sets 2015-16 deer seasons
Gaston, Outdoor Hall of Fame member, dies at
LAKEVIEW – Jim Gaston, a giant in Arkansas
outdoor recreation and tourism, died recently
at the age of 73.
He went to work at Gaston’s White River
Resort when his father bought the business in
1958. It had six cottages and six boat slips.
He built the resort into a property consisting
of 400 acres, two miles of river frontage, 79
cottages, a 125-seat conference center, a
restaurant, a private club, a 3,200-feet
airstrip and with a seasonal staff of 75 to
Gaston was an inductee into the Arkansas
Outdoor Hall of Fame, commissioner emeritus of
the Arkansas Parks, Travel and Recreation
Commission and president of the Arkansas
Tourism Development Council.
Arkansans win elk permit permits at Jasper drawing
Moore, former Game and Fish commissioner, dies
TEXARKANA – Henry Moore III, a former member
of the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, died
recently at the age of 82.
Moore was a lifetime sportsman and was
appointed to the Commission in 1975 by
Governor David Pryor. He served until 1982. He
was on the boards of directors of State First
National Bank in Texarkana, People's Bank of
Lewisville and Buhrman Pharr Hardware in
Texarkana. He was the founder and president of
Holly Mound Land Company and Hunting Club.
The Henry Moore Waterfowl Rest Area on Sulphur
River Wildlife Management Area in Miller
County is named for him.
JASPER – Twenty-nine Arkansans are wearing broad smiles these
days. They are winners of 2015 public land elk hunting permits.
Their names were drawn from several thousand applications during
the Buffalo River Elk Festival in Jasper. The drawing was from a
squirrel cage with youngsters picked from the crowd doing the
drawings. Both the applications and the permits were free.
This fall will be the 18th year of elk hunting in Arkansas. Three
more permits will be given in fundraising auctions, two of these
for youths. The hunt dates are Oct. 5-9 and Nov. 9-13 with youth
hunters in action the Saturday and Sunday before these dates.
Public land permit holders are required to attend an orientation
on Saturday, Sept. 26, at 1 p.m. at Carroll County Electric Co-op
in Jasper. Private land elk hunting with permits issued through
landowners will be Nov. 9-13 in Newton, Boone, Searcy, Madison and
Hunters are allowed to choose their weapons from archery,
including crossbows, muzzleloaders, modern rifles, modern shotguns
and handguns. Minimum specifications are set for these weapons. In
the past 17 years, virtually all elk hunters have used modern
The public land hunting is on Buffalo National River, Gene Rush
Wildlife Management Area and Bearcat Hollow Wildlife Management
Area. Hunters are assigned to specific zones within these public
The 2015 elk permit winners:
Zone 1, either sex: Shane Murphy, Perryville
Zone 3, antlerless: Leslie Williams, Brinkley
Zone 3, antlerless: Bob Lanius, Camden
Zone 1, antlerless: Derek Gellerman, Jasper
Zone 4, antlerless: David Keels, Yellville
Zone 1, either sex: Olivia McClelland, Enola
Zone 1, antler less: Steven Miller, Searcy
Zone 1, antler less: Joseph Crouch, Marion
Zone 2, youth either sex: Evan Ridenhour, Waldron
Zone 2, either sex: Ronna Rodman, Beebe
Zone 2, antlerless: Dustyn Loy, Perryville
Zone 2, antlerless: Matthew Gauger, Gamaliel
Zone 2, antlerless: Erica Starkey, Greenbrier
Zone 2, antlerless: James Chambers, Nashville
Zone 2, antlerless: Adam Reid, Amity
Zone 3, youth either sex: Ava Clark, El Dorado
Zone 3, either sex: John Rye, Lonoke
Zone 3, antlerless: Zackery Yancey, Peach Orchard
Zone 3, antlerless: Christopher Gage, White Hall
Zone 3, antlerless: Charles White, Hope
Zone 3, antlerless: Sam Philip, Centerton
Zone 3, antlerless: Jon Shelton, Jonesboro
Zone 4, either sex: Phillip Payne, Norfork
Zone 4, either sex: Michael Jaco, Vilonia
Zone 4, antlerless: Larry Gann, Hot Springs
Zone 4, antlerless: Larry England, Bentonville
Zone 4, antlerless: Jesse McMahill, Wideman
Zone 4, antlerless: William James, Benton
Zone 4, antlerless: Michael Cole, Cave City
LITTLE ROCK – The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission set the
state’s deer hunting seasons last week, with modern gun deer season
opening Nov. 14, archery season opening Sept. 26, and muzzleloader
season opening Oct. 17. The deer season dates are part of the 2015-16
general hunting regulations approved during the Commission’s monthly
Season dates for the 2015-16 deer hunting season:
All zones: Sept. 26-Feb. 29, 2016.
Modern Gun -
Zones 1, 1A, 2, 3, 6, 6A, 7, 8, 8A, 10 and 11: Nov. 14-Dec. 6.
Zone 4: Nov. 14-15. Zone 5: Nov. 14-15 and Nov. 21-22.
Zones 4A, 5A, 14 and 15: Nov. 14-Dec. 13.
Zones 4B and 5B: Nov. 14-22.
Zones 9, 12 and 13: Nov. 14-Dec. 20.
Zone 16, 16A and 17: Nov. 14-Dec. 25.
Zones 1, 1A, 2, 3, 6, 6A, 7, 8, 8A, 10 and 11: Oct. 17-25 and Dec.
Zones 4A, 5A, 14 and 15: Oct. 17-25 and Dec. 19-21
Zones 9, 12, 13, 16, 16A and 17: Oct. 17-25 and Dec. 29-31.
Zones 4, 4B, 5 and 5B: Closed.
The statewide Christmas holiday modern gun deer hunt is Dec. 26-28.
Youth modern gun deer hunts will be held Nov. 7-8 and Jan. 2-3, 2016.
A private land antlerless-only modern gun deer hunt in zones 1, 1A, 2,
3, 6, 6A, 8, 8A, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 16A and 17 will be held
The 2016-17 deer season opening dates will be:
Deer (special youth modern gun): Nov. 5, 2016 and Jan. 7, 2017
Deer (archery): Sept. 24, 2016
Deer (muzzleloader): Oct. 15, 2016
Deer (private land antlerless only modern gun): Oct. 29, 2016
Deer (modern gun): Nov. 12, 2016
The Commission also approved 2016 turkey season dates:
Zones 1, 2, 3, 4B, 5, 5B, 6, 7, 7A, 8, 9, 10 and 17: April 16-May 1,
Zones 4, 4A, 5A and 9A: April 16-24, 2016.
Zone 1A: Closed.
DISEASE FOUND IN MISSOURI
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation reported
11 new cases of chronic wasting disease in deer harvested in Macon,
Adair and Cole counties during the 2014-15 deer hunting season.
None of the dreaded disease has been found in Arkansas’s deer herd at
A buck harvested near Centertown in Cole County (Jefferson City) was the
first case of the fatal disease outside a six-county CWD containment
zone of Adair, Chariton, Linn, Macon, Randolph and Sullivan counties
(all in northeastern Missouri). Previous cases were in Macon, Linn and
The new cases bring the total number of Missouri free-ranging deer that
have tested positive to 24 since the disease was found in 2010 at a
private hunting preserve in Linn County. CWD has been found in 11
captive deer in Macon and Linn counties.
“We will provide an update of final results once all testing has been
completed for the season,” said Jason Sumners, MDC deer biologist.
“We will continue to monitor the spread of the disease through more
CWD testing this coming fall and winter. We are also updating our
efforts to help contain the spread of the disease and will be working
out the details.”
Cory Gray, deer program coordinator for the Arkansas Game and Fish
Commission, said, “Some people may not understand why we have strict
regulations concerning the importation of live cervids and certain parts
of carcasses into Arkansas from other states, but our intent is to
maintain a healthy, disease free deer herd,” Gray said. “We are
getting a great deal of cooperation from hunters in our campaign to keep
out CWD. Biologists and hunters have a common interest – a healthy,
productive, sustainable deer herd,” he added.
CWD causes the degeneration of the brain in members of the deer family;
it has no known cure.
National survey shows
Arkansas deer rankings improving
Deer in Arkansas are on the increase in terms of numbers and hunter
success, according to a national survey by Quality Deer Management
Arkansas is moving up in comparison to other states, the survey also shows.
A significant shift in Arkansas deer hunting has been the achievement of a
virtual 50-50 ratio between bucks and does checked by hunters. This has put
the state among the top states in the nation in this regard.
The amount of antlerless deer, does and button bucks, killed in Arkansas
rose during the 2012-13 and 2013-14 hunting seasons in contrast to a slight
decline nationwide. In the 2013-14 season, Arkansas hunters checked 122,067
This was tops in the nation in percentage of increase over the last decade.
Arkansas hunters checked 187 percent more antlerless deer than 10 years
previously. The Arkansas increase was far ahead of any other state. Rhode
Island was second with a 96 percent increase in antlerless harvest.
Arkansas ranks third in the nation in age of antlerless deer checked by
hunters, according to the QDMA survey. In the 2013-2014 season, 48 percent
of Arkansas’s antlerless deer harvested were 3 1/2 years or older, showing
an overall trend toward more mature deer. Only Oklahoma and Texas ranked
higher in age of antlerless deer.
Arkansas was second in the nation in age of bucks checked by hunters in
2013-14. Bucks 3 1/2 years or older accounted for 67 percent of the buck
harvest. Only Louisiana was ahead of Arkansas in this statistic.
“Let the deer get some age on them” has been an objective of the
Arkansas Game and Fish commission and many deer clubs and hunters since
1998. Since then, male deer had to have at least three points on one side of
their antlers before being legal to take, and the age structure of the
entire harvest began to shift.
Arkansas deer hunters continue to take nearly three-quarters of their deer
with modern firearms – rifles and shotguns. These amounted to 74 percent
of checked deer. Muzzleloaders took 14 percent of Arkansas deer, and archery
(including crossbows) took 9 percent. “Other” or unknown methods
accounted for 3 percent.
QDMA asked Arkansas to rank the impacts of disease, predation, bad
legislation, high deer density, low deer density, too few deer-focused staff
members and poaching on its management efforts. Disease, high deer density
and too few deer-focused staff members were listed as problems in the state.
Poaching, meaning illegal hunting, was listed as a moderate problem in
Arkansas. Predation and low density in some areas were listed as minor
Arkansas ranks near the middle of states on the issue of minimum fines for
poaching. The minimum in Arkansas ranges from $300 to $600, but jail time and
restitution are not penalties as they are in a few other states.
BIG BUCK CLASSIC CONTEST RESULTS
TOP 10 OVERALL
207 7/8 non-typical Prairie County
2. Leonard Rohrscheib 181 2/8
3. Shadow Doane
4. Kent Cromier
St. Francis County
6. Bradley Creekmore 170 0/8
190 7/8 non-typical Benton County
9. Corbet Passmore
St. Francis County
TOP MODERN GUN
Carlisle Prairie County
Gentry Benton County
Marvell Phillips County
4. Thomas Hussman 186
3/8 Rose Bud
Marshall Searcy County
1. Leonard Rohrscheib 181
2. Shadow Doane
172 3/8 Palestine
3. Kent Cromier
171 7/8 Alexander Arkansas
Widener St. Francis County
184 6/8 Beedeville Woodruff
2/8 Jonesboro Fulton County
151 0/8 White Hall Jefferson
4. Jeff Roaf
141 6/8 N Little Rock Monroe County
5. Terry Kemp
Millwood Phillips County
164 3/8 Melbourne Fulton County
2. Chad Stormes
160 4/8 Knobel
3. Kaelin Richesin
158 3/8 Van Buren Crawford County
4. Van Avery Meeler
149 0/8 Stamps
145 6/8 Jesseville Garland
1. Cole Vandeman
165 3/8 Siloam Springs Benton County
161 6/8 Murfreesboro Hempstead County
4. Brandon Baioni
Sherwood Crittenden County
TOP CROSSBOW KILLS
Batesville Lee County
Batesville Independence County
0/8 Hot Springs Hot Spring
140 4/8 Jonesboro
2. Audrey Loewer
3. Laura McFarlin
151 4/8 Griffithville
Watson Desha County
Maumelle Arkansas County
160 2/8 Ola
1. Bradley Creekmore
170 0/8 Mena
151 1/8 West Memphis Monroe County
138 1/8 Hagarville