Now it’s Huntin’ Weather!
Times Outdoor Columnist After a very brief autumn, winter has arrived with a vengeance bringing very cold temperatures and stiff winds. This is the kind of weather that makes a buck start into rut and ducks begin their migration from Canada to the duck holes of Arkansas. The modern gun season started last Saturday in most of the Arkansas zones and continue from only a few days until the last part of December.
That depends on the zone, so carefully read the free 2019-20 Hunting Guidebook. There have been several reports of the kids taking some very nice deer in the special youth modern gun hunt. The kids have 2days of hunting and often show up the adults with great trophies. That first deer is a trophy no matter if it has horns or not.
This first week of the regular gun season has been very cold and if there was not heater in the deer stand it was miserable. That is until the deer started to show up, then it was worth the cold and long wait. A climbing stand in the 20’s with a stiff wind tests even the die hard deer hunter.
The deer appear to have started into the rut that will last for 2-3 weeks, and is usually about this time of year, or later if the weather has been warm. Depending on the zone, buck or doe may be taken. The AGFC is encouraging the harvest of does. Years ago, that was almost a sin to take a doe. Even today, many “old timers” refuse to shot a doe. Those thoughts go back when the state killed less than 5000 deer a year and had a 7 day season.
Already this year more than 50,000 have be harvested and will probably exceed the 100,000 for the 5th year in a row. Read the book about tagging and calling in deer as soon as taken. The tag must be on the deer before it is moved.
You can tag by phone or e-mail. There are no check stations.
• Duck Season on the Horizon Duck season opens on Nov. 23. That is the Saturday before Thanksgiving.
This is the first of three segments of duck season.
Our best hunting starts about Christmas time and goes through the last Sunday of January 2020. Many local clubs already have their water and good flights of birds are being reported. We are due for a good year because last year was one of the worst in recent times. The problem was too much water in the river bottoms, warm weather, and a serious shortage of ducks. There have been some changes in the limits, so check the Waterfowl Guidebook. The most notable change is the reduction of pintails from two per day to only one, but with an increase of canvasbacks and black ducks to two.
Federal and state duck stamps are required along with a free HIP license.
• Slow Fishing The extreme weather has really slowed down the fishermen. Horseshoe had a few boats on Bonds’ ramp. These are diehard crappie fishermen and they are catching some. The fish have started to move into the bayous with small and medium sized crappie caught. The big ones are around the piers. The water is about a foot higher than normal and Bonds’pier is about a foot under water.
No reports from the other lakes.
Take the kids with you.
Be sure to dress warm, and a heater is almost a necessity. Hand warmers are a necessity and Walmart has sold out. Tractor Supply has a good stock with even better prices.
• Lookin’ for Nuts?
We have all heard the saying that “even a blind squirrel finds a nut,” but there is a much easier way to get some pecans for cooking pecan pies and just to snack on.
Nuts By The Pound is located on Highway 70, across from the airport, in Chad Rogers RCR Powersports business. Craig Treadwell has been buying and selling pecans since 2007. The hours are 9 a.m.
to 4 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, and will expand the hours later in the month. He buys and sells at market value. Right now the price is $1.75 a pound and the special is $2.00 a pound cracked.
He handles about 500,000 pounds of nuts on a normal year. Last year was awful for both pecans and ducks.
He buys both small and big nuts and the price depends on the quality of the pecan.
Give him a call at 870830-5095, and if your 4-wheeler or side by side is having problem, let Chad take a look at it. He takes care of Papa Duck’s. There is a big sign that says “buy and sell pecans.”
This is the time to get those trophies and Lakeside Taxidermy wants to mount them at reasonable prices, fast service, and you will be glad to show them off. Send pictures and stories so we can all share them. Papa Duck will not tell where your “Honey Hole” is! This has the makings of a wonderful year to enjoy the outdoors.
Papa Duck Lakeside Taxidermy 870-732-0455 or 901482-3430 firstname.lastname@example.org