Spring turkey season is scheduled to open in Arkansas April 10, and if the record attendance at a recent Hunter Education class in Highland is any indication of interest, the gobblers in Sharp and surrounding counties may be in big trouble.
A record number of 89 children and adults turned out at Highland High School on March 27 for the day-long Hunter Education class sponsored by the North Central Arkansas Branch of the Quality Deer Management Association. This is believed to be the largest class ever to take the course at one time in either Sharp or Fulton Counties.
Of the 89 testing, 86 successfully passed the course.
Course instruction covered a variety of topics including: hunter ethics and responsibilities, firearm safety and marksmanship, survival skills, ATV safety, archery and tree stand safety and other outdoor related knowledge and skills.
Instructors for the 10-hour course were Steve Taylor and Roger Tate from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, along with volunteer instructors Phillip Pickett, Rob Simers and Mike Stanley. QDMA Branch president Rick Rickleman also spoke to the class and explained QDMAs goals and long-range plans for promoting a healthy, well-balanced deer herd in our area.
Among the sponsors of the class were: Price Chopper, The Gun & Bow Rack, A & Z Printing, Long's Dozing, Southern Pines Reality, Iberia Bank, Glamour Cuts, State Farm Insurance of Highland, Watson Dental Clinic, Hirsch Farm & Feed, Thayer Plant Food, Tri-County Farm and Ranch Supply. Food was provided by Pizza Pro of Price Chopper and McDonalds of Hardy.
The finale of the day was a drawing for a youth bow donated by Nathan Circle, owner of The Gun and Bow Rack, and Matthews Archery. The winner was Justin Hale of Hardy.
For more information about QDMA contact Rick Rickelman at 870-257-3611 or Nathan Circle at 870-847-5225.