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Urban Deer Hunt Program

Mark Harbor

The 2013 Fairfield Bay Urban Deer Hunt season will come to an end on January 31. This past year, seven cities participated in Urban Deer Hunts. Due to the increased interest of several additional cities, the AGFC is starting next season’s planning process the march 1. If our city wishes to participate in the 2014 Urban Deer Hunt, we must make application by March 1. Your comments for the past hunt and future hunts are solicited. You may contact your city council or mayor’s office.

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission estimated in 2011 that Fairfield Bay had 142 deer per square mile, well above the optimum number of 42 deer per Ozark square mile. After the first hunt, the deer census indicated 130 deer per square mile, with a harvest of 264 deer. The last census in February 2013 indicated 138 deer per square mile after a harvest of 292 deer. We will conduct another census in February since the season comes to an end on January 31.

So far, there have only been 80 deer checked this season. The low number may be a combination of several factors. There was a good acorn crop and deer are learning to avoid hunters. During the first two seasons, there was a poor acorn crop so it was easy for hunters to be successful by baiting deer. Several hunters mis-reported the deer zone that their deer were harvested in. AGFC had several calls about deer being checked in to the surrounding deer zone and not to the Fairfield Bay urban deer zone. The deer zone checking was new to this season so there was confusion.

All stands and equipment should be removed as of January 31, 2014, when the season comes to an end. You may report stands remaining after the deadline to Mark Harbour, Deer Coordinator, by Facebook message to Fairfield Bay Deer Hunt, or call 501-551-1858.

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