Little Rock, Arkansas – The state’s alligator hunting season was successful, according to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.
The organization reported on Wednesday that 157 alligators were taken during the state’s 2022 season. The state had given 43 public land permits by the time the two-week season expired on Monday at sunrise.
Hunting on private land is done using a quota system.
The largest alligator taken in this hunt was 13 feet 6 inches long and was grabbed on public land in southeast Arkansas.
Hunting for alligators is only permitted in south Arkansas, and hunters reported seeing more alligators than were taken in.
“All of the public land hunters I’ve talked to pretty much saw gators,” Mark Barbee, assistant regional manager in the AGFC’s Monticello Regional Office and hunt coordinator said. “But they tend to hold out for a little larger one. Many have told me in the past that they passed on 8- and 9-foot gators, hoping for a 10-footer or better, and time ran out on them.”
Alligators are only hunted at night, per state law. Additionally, according to the legislation, a hunter must use harpoons or hand-held snares to capture them.
The alligator is killed with a shotgun or bang stick after being dragged to the side of a boat.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service regulates alligator hunts and is in charge of the commission’s rules for surveying and harvesting alligators. By 1960, alligators in Arkansas were all but extinct. In the middle of the 1970s, AGFC started restocking alligators with creatures from Louisiana.
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