Arkansas hunting regulations

Arkansas Hunting Regulations

Arkansas has a rich hunting history and great opportunities for residents and non-residents. The licensing system is straightforward and very affordable for residents with reasonable fees for out of staters. Deer are the primary big game target but elk, bear and alligator are present. Small game is abundant and popular. Birds and feral hogs can also keep you busy during open seasons.

Arkansas Hunting License Costs

Resident:

  • Combination Sportsman – $35.50
  • Sportsman – $25
  • Wildlife Conservation License – $10.50
  • Waterfowl Stamp – $7
  • Non-expiring lifetime hunting and fishing – $1,000
  • 65+ Lifetime Combo – $35.50

Non-resident:

  • Annual All Game Hunting – $350
  • 5-day All Game – $180
  • 3-day All Game – $125
  • 1-day All Game – $55
  • Small Game Annual – $110
  • 5-day Small Game – $70
  • Non-resident trapper – $125
  • Waterfowl Stamp – $35

Elk Application Dates and Draw Notes

June 1 – Public Land application deadline, only residents with a lifetime license or resident Sportsman hunting license can apply. A $5 application fee is required. Hunts are limited to designated public areas. In 2017 these included the Buffalo National River, Gene Rush WMA, Richland Valley Sonny Varnell Elk Conservation Area and the Bearcat Hollow WMA. 29 total permits were drawn in 2017 but numbers are liable to increase base on herd health in future years.

July 15 – Private land application deadline, Applications must be sent by mail with a $35 app fee. Resident and nonresidents can apply if they own land within the private lands elk zone. Permit numbers are determined based on acreage, only one application per property. Must have a hunting license to apply.

Arkansas Hunting Season Dates and Limits

Quail – Nov 1 – Feb 4, 6 daily and 12 in possession

Rabbit – Sept 1 – Feb 28, 8 daily and 16 in possession

Squirrel – May 15 – Feb 28 following year

Gray fox, red fox, mink, striped skunk – Sept 1 – Feb 28, 2 per day limit. No limit on striped skink

Opossum – Sept 1 – Feb 28, 2 per day

Bobcat – Sept 1 – Feb 28, 2 per day

Coyote – July 1 – Feb 28, no bag limit

River Otter – Nov 11 – Feb 28, 2 per day

Elk ┬á– Oct 2-6 and Oct 30-Nov 3 (different youth dates apply)

Alligator – By permit only. Apply between June 15-30.

Bear:

  • Archery in zones 1 and 2 – Sept 23 – Nov 30
  • Muzzleloader in zones 1 and 2 – Oct 21-29
  • Modern gun zones 1 and 2 – Nov 11-30
  • Modern gun zone 5 – Nov 25 – Dec 3
  • Modern Gun zone 5A – Nov 18 – Dec 3

Deer:

  • Archery – Opens Sept 22, 2018
  • Muzzleloader – Opens Oct 20, 2018
  • Modern Gun – Opens Nov 10, 2018

Arkansas Deer Hunting Notes

The state is divided into 25 different zones and each has specific variations on the regulations. The seasons also differ in some of the zones. The archery season is very liberal, typically running through February 28 with a multiple deer bag limit in each zone. 4-5 deer limits are not uncommon and in some units you can take multiple bucks. Muzzleloader runs over a week in October and several rifle seasons are common in the different areas.

Return to Hunting Regulations for all states.