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story.lead_photo.caption Ducks are shown in public duck hunting areas in eastern Arkansas.

The opening weekend of Arkansas's waterfowl season saw hunters claim a mixed bag of fowl. From our own experience, we saw teal in larger numbers than we've ever experienced, though it was also our first time to hunt a popular teal area in Steve N. Wilson Raft Creek Bottoms WMA. We saw a few mallards, a lot more pintails and gadwalls, and some widgeons. A couple of days later in southern Arkansas County in private timber, we saw a few more mallards than in east-central Arkansas, but that number was overshadowed by gadwalls and wood ducks, typical for the area we hunt in late November.

Luke Naylor, the AGFC's waterfowl program coordinator, says that during this period in the usual duck season, typically only about 25 percent of total mallard numbers we'll see in Arkansas have arrived here, so we figure better days await us.

We still need more water, though. The boat trail at Raft Creek Bottoms is hard on your average 25 hp these days. One inch of water, believe it or not, would do wonders. When that's coming is the weatherman's guess. Arkansas did see some fronts with rain this week that could help, but much of the public land outside of Dave Donaldson Black River WMA lacks full coverage on the GTRs and moist-soil units.

The good news is, you don't need tremendous amounts of water for great geese hunting. We heard more outstanding reports on specklebelly hunts (greater white-front geese, pictured in the photo above), and we saw a large movement of snow geese on Monday in Arkansas County after a cold air push, as thousands were finding a roosting spot in a flooded field.

This first segment of the 60-day duck season in Arkansas comes to a close at sunset Sunday. The next segment reopens on Friday, Dec. 11 and runs through Dec. 23. After the holiday split, the season reopens again Dec. 16 and runs until Jan. 31, 2021.

* Water levels listed in this report were taken Monday and do not reflect any rainfall Tuesday and Wednesday.

NORTHEAST ARKANSAS

BIG LAKE WMA

North Woods GTR Mast production is good. The Bo Dock gauge currently reads 234. Target level is 235.5 with 0% flooded.

South Woods GTR Mast production is fair. The 7-mile gauge is currently at 232.9 feet. Target level is 234.5 feet with 20% flooded.

Simmons Field Millet and sedge production is good. Native production is very good in the north, middle and south fields with 5 acres of millet planted in the north field. All fields were rolled with a cleated roller in April. 60% flooded.

DAVE DONALDSON BLACK RIVER WMA

Waterfowl hunters should be aware of hangers and submerged logs within the boat runs and GTRs. Keep boats off the levees so AGFC personnel can access the area. Boats blocking access will be moved. Unattended trailers are not to be left overnight on parking areas. River level is 4.17 feet msl and holding.

Upper Island GTR Moderate mast crop in the GTRs. Water gauge is below readable level. Target level is 269.8. 100% flooded.

Lower Island GTR Moderate mast crop in the GTRs. Water gauge is below readable level. Target level is 268.325. 100% flooded.

Upper Reyno GTR Moderate mast crop in the GTRs. Water gauge is below readable level. Target level is 267. 100% flooded.

Lower Reyno GTR Moderate mast crop in the GTRs. Water gauge is below readable level. Target level is 266. 75% flooded.

Winchester GTR Moderate mast crop in the GTRs. Water gauge is below readable level. Target level is 263. 15% flooded.

EARL BUSS BAYOU DEVIEW WMA

South Oliver GTR Mast production has been good. The area is 10% flooded with a current gauge reading of 0.0. Water is present only in the natural sloughs.

Thompson Tract GTR Mast production has been good. The area is 0% flooded with a current gauge reading of 0.0 feet.

Lake Hogue WRA Primarily deep open water habitat. Normal pool level.

SHIREY BAY RAINEY BRAKE WMA

Adam Brake GTR Mast production is good. Water level is 238.7 with a target level of 240.0. 50% flooded.

Rainey Brake GTR Mast crop is good. 85% flooded.

Eagle Pond GTR Mast production is good. 40% flooded.

Phase III Moist-Soil Unit Good wetland-type vegetation. 25% flooded.

Charles Crisp Moist-Soil Unit Good wetland-type vegetation. 60% flooded.

Ward Field Moist-Soil Unit Good wetland-type vegetation. 75% flooded.

River Field Moist-Soil Unit Good wetland-type vegetation. 60% flooded.

ST. FRANCIS SUNKEN LANDS WMA

Hunt Area Mast production is good. Water levels in the huntable areas are dependent on the St. Francis River. The target level for providing huntable timber is 212.0 feet msl at the Oak Donnick gauge. As of Nov. 17, levels were 212.58 feet msl.

Snowden WRA Mixed grasses are present. 0% flooded.

Payneway WRA Pools A,B, C, and D have mixed smartweed and barnyard grasses. Moderate mast is available within pools A, B and C. Pool A is at 0%. Pool B is at 0%. Pool C is at 0% and Pool D is at 0%.

EAST CENTRAL ARKANSAS

HENRY GRAY HURRICANE LAKE WMA

North GTR Good mast crop. Glaise Creek gauge at 192.65. All structures on the North GTR are closed.

South GTR Fair mast crop. Glaise Creek gauge at 192.65. All structures on the North GTR are open.

REX HANCOCK BLACK SWAMP WMA

Gregory GTR. Good mast crop. The Cache River level is 6.0 feet and falling on the Patterson Gauge. 25% flooded.

Main WMA Good mast crop. 40% flooded.

Wyeville Unit Good stand of millet and native vegetation. 100% coverage.

SHEFFIELD NELSON DAGMAR WMA

Mud Slough GTR Good mast crop. 25% flooded.

Apple Lake WRA Good mast crop. 80% flooded.

Conway George Waterfowl Unit A Good millet and native vegetation. 100% flooded.

Conway George Waterfowl Unit B Natural slough area with beneficial wetland plants. 100% flooded.

Conway George Waterfowl Unit C Good stand of millet and native vegetation. 100% flooded.

STEVE N. WILSON RAFT CREEK BOTTOMS WMA

Unit A Excellent stand of native vegetation. 45% flooded.

Unit B Excellent stand of millet and native vegetation. 45% flooded.

Unit C Good stand of native vegetation. 35% flooded.

Unit D (Youth Area) Good stand of millet and native vegetation. 100% flooded.

Unit E Excellent stand of millet and native vegetation. 90% flooded.

Unit F Excellent stand of millet and native vegetation. 90% flooded.

Unit G Fair stand of millet and native vegetation. 50% flooded.

Unit H (Mobility-impaired blind) Excellent stand of native vegetation. 100% flooded.

Unit I Habitat conditions are poor. 100% flooded.

Unit J (Cypert Tract) Excellent stand of native vegetation. 50% flooded.

Unit K (Cypert Tract) Excellent stand of native vegetation. 40% flooded.

Unit L (Cypert Tract) Fair stand of native vegetation. 15% flooded.

Unit M (Magellan Tract) Fair stand of native vegetation. 45% flooded.

CENTRAL ARKANSAS

CRAIG D. CAMPBELL LAKE CONWAY RESERVOIR

Habitat and water levels are normal on both Pierce and Dix creeks.

BELL SLOUGH WMA

Bell Slough GTR Poor to moderate mast crop. 50% flooded.

Palarm Creek WRA Units 1 & 2 Natural vegetation and planted millet. 50% flooded.

CYPRESS BAYOU WMA

Hunt Area Good mast crop. 100% flooded.

Red Cut Slough Tract Unit 1 Good stand of millet and native vegetation. Water level 25%.

Unit 2 Excellent stand of millet and native vegetation. Water level 15%.

Unit 3 Good stand of millet and native vegetation. Water level 70%.

Unit 4 Good stand of native vegetation. Water level 5%.

Unit 5 Good stand of native vegetation. Water level 15%.

Unit 6 Good stand of native vegetation. Water level 15%.

HARRIS BRAKE WMA

Harris Brake Upper Unit Good mast in the GTR. 80% flooded.

Harris Brake Lower Unit Good mast in the GTR. 0% flooded.

HOLLAND BOTTOMS WMA

WRA Moist Soil Unit (East/West) Good mast. 45% flooded.

Lake Pickthorne WRA Excellent conditions. East cell 100% flooded. West Cell is 100% flooded.

SOUTHWEST ARKANSAS

DR. LESTER SITZES III BOIS D' ARC WMA

Bois d'Arc Lake WRA Closed to hunting. Normal.

Red Slough WRA Closed to hunting. Water level 0%.

GTR Good mast production. Water level 0%.

Little Grassy Habitat is good. Water level 0%.

MILLWOOD LAKE Habitat is good. Water level 259.30.

OZAN WMA

Unit 1 Habitat good. 0% flooded.

Unit 2 Habitat good. 0% flooded.

Unit 3 Habitat good. 0% flooded.

Unit 4 Habitat good. 0% flooded.

Unit 5 Habitat good. 0% flooded.

SULPHUR RIVER WMA

Mercer Bayou Habitat conditions are fair. Water level is low. No boat access.

Henry Moore WRA Closed to hunting. 0% flooded.

SOUTHEAST ARKANSAS

BERYL ANTHONY LOWER OUACHITA WMA The only water on the WMA currently is in the oxbow lakes.

FREDDIE BLACK CHOCTAW ISLAND WMA DEER RESEARCH AREA Habitat conditions are good. There is variable flooding associated with the Mississippi River. Use extreme caution when boating on the river.

TRUSTEN HOLDER Habitat conditions good. Flooding is river dependent.

SEVEN DEVILS SWAMP WMA Habitat conditions good. Below gauge. Water levels are variable depending on Cut-Off Creek levels.

CUT-OFF CREEK WMA

Hunt Area Habitat conditions are good. No water.

Pigeon Creek WRA Habitat conditions are good. No water.

BAYOU METO WMA

Upper Vallier GTR Good habitat. Water level 174.10 feet, full pool at 180 feet.

Lower Vallier GTR Good habitat. Water level 174.3 feet, full pool at 179 feet.

Government Cypress GTR Good habitat. Water level 176.45 feet, full pool at 179 feet.

Buckingham Flats GTR Good habitat. 176.0 msl. First phase of pumping completed.

Temple Island GTR Good habitat. Water level 178.53

Canon Brake Good habitat. Water level 168.9 msl. Full pool at 177 msl.

Halowell WRA Excellent habitat. Staggered flooding of units. 60% flooded. Good numbers of ducks on south units

Wrape Plantation WRA Excellent habitat. Staggered flooding of units.

NORTHWEST ARKANSAS

DARDANELLE WMA

McKennon Bottoms 8 acres of native millet, 24 acres of fallow ground. 100% and pumping.

Potter's Pothole Hartman Waterfowl Unit Good stand of native vegetation. 80% flooded. Pumping will begin this week.

OZARK POOL

Dyer Lake Cells Fair Excellent stand of barnyard grass, toothcup, smartweed and sprangletop. Unit 3 was impacted by summer flooding and needs disturbance that is scheduled for next year. Units 1 and 2 are 100% flooded. Unit 3 is 100% flooded.

NIMROD LLOYD MILLWOOD WMA

Nimrod GTR The red oak mast crop and desirable native vegetation growth this year was far less substantial than in previous years. One reason for the lack of desirable forage has a lot to do with the above-average rainfall and flooding this year. 0% flooded.

The water control structures were closed Monday, Nov. 16. Flooding of this area is rainfall dependent.

ED GORDON POINT REMOVE WMA

Little Hole (Unit 1) Natural vegetation. 70% flooded.

Willow Island Natural vegetation. 90% flooded.

Red Gate Natural vegetation and Japanese millet. 75% flooded.

Pig Trough (Units 4 and 5) Natural vegetation. 70% flooded.

Cedar Ridge (Unit 6) Natural vegetation. 50% flooded.

Unit 7A Japanese millet. 80% flooded.

Unit 7B Natural vegetation. 10% flooded.

Duck Trap Natural vegetation. 55% flooded.

Unit 8A Natural vegetation. 55% flooded.

Unit 8B Natural vegetation. 50% flooded.

Unit 8C Natural vegetation. 75% flooded.

Unit 9 Natural vegetation. 90% flooded.

Controversy Corner (Unit 10) Natural vegetation and Japanese millet. 60% flooded.

Remmel Marsh Natural vegetation and Japanese millet. 80% flooded.

Mud Pond (Unit 12) Natural vegetation. 90% flooded.

Turkey Pond (Unit 13A) Natural vegetation and Japanese millet. 50% flooded.

Turkey Pond (Unit 13B) Natural vegetation. 10% flooded.

Turkey Pond (Unit 13C) Japanese millet. 40% flooded.

Teeny Pond (Unit 14) Natural vegetation and Japanese millet. 0% flooded.

Salt Lick (Unit 15) Japanese millet. Water level 60%.

Bobby's Pond (Unit 16) Japanese millet. 60% flooded.

Race Track (Unit 17) Japanese millet. 60% flooded.

FROG BAYOU WMA

Unit 1 Sprangletop, wild millet, smartweed, nutsedge, Japanese millet planted in the northwest corner. 100% flooded.

Unit 2 Good stand of barnyard grass and nutsedge. 100% flooded.

Unit 3 Smartweed, toothcup, nutsedge, barnyard grass, sprangle top and duck potato. 80% flooded. Pumping under way.

Unit 4 Barnyard grass, sprangle top, annual smartweed, nutsedge and crabgrass. 100% flooded.

Unit 5 Sprangle top, wild millet, smartweed, knotgrass, nutsedge and duck potato. 60% flooded. Pumping under way.

Unit 6 Barnyard grass, smartweed, crabgrass and sprangle top. 50% flooded. Pumping will begin Dec. 2.

Unit 7 Excellent stand of barnyard grass, sprangletop and smartweed. 50% flooded. Pumping will begin Dec. 2.

GALLA CREEK WMA

Moderate stand of planted millet and natural vegetation, including a mixture of barnyard grass and sprangletop. 25% flooded. Staged flooding of the impoundment began on Nov. 12.

PETIT JEAN RIVER WMA

Santa Fe GTR Poor mast crop. 0% flooded.

Sore-Head Moist Soil Unit Moderate to great stands of desirable native vegetation throughout. 50% flooded.

Slaty Crossing Moist-Soil Unit The area was seeded with Japanese millet. Only about half of the unit produced a crop of millet, but the areas that did produce look amazing. 0% flooded.

Olin Cain Moist-Soil Unit No Report.

Black Lands Moist-Soil Unit Moderate to great stands of desirable native vegetation throughout. Poor mast crop in the wooded areas. 1000% flooded.

Black Lands Duck Area Excellent mast in the wooded sections. Moderate to great stands of desirable native vegetation mixed throughout. 100% flooded.

Pullen Pond Due to ongoing waterfowl habitat enhancement projects, parts of the northeastern sections are bare ground. Other parts of this area have spotted sections of great desirable native vegetation. Water level 20%.

Pond Creek GTR Poor mast crop with good stands of desirable native vegetation in the open lands. 0% flooded.

Slaty GTR Excellent mast crop. 5% flooded.

Black Lands Duck Area Poor red oak mast crop. This area also contains a mix of moderate to great stands of desirable native vegetation mixed throughout. 0% flooded.

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