ARKANSAS

Deer Forecast 2003

Outdoor Life Online Editor

The wildlife department is reducing deer harvest (from 185,000 to 130,000 over the last few years), believing liberal doe seasons resulted in overkill, primarily in the mountains. The state has gone from a three-doe season bag limit to a one-doe bag this year. With about 800,000 animals, Arkansas is still a great deer state, and the southern region is still known as the state's "whitetail factory." The White River National Wildlife Refuge in Desha, Monroe and Phillips counties, and the 8,173-acre Trusten Holder WMA in Desha and Arkansas counties are outstanding bets for deer hunting this fall. Recommended areas include the 1.2 million-acre Ozark National Forest, the 100,000-acre Buffalo National River and smaller WMAs like Gene Rush, Hobbs and Madison County. Contact: Arkansas Game and Fish Commission (800-364-4263; www.agfc.com).

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