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2024-2025 Arkansas Hunting Season New Dates & Rules

The Arkansas outdoor provides an exciting chance for experienced hunters to enjoy the thrill of the hunt. The season covers several game species, including bear, elk, turkey, and deer, with the possibility of changing the start and end dates and the bag limits dependent on the harvest’s success and other variables.

In mid- and southern state, there are six zones, giving avid hunters a variety of possibilities to indulge their love.

Arkansas Hunting Games & Schedule

Discover the start and end dates for each game species, discover the rules and bag limitations, comprehend the licensing requirements, and have access to useful resources.

Deer Season Arkansas 2024-2025

AGFC Deer Season is divided into many zones , each having its own dates. These include archery, muzzleloader, and modern gun hunts, with regional variations. Additionally, within a particular time period, dogs are allowed for deer hunt, and rules establish the minimum number of antler points for authorized bucks. August marks the start of the deer shooting, and the AGFC provides detailed information on licenses, permits, and related fees.


Early Buck Archery HuntSept. 7-9
Archery DeerSept. 28-Feb. 28
Alternative FirearmsOct. 19-27 and Dec. 14-16
 Oct. 19-27 and Dec. 21-23
 Oct. 19-27
Modern GunNov. 9-Dec. 1 and Dec. 26-28
 Nov. 9-Dec. 8 and Dec. 26-28
 Nov. 9-17 and Dec. 26-28
 Nov. 9-Dec. 15 and Dec. 26-28
 Nov. 9-Dec. 28
Youth Modern Gun DeerNov. 2-3 and Jan. 4-5

Bag Limit

Only antlerless deer may be taken in zones 1 through 9, with a bag limit of five and a maximum of two bucks permitted. Any antlered or antlerless deer may be harvested in Zone 10, with a maximum bag limit of three and a maximum of one buck permitted. Youth hunts bag limits to two, allowing up to one buck, and having no limitations on antlers.


Buffalo River Elk Festival (Public Land)June 28-29
Location of FestivalJasper

Core Elk Management Zone

All public and private lands in the counties of Boone, Carroll, Madison, Newton, and Searcy

  • Legal guns allow you to shoot elk outside the Core Elk Management Zone during the deer season.
  • Applications for Elk Permits are Accepted Now (May 1-June 1).


Hunting Type/ZonesDates
Archery (1 and 2)Sept. 18-Nov. 30
Alternative Firearms (1 and 2)Oct. 19-27
Special Youth Modern Gun Bear Hunt (1 and 2)Nov. 2-3
Modern Gun (3, 4, 5, and 5A)Nov. 9-30
Dec. 21-27

Bear Bag Limits

Bear ZoneStatewideArcheryMuzzleloaderModern Gun
1One bear, either sex400 bears50 bears50 bears
35 bears
425 bears
510 bears
5A5 bears

Note: To verify the harvest count, hunters must phone 833-345-0398 the evening before the hunt.


Private1-Jan – 31-Dec
Public Firearm1-Oct – 8-Jan
Public ArcheryNov. 1-Dec. 31


AR Alligator Management ZoneMethod 
Zone 1 and 3Public Land (Drawn Permit)Sept. 20-23, 2024
Zone 1 and 3Sept. 27-30, 2024
Zone 1, 2, and 3Private Land (Permit Only)Sept. 20-23, 2024
Zone 1, 2, and 3Sept. 27-30, 2024

Small Game

QuailNov. 1-Feb. 1
RabbitSept. 1-Feb. 28
SquirrelMay 15-Feb. 28


DatesDaily BagPossession
Zones 1 and 2: April 12-131 (jake allowed)2 (including 1 jake)
Zone 1: April 21-291 (no jake)
Zone 2: April 21-May 112 (no jakes)


FurbearerHunting Season DatesTrapping Season Dates
Badger, Spotted Skunk, WeaselClosed
Beaver, NutriaSept. 1, 2024 – March 31, 2025Nov. 9, 2024 – March 31, 2025
BobcatSept. 1, 2024 – Feb. 28, 2025, April 21 – May 11, 2025
CoyoteJan. 1, 2025 – Dec. 31, 2025Aug. 1, 2024 – March 31, 2025
Gray Fox, Red Fox, Muskrat, MinkSept. 1, 2024 – Feb. 28, 2025Nov. 9, 2024 – Feb. 28, 2025
Opossum, Raccoon, Striped SkunkYear-round
River OtterNov. 9, 2024 – Feb. 28, 2025

Migratory Bird

Before being permitted to shoot ducks, geese, doves, coots, woodcocks, snipe, rail, or gallinules, people who are 16 years of age or higher and desire to acquire a game pass from the Arkansas Game & Fish Commission must register with the Harvest Information Program (HIP). The HIP register is meant to allow the Commission to oversee and control these species’ shootings and ensure that morally and sustainably responsible game methods are used.

It is a requirement for obtaining a license that you register for HIP. You can do this in person at any Commission location or website. By encouraging ethical shooting methods that don’t damage the birds’ population, this rule aims to protect these species for future years. The Commission can sustain healthy populations of these species for leisure and biological reasons by tracing and watching shooting activities.

Bird SpeciesDates
Dove (Mourning, White-winged, Eurasian collared-dove)Sept. 7-Oct. 27, Dec. 8-Jan. 15
Virginia Rail and SoraSept. 14-Nov. 22
Common and Purple GallinuleSept. 1-Nov. 9
Wilson’s SnipeNov. 1-Feb. 15
WoodcockNov. 2-Dec. 16

Waterfowl Season

Special Early Teal SeasonSept. 15-30
Duck, Coot, and MerganserNov. 23-Dec. 2, Dec. 10-23, Dec. 27-Jan. 31
Special Youth Waterfowl HuntFeb. 8-9, 2025
Special Active Duty Military and Veteran HuntFeb. 9, 2025
White-fronted, Snow, Blue, and Ross’s GooseOct. 26-Nov. 3, Nov. 23-Dec. 2, Dec. 10-23, Dec. 27-Jan. 31
Canada GooseSept. 1-Oct. 15, Nov. 23-Dec. 2, Dec. 10-23, Dec. 27-Jan. 31
Light Goose Conservation OrderFeb. 1-7, Feb. 10-April 25

Arkansas Hunting Season Schedule and Date

Migratory Bird Regulations

  • Teal is permissible all day, but shooting for other species is only allowed an hour before sunrise until dusk.
  • Due to marshy areas, waterfowl shooting is prohibited in some Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs). The Dave Donaldson Black River and George H. Dunklin Jr. Bayou Meto WMAs have a noon departure time, while all other duck shooting areas have a 1:00 p.m. departure time.
  • Between November 1 and February 15, visitors are not permitted in designated regions of bird roosting places.
  • Ducks are restricted to six per day and 18 per week.
  • The daily weight limit for coots is 15, with a maximum of three times that amount permitted in custody at any given time.
  • Mergansers can be kept in captivity for up to three times as long as they are given up to five times daily.
  • For some species, bag and ownership restrictions have been implemented to guarantee ethical shooting methods and long-term population protection.

*** According to the laws, only those 15 years of age or younger, veterans, and current military people are permitted to shoot ducks, geese, coots, and mergansers. A guide of at least 21 must accompany anyone under 18 who has yet to finish a hunting education training. Supervisors cannot remove the called-in animals, including ducks, geese, coots, and mergansers.

These animals have the same firing opportunity and weight restrictions as the regular season and permitted on WMAs from 30 minutes before dawn until sundown. All shooters should take the time to become acquainted with these guidelines before going shooting because they must be aware of them. These laws have been created to ensure healthy and moral shooting practises and safeguard these species for future years.

Note: Please visit if you kill a migrating bird that has been banded.

Arkansas Hunting Seasons

License Fees

Hunting license prices vary by residence and type. Residents pay $25 for a license, while non-residents pay $300. A $1,000 lifetime sportsman’s license and $500 new lifetime license are available. Non-resident deer permits range from $75 to $225, depending on length and quantity of tags, giving state hunters several alternatives.

License TypesResidentNon Resident
Combination Sportsman’s (CS)$35.50
(Sportsman’s) (RS)$25.00
(Wildlife Conservation) (HNT)$10.50
General WMA Hunter Use Permit (WMP)Free
(Trapper’s Permit) (TP)Free$125.00
(Guide) (GLH)$25.00
(Special Guide) (GLS)$150.00
Deferred Hunter Education (DHE)Free
(Annual All Game) (NBG)$350.00
(5-Day All Game) (AG5)$180.00
(3-Day All Game) (AG3)$125.00
(1-Day All Game) (AG1)$55.00
(Annual Small Game) (NRH)$110.00
(5-Day Small Game) (SG5)$70.00
(Trapper’s Permit) (NFT)$125.00
(Guide) (GNH)$450.00
Waterfowl Stamp – (DSR)$7.00
Waterfowl Stamp – (DSN)$35.00
Non-(5-Day WMA Waterfowl Permit) (NW5)$30.50
Harvest Information Program Registration (HIP)Free
Federal Duck Stamp$25.00
65 Plus Lifetime (Application)$25.00
65 Plus Lifetime Combination (Application)$35.50
Nonexpiring Lifetime (and Fishing Sportsman’s Permit (Application)$1,000.00
(3-Year Disability (RDH) (Application)$25.00
Mobility Impairment Access Permit (Application)Free

Buy a License

• Toll Free phone 800-364-4263 (Mon.-Fri., 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.)

• Visit or download the AGFC mobile app.

AGFC new online hunting license system

AGFC new online hunting license systemDetails
Launching InitiativesThe New hunting mobile app and enhanced online license portal are being released by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission (AGFC).
Online Licensing PortalThe primary web page for buying licenses will resemble earlier online licensing systems, but with more streamlined user customizations. These adjustments include adjusting license listings in accordance with user location, age, and recent license purchases.
Language InclusivityThe new system intends to be more inclusive, and by the end of the year, both English and Spanish will be offered for the user interface.
Smartphone App RelaunchThe mobile app for AGFC will be updated and re-released to work better with modern devices. Hunters will be able to check on deer and turkeys without a mobile phone signal. Users must uninstall the previous app and install the new one from the Google Play Store or Apple App Store. To guarantee correct license information, the same account that was used on the website must be used.
Tag Activation and CheckingThe amount of tags per license that may be used during hunting seasons will be activated. Before their hunts, hunters may connect onto the app to confirm their tags. Even without a mobile service, the app's tag locations may be used to locate deer, bears, or turkeys. The data will be delivered as soon as the phone receives a data signal again. Verification is provided via the electronic tag evidence on the phone.
Convenience and Paper TagsAlthough paper tags may still be utilized until reaching mobile phone coverage, the app makes checking deer easier. With the help of the app, hunters can swiftly examine their deer and bring it home to enjoy.


Phone number:

  • 501-223-6300   
  • 800-364-4263 (toll-free)


  • 2 Natural Resources Drive, Little Rock, AR 72205



  • Hunters and their partners must cover at least 400 square inches of their upper body in hunter orange, chartreuse, or fiery camouflage.
  • In the CWD control zone, feeding any untamed creatures is forbidden.
  • As required, forage areas can be used.
  • Only muzzleloaders and arrows are permitted tools during the muzzleloader deer and bear seasons.

For complete regulations you may review the eregulations website

Frequently Asked Questions

When is Arkansas's deer season?

The season is split into zones with specified dates for archery, muzzleloader, private land antlerless-only modern gun hunts, special youth modern gun hunts, and modern gun hunts. All zones participate in archery from September 23, 2023, until February 29, 2024. Muzzleloader and recent gun seasons vary by zone, usually between October and December, with occasional December and January dates. Private land antlerless-only and special young modern rifle hunts also have zone-specific dates.

In Arkansas, is it legal to bait deer?

Baiting deer is location-specific. Hunters may utilize feeding plots and bait on private land outside the CWD Management Zone. Feeding plots, which attract deer year-round, may be planted with deer-friendly plants. In the CWD Management Zone, baiting and feeding deer are forbidden.

When does bow season start in Arkansas ?

The bow season starts on September 23, and lasts through February 29, in most zones. However, it is important to remember that different schedules could apply based on the state’s deer zone.

When does Arkansas' deer season end?

The deer season varies depending on the technique and zone. In all zones, the archery dates lasts from September 23, to February 29. In most zones, muzzleloader runs from October 21–29, and December 9–11. The modern gun season typically lasts from November 11 through the beginning of December, with certain zones having extra days in late December. On some occasions, there are also designated youth hunts and modern rifle hunts on private property exclusively.

What is Arkansas' deer harvest limit?

Hunters may take five deer every season, with two males. Muzzleloaders, contemporary guns, and bowhunting are permitted. The quantity of antlerless deer taken depends on the weapon. Modern weapons and muzzleloaders can take three antlerless deer, whereas archery can take five.

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2 thoughts on “2024-2025 Arkansas Hunting Season New Dates & Rules”

  1. I have a question. I m song research and was wonderin what th rules were for using dogs for hinting foxes in AR . Where could iind the history of it?
    Thank you I; advance for your help

    • • Raccoons, foxes, coyotes, and pen-raised quail may be temporarily held captive for dog training or authorized field trials by individuals or groups with the agreement of the AGFC head of wildlife management.

      • Participants in a pursuit for fun or dog training may only carry killing tools that are lawful to use at the time and location of the chase (if no legal season is available, no killing tools may be carried).

      • April 1–May 15 are restricted dates for using dogs to hunt wild animals for fun, with the following exceptions: From April 1 through May 15, hunting is permitted inside fox and coyote cages, during authorized field tests, and nighttime chasing (from 60 minutes after sunset to 60 minutes before dawn).

      • When dogs are not allowed during a firearms deer season, it is forbidden to chase coyotes and foxes for fun.

      • Dogs may not be utilized to pursue animals during the springtime juvenile turkey hunt from 60 minutes before dawn to 60 minutes after dusk.

      • Only in deer zones where dogs are permitted to be used for deer hunting during the current rifle deer seasons may dogs be used to pursue deer for training reasons from 30 minutes before dawn to 30 minutes after sunset from October 1 through December 31.

      *Please confirm the above on AGFC website before pursuing.


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