First day in Arkansas

Discussion in 'Big Game' started by Irish Setter, Nov 12, 2004.

  1. Irish Setter

    Irish Setter Well-Known Member

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    Tomorrow is the first day of modern gun deer season in Arkansas, and it is expected that there will be 300,000 hunters in the woods. Actually I figure about a third of them will be at the coffee shop talking about the big one that they missed last year, and another third will be driving around on the gravel roads hoping that a buck will jump in the back of their trucks. I have my stand all set up, my clothes airing out on the deck, and my Win. 243 all set to go. The temp. is supposed to be in the 30's during the night...it should be perfect for a morning in the woods.
     
  2. capt9992002

    capt9992002 Active Member

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    Irish,

    I will be one of those in my stand at 5:30am and won't leave until 5ish pm...... both Sat and Sun..... I hope the weather holds like this today and tonight with the clouds staying around until after noon tomorrow... but I don't think we'll be THAT lucky. Be sure you have your silkies ready... it's gonna be a cool one! But we NEED A GOOD FROST!!!!

    Where are you hunting? I'll be in Zone 8 on my farm in Conway County. If I do well there, next hunt will be in Fulton County on my fiance's farm.

    Good luck, Irish!!
     

  3. huntswithdogs

    huntswithdogs Moderator

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    I wish ya'll would send some cooler weather up to Va. It's going to be in the mid 50's tomorrow. Maybe some big ole mossy horn will be headed for his thicket to stay cool and I can get there ahead of him. I probably just bust a doe or two,unless he's BIG. Ya'll be real careful and I'll let ya know what happens.

    HWD[/img]
     
  4. luv2safari

    luv2safari Moderator

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    Where in AK would someone hunt who has no connections as to private property to hunt? Are there farms that would let someone who asks in to hunt their land, or are things pretty well closed up?

    With 300,000 hunters it seems that a place to hunt is a bit hard to come by, but I've never been there. I'd like to hunt AK some day. :p
     
  5. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    Capt. I'm in Zone 11 near Mena.

    Luv2...there are thousands of acres of public land in Arkansas that anyone can hunt on. In western Ark. most of it is forest.

    Sorry, I forgot to sign in. Irish Setter
     
  6. capt9992002

    capt9992002 Active Member

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    luv2,

    Go to http://www.agfc.state.ar.us/pdf/04-05_h ... debook.pdf and download the hunting handbook. It shows all the G&F management areas and other public lands. For deer and the like, usually there is a permit draw. You can look up the details. I've hunted a few of these. In fact, my sister's land joins one WMA and my farm is "just over the hill" from it. By the way... AR is Arkansas... AK is Alaska....(Dad was with Postal Service.... one of his peeves... sorry....)

    My hunt was very dry this weekend. I did see my "family" of does - One with this year's fawn, one with this year's and last year's. Five total. They looked healthy. Only saw one buck. He was about 350 yards from me and 100 or so from my hunting companion. I scoped the buck as he walked out and waited for Will to drop him. I had just about given up and decided to take a shot (too long, but hey....) when I saw the deer fold up in my sights. Then I heard the shot. Will dropped him like a hot potato with his Savage .270 130 gr silver tip. (Werewolf ammo.... LOL) Nice six-point about 4-5 years old with good body weight and fat.

    My sister's store is a check station and she takes pictures of all the deer. The kill is down this year and I noticed the racks are a little puny. Only saw one nice 8-point rack. The rest were very tight with not much mass. Not sure what's going on, but sounds like we need some better management around there.

    Next week I'm either busting ducks or going to a different spot for deer. Hopefully, the prospects will be a little better there. If the ducks are not here and the deer are a bust, my fly rod my get some action. Trout are a guarantee..... LOL
     
  7. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    Capt. You are right about the small size. The only buck I saw (Sunday) was a four point, and it came within 12 steps of me. I was sorely tempted to squeeze one off, but I had to go with the law. Fortunately, the squirrel prospects look much better.
     
  8. grizzly57

    grizzly57 New Member

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    re; first day in Ark. [small deer size]

    capt9992002, I'm not trying to be a jerk, but did you pull a bottom jawbone and get the deer aged? I am in Arkansas also and an AGFC biologist will age them for you and be glad to get the info on the age class being taken. I am just south of Searcy in White County but hunted in a club south of Pine Bluff for several years where we were required to weigh and pull a jawbone for ageing from every deer taken. It was an eye-opening experience for me. most people over estimate the weight and age greatly just from the look of the deer. my wife took a nice 8 point behind our house. everyone who saw the deer talked about how dark and old the deer was. I pulled a jawbone and had it aged; he was 2 and a half. as for small deer, I saw lots of spikes and forked horns of all different sizes but they will be shooters in a year or two. now that deer season is over it is now time to coyote hunt. Best of luck!!!
     
  9. capt9992002

    capt9992002 Active Member

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    Griz,

    No, I didn't send the jawbone or tooth in since it was not my deer.

    The size and fat comment was based on comparison to other deer taken over the past 30 odd years within a 1/4 mile of where this one was taken. As for aging, the jaw bone or single tooth method of determining is quite accurate, you can get a close approximation by (1.) knowing the deer in the area (Will lives 1/4 mile from the stand, I have over 40 years of scouting on the 250 acres under my belt) and (2.) looking at the teeth (an old cattleman's trick for aging cattle.) Actually, Will and I both "knew" this deer as he was born of a doe that has lived there for years and born 1-2 fawns every year.

    Yeah, I've seen deer that "looked" old and turned out to be 2-3 years and I've seen deer that I almost let pass because I thought they were too young, but a nice rack, and they turned out to be very mature deer. (I have a very close friend who use to be with AGFC and got me aging deer a long time ago.)

    Kind of interesting if you've ever had to check in a deer on a WMA where the biologist is doing a study and watch them pick ticks, pull teeth, cut hair, take blood samples, etc. They wanted all the check stations to pull a tooth a couple of years ago, but so many of the small country stores (like my sister) told them they didn't have time and didn't get paid enough (they get ZERO $$ for being a check station) so G&F backed off. I'd like to see the biologists and others hang around the check stations the first week of gun season and take some samples. I think it would improve the herd in Arkansas even more.