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Elk harvest reaches record; herd growing

Elk harvest reaches record; herd growing

   LITTLE ROCK – A record 44 elk were harvested during the 2012 hunting seasons, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission biologist Wes Wright told Thursday’s monthly meeting of the Commission.

   In 2012, 20 bull elk and 24 antlerless elk were harvested during hunting seasons in September and October in territory near the Buffalo River. The previous record was 38.

   Since 1998, when elk hunting began in Arkansas, 376 have been harvested (195 bulls, 181 antlerless). Harvested elk are weighed, ages are estimated and blood samples are taken for disease tests. Elk also are tested for chronic wasting disease.

   Wright said a recent survey found at least 620 elk on public and private land, up from 453 counted during the previous survey.

   The Commission elected Commissioner Ron Duncan of Springdale vice chairman to fill the previously vacant position.

   In other business, the Commission:

Spiders can scare throughout winter

Spiders can scare throughout winter

Spiders are associated with Halloween, but the arachnids will most likely be seen throughout the winter in homes due to the warm summer we experienced. Often popping up after people bring holiday decorations or winter clothing out of storage, Terminix, the nation’s largest pest control company, has a few tips for prevention and protection to limit number of infestations and incidents of bites.

Why do spiders invade homes?

Like most pests, spiders are opportunistic and invade homes out of convenience. Human structures often provide a sheltered environment and can provide easy access to other insects. 

How do spiders get into homes?

Spiders can slip through very small exterior openings.

Record number of deer hunting permits available Oct. 11

Record number of deer hunting permits available Oct. 11

If you didn’t draw a deer permit for an Arkansas Game and Fish Commission wildlife management area hunt this year, there’s still a good chance to get the one you’re after. More than 6,000 unclaimed permits will be available beginning 8 a.m., Oct. 11, at the AGFC Little Rock headquarters and regional offices across the state.

“Typically, we have about 3,000 leftovers available,” said Ashley Bean, AGFC permit program coordinator. “This year, we had almost the same number of applicants, but they were focused only on a few hunts, leaving many unclaimed permits throughout the state.”

Some permits are even available for some of Arkansas’s most coveted wildlife management areas. There’s even permit available for the modern gun hunt at Freddie Black Choctaw Island Deer Research Area WMA, which normally takes about four years to draw. These high-demand permits are left because people who had enough preference points drew the permit, but did not pay.