As Arkansans make their way to deer stands across the state, it is important to take time and reflect on the role that safe and legal hunting plays in the conservation of Arkansas’ natural resources. According to Arkansas law, all hunters are required to carry a valid Arkansas hunting license while hunting and must check all harvested deer within 12 hours.
“With modern rifle sportsmen joining their bow hunting brethren in the woods, it is important to remind Arkansans to safely and legally enjoy our family traditions of hunting,” said Attorney General Leslie Rutledge.
“I am deeply grateful for the members of the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service who are committed to preserving The Natural State and ensuring our safety while we enjoy the great outdoors,” she added.
Rutledge urges hunters to follow all regulations and to use the guidebooks and other resources provided by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission (AGFC).
Arkansas hunters 16 years or older are required to purchase a hunting license. A license can be purchased online through the AGFC smartphone app, agfc.com, or over the phone at (501) 223-6300, at participating sporting goods stores, nature centers and at AGFC offices.
Arkansas hunters can carry a digital copy of their hunting license using the AGFC smartphone app. The digital copy also may be carried on their phone as a screenshot of the license image or as an image saved in their phones files. They may also carry their license as a paper copy or even a reloadable plastic card to show proof of purchase.
Arkansas hunters are required to check harvested deer within 12 hours, either by the AGFC app, agfc.com, or by phone at (877) 731-5627.
Anyone born after 1968 must complete a hunter education course to hunt in Arkansas, which can be completed via instructor or online. Children under 16 may hunt without hunter education as long as they are under the direct supervision of someone who is 21 years or older.
Every year 500 hunters die in tree stand related accidents, and 6,000 are injured according to the International Hunter Education Association. Inspect stands each year for defects and always wear a harness when able.
When required by law, Arkansas hunters must wear hunter orange. Please consider wearing it, even when not required.
Remember firearm safety: (1) Keep the gun pointed in a safe direction, (2) treat every gun as if it were loaded, (3) know the target and what is beyond it before firing a shot, and (4) keep fingers outside of the trigger guard until ready to shoot.
Consider having harvested deer tested for Chronic Wasting Disease at a free drop-off site in the county. This will enable AGFC to ensure the health and safety of Arkansas’ deer population for generations to come.