met pretty quickly and the hunt would be finished in a few days, but that's not the way it turned out. We did give hunters in that zone the chance to hunt elk," he said.
During the September hunt, three elk were taken by hunters. In December, hunters took 12 elk.
The largest bull harvested weighed in at a dressed weight of 600 pounds.
The largest cow weighed a live weight of 572 pounds and the largest antlers were a 6x7. Since the modern Arkansas elk hunt began in 1998, a total of 254 elk have been taken by hunters.
In other business, the commission:
* Honored Arkansas Outdoor Hall of Fame member Gene Denton of Clarksville for his work on turkey habitat in the state.
On behalf of the National Wild Turkey Federation, former AGFC commissioner Jim Hinkle presented a bronze statue to the Arkansas Game and Fish Foundation in honor of Denton.
* Honored wildlife officer Michael Gray with the Shikar-Safari Wildlife Officer of the Year award.
Gray is based in Mansfield and patrols west central Arkansas.
Award winners are selected on the basis of their professional relationships with hunters, anglers and landowners in their districts, their job performance and dedication to the wildlife law enforcement profession and participation in activities outside of daily enforcement work.
* Honored David and Terri Stalnaker of Little Rock for their fishing lure donation that is on display in the Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center in Little Rock.