published June 17, 2017 by David Faulk

AGFC Approves New Waterfowl Regulations

After much complaint from waterfowl hunters in Arkansas, the AGFC has decided to address the issue of overcrowding of waterfowl hunters on the state’s Waterfowl Management Areas.  According to surveys of Arkansas residents, they believe the number of nonresident hunters has gotten too high. According to license sales, 49,161 non-resident waterfowl stamps were purchased in the 2016-17 waterfowl season. The AGFC has voted after much resident support, to the tighten the regulations on nonresident waterfowl hunters.  The new regulations only affect these nonresident hunters on Arkansas Wildlife Management Areas.

The new regulations which include the removal of the Annual Nonresident Waterfowl WMA Permit. Now only a 5-day permit can be purchased by nonresidents who wish to hunt a WMA for waterfowl. In addition, the five-day permit is specific to a single WMA, which the hunter will choose at the time of purchase. Nonresidents are allowed to purchase six permits per waterfowl season.  The price of the nonresident wma permit has also increased from $25 to $30.50.

Through these regulations, the AGFC hopes to reduce overcrowding on WMAs during waterfowl season to improve hunter satisfaction, and the quality of the hunt. What are your opinions of the new regulations, and the overcrowding of waterfowl hunters? Leave us a comment below!

About the Author

David Faulk
Owner of Arkansas Outdoors Online. Christian. Outdoors enthusiast, with years of experience hunting and fishing across the Natural State. Mississippi State Wildlife Biology Graduate.


  1. Cody Evans

    Not enough, January in the woods on public land is gonna be worse than it was last year

  2. louis irby

    Now if you would get the mallards back to the west side of the state!

  3. Zach craig

    Tougher still. We let them hunt for 30 days still?? Hows that going to change things??

  4. Ronnie Allison

    Still not enough. I like the 6 five day license, but out of state hunters will pay A LOT more for their permits. I would like to see $50 or $75 per permit

  5. Price Holmes

    It may help with crowding on the State WMAs but the end result will be a flood of hunters into the Cache River Refuge and the other Federal Refuges that are already overrun/overcrowded.

  6. Dustin palmer

    Not enough like it has been said the cache an white will be over crowded in January

  7. Adam Ball

    What happened to supporting your hunting comrades and welcoming your brothers who hunt.

  8. Nick Roberts

    Make the out of state WMA license much more expensive, $500-1000, per season. Then make it where you don’t need the OOS license if you use a guide on private ground, or lease private ground. This will greatly reduce pressure on public lands, and allow guides and farmers to increase their profits. Then as business revenues go up so do tax revenues. Huge win for the AGFC and hunters of Arkansas.

  9. Gerald Mills

    Non resident WMA Permits need to be 50$ & limit the amount sold daily. Not a yearly limit.
    It makes no sense to limit Non residents to 30 days if they are all here at the same time. Which IS the case.
    These new regulations are a good start, but need a little change.
    The overcrowded times are Christmas to the 2nd week of January.
    The number of WMA permits sold is what needs to be regulated on a daily limit.
    Examples that I have personnelly seen.
    Bayou meto can’t handle 500 out of state hunters on the same day.
    Dagmar gator pond parking lot can’t handle 70 Non resident boat/trailer on the same day.

  10. Ann Odell

    I am definitely a Non Resident and Have purchased a license in Arkansas for the past two seasons. I won’t lie, I kind of like the idea of this since we usually only spend at max 2 weeks in Arkansas. It makes it a bit cheaper than buying the whole year. However, where we hunt doesn’t seem to be over crowded at all. We typically only see one or two other groups of hunters while out.

  11. Brent

    Maybe MS will jack up the nonresident license for all of the Arkansas turkey hunters that crowd our public land…

  12. Michael Joslin

    I wish MDWFP would do the same for turkey hunting. Maybe that would shy off all the owl hooters from Arkansas…??

  13. Mitch brown.

    Not enough. I personally think it should be $100/ 5 days Maybe even higher.

  14. Aaron Owens

    It may help early season but I agree late season on AGFC land will be worse because the non-residents will just wait until the birds get here. Restrictions should be just one permit per year for 5 days. Also the price is still too low.

  15. Jeff Stevens

    Non resident hunters should be treated the same as guiding on WMA’s,shouldn’t be aloud on pullover ground that the tax payers of our state has either donated or give to the so local people would have a place to hunt .

  16. Overkill; your “out of the WMA by noon” edict ended my annual contributions to the Arkansas DNR. I’m taking my talents and money elsewhere.

  17. Chris

    You really think raising it $5.50 is going to curb the problem? Pretty sure the overwhelming consensus was much higher pet permit.

  18. Kelly Jones

    Go to a lottery draw like Illinois. Put the blinds back in Big Lake and St. Francis and draw for them at the shops located at each WMA, there will be less drama and could provide more opportunities for everyone not just residents or non residents. I hunt both states and can honestly say Illinois has it together when it comes to this. Better hunting conditions and there is no 4am boat race. There were over 100 blinds at big lake at one time and it is fair for all involved. The money from licensing and stamps should be more than enough to cover said expenses for building the blinds and upkeep

    • Jim

      I agree with Kelly Jones. Bring the blinds back and have a drawing for them or put them up for lease! All g&fc wants is money will that will definitely bring in some money. I hate the arkansas game and fish commission. Needs to be taken out of the States hand and given to the federal government.

  19. marty

    Lol…you guys sure get bitter when someone else is killing the ducks!
    How can you make a decision without solid data?
    How many stamps sold is irrelevant. Why did you not quote exactly how many annual and 5 day licenses were sold?
    What is the % on NR hunters on the WMA’s?
    Is it a weekend only issue?
    To an unbiased observer, who has never hunted any WMA, itsounds like a few BIG money people got their way!

    • John Manning

      I have seen the numbers on 5 day and annual w.m.a permits sold. This crap effects like 4%. Not going to change nothing, most of the ones crying only hunt 4 or 5 times a year anyway. Anytime you restrict or take rights away from Hunters nothing ever good comes from it.

  20. Tom Yates

    Maybe a one time 5 day permit for non residents for state lands. If a non resident has a private lease then they could hunt the entire season on private only. The non resident waterfowl stamps should increase.

  21. Barry Wayne jackson

    This does nothing to help the local hunters. All this does is put more money in the AG&f bank! They will never do right!

  22. jonathan gosney

    Limit the permits to 4 weeks a year not 6

  23. Luke Walker

    Apparently they don’t teach economics in Arkansas. Do you people realize how much money the out of state hunters bring to your local economy? Licenses, hotels, food, gas, and gear from your state. It isn’t just out of state people who over crowd the WMAs and make hunting unpleasant. There are plenty of locals that think they own the land and will stop at nothing to run people off.

    • Josh bailey

      I agree. I am a resident and hunt Bayou Meto mostly. I have no issue with out of state hunters. It’s nice meeting new people and networking. It’s good for the economy as you mentioned as well. Overcrowding is mostly a weekend problem. During the week you don’t see but a fraction of the people. Biggest problem at Bayou Meto is the fact people have no common courtesy anymore. They’ll hunt right on top of you, sky bust birds you’re working, run up and down boat lanes all morning, do so much blind calling you’d think you were on main street listening to the world championships etc. that’s my main problem.

  24. Eric Garner

    This isn’t gonna do any good! They are still allowing them to purchase 6 permits per season this is bull crap, this is why I don’t duck hunt anymore!

  25. Jacob

    The problem now is they aren’t flooding the woods and what they are flooding is sections and not the whole woods. I say they get some fields and flood them for the public.

  26. Brandon

    The beaches are to crowed on the coast of AL. We need to limit the number of out of state folks we allow to come to the beach!

  27. John Boyd

    This makes me laugh. Half of you guys don’t know crap about how things were or how they should be.

    We hunted WMA’s for years when there was a 2 duck limit and no Duck Dynasty. We treated people with respect and took care of the land like it was ours.

    Basically two things happened, everyone started treating people bad, and the popularity of the sport went through the roof. EVERYBODY wants to be like Phil for the wrong reasons. They forgot to be ethical and more importantly, safe.

    I quit hunting for those reasons along with the fact that the AGFC forgot why they exist, which is not solely for revenue generation and growing the economy of the state.
    (The mission of AGFC is to wisely manage all the fish and wildlife resources of Arkansas while providing maximum enjoyment for the people.) As this states, they really are here to create an environment to allow friends and families to enjoy the outdoors. When you can’t take your kids for fear of them getting hurt or caught up in an argument, it’s time to find another way to spend your time. When it comes to duck hunting, they have failed.

    In case you don’t know, duck hunting is far more than just killing ducks. Out of state hunters as well as resident hunters have ruined what was once so beautiful. I feel sad that most of you haven’t experienced it that way.

  28. MJ

    All sounds good but what about the revenue these hunters generate for the local business owners much less the state? Sure doesn’t seem like a win-win-win solution.

  29. Joe murphy

    Will have little affect if any at all.

  30. Revenue will drop but at least the locals will be happy.

  31. Nick

    How about the state make more public hunting areas to accomidate the people from out of state that support all the local buisnesses while the locals go home every night and not spend a dime and hunt for nothing!!! Where will all these millions of dollars go for the extra permit charges? Put it back into the system and develop more hunting areas for us to hunt!!! Kentucky should ban all the deer and turkey hunters from out of state because they come in and lease up all of the land us locals have hunted for decades? No this is what happens when the state advertizes to get the revenue for the permit and license sales—more people come!!! You should ban any local that threatens or damages vehicals at these public grounds because they think they run the place!!! These areas are public areas that were more than likely partially paid for by federal funds or grants or DU funds that out of state hunters contributed to!

  32. Josh bailey

    Out of state hunters are not the problem. Out of state hunters bring in revenue for the local economy. It’s nice meeting out of state hunters and networking as well. I hunt Bayou Meto mostly and yes it gets crowded. But, the biggest problem is not that it’s crowded, it’s that people have no common courtesy anymore. Instead of hunting on top of someone, ask to join them or find another place, instead of running up and down the Bayou all morning at full speed, hang out and cook breakfast in your hole or idle past hunters, instead of sky busting birds with a 10 gauge that you can’t call in, let them go and let someone else work them, or learn to work them yourself. It would be a lot more fun, safe and successful if we all learned how to be true outdoorsmen and women and showed each other respect and courtesy. We are all there for the same reason and it’s public land. Not one of us own it. We all do…

Leave a Reply