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Tagging and Checking Big Game

  • How do I tag and check a deer?

    Option 1. Immediately upon harvest and before moving deer check via internet, mobile app or phone 833-289-2469.

    Option 2.

    Step 1.

    • Immediately upon taking a deer (before moving it), fill out the appropriate deer tag from your license or in the guidebook and complete all information, except Check #, legibly and in ink (you may substitute a piece of paper for this tag). Fasten the tag to the ear or antler. The original tag must remain as attached to the deer until point of final storage.
      Duplicate harvest information reflecting the name, address, species, sex, date taken and check confirmation number must remain with all portions until point of final storage, including while in transit. 
      Carcass ID Tag
    • For deer harvested on private lands, use this deer zone map for zone numbers.
    • For deer harvested on public lands, use this WMA Deer Zone Map for zone numbers.

    Step 2.

    • Call 833-289-2469, visit or use the AGFC mobile app to check your deer within 12 hours of harvest.
    • After checking game, record the check number on your tag.
    • Entrails may be removed, but evidence of the animal’s sex must remain until checked. Deer may be quartered in the field, but the head must be kept within arm’s reach of all four quarters of the animal until checked.
    • No deer/elk may be transported out of the CWD Management Zone without following these procedures
    • No big game animal may be transported across state lines before being checked unless normal travel routes require a hunter to cross a state line to check the animal.
    • If you choose to give away all or a portion of your game after it has been checked, you must use a game transfer form.

  • How do I check a deer for a youth hunter?

    Youths must be at least 6 years old to harvest and check big game. To check a deer, the youth's mentor, parent or guardian may use the same procedure as standard checking. They must use the youth's name and date of birth. If the youth has a Social Security Number issued, you may go online and create a new customer profile during the check-in by clicking on "New Customer" in the login screen. The AGFC's license system will then issue the youth their one-time license number that they will use for the rest of their life.


  • What is required for identification at a deer camp, processor or taxidermist?

    Deer camps, processors and taxidermists must maintain records when storing all wildlife. All portions of each deer in storage must be labeled with the following information: Hunter name, customer identification number from license, address, date of harvest, species and game check number. A sample Carcass Identification Tag is available in the Arkansas Hunting Guidebook.  

  • What is required if I want to give my deer to someone?

    Any harvested wildlife transferred to another person must include the following information: Name of person who killed the game, species, quantity, person receiving the game, date of kill and check number (if it’s big game). A sample Transfer Tag is available in the Arkansas Hunting Guidebook.  

  • What Deer Zone do I check my deer to if I'm on a WMA or other public land?

    Wildlife Management Areas and National Wildlfie Refuges have their own Zone Numbers, available in the individual WMA regulations listed in the back of the Arkansas Hunting Guidebook.

  • Do I need to save my confirmation number?

    When your check is complete, you will receive an alphanumeric confirmation code that is four spaces long. Please store this number on your phone with a screenshot or write it down for future use. If you have an account with the AGFC app, it will store the confirmation number for you, but checking other people's deer for them without an account or checking via phone or website requires you to manually save the confirmation code.

    The text of the confirmation code message will be, "Your game check was submitted successfully. Your game check number is _ _ _ _. Remember to record this number on your tag!"

  • How do I tag and check a bear?

    All hunters must have a valid bear permit in addition to a valid Arkansas Annual Hunting License to hunt bear. Nonresidents must have a $300 Nonresident Bear Permit (NRB). Residents must have a free Resident Bear Permit (TBEAR).

    Option 1. Immediately upon taking a bear (before moving it), you must check your harvest online, by the AGFC mobile app or phone (833-289-2469) and have confirmation number readily available.
    Option 2. Fill out the game tag provided in this guidebook in ink. You may substitute a piece of paper for this tag, it must include the hunter’s name, the date and bear zone of harvest or confirmation number written legibly in ink. After tagging your game, call 833-289-2469, visit or use the AGFC mobile app within 12 hours to complete checking.

    Before freezing or processing, collect a premolar and hair to submit later. Successful hunters must submit a premolar and a hair sample to fulfill the check requirements for a bear. The photo and link below explains how to extract a premolar and collect hair. A premolar and hair sample must be submitted within 7 days AFTER you receive your premolar package from AGFC.

    How do I collect a tooth and hair?
    The upper and lower premolar tooth is right behind the canine tooth (see photo). Premolars generally come out of the jaw easily with a small flat awl, screwdriver or locking knife blade (be careful).

    First, cut the gum around the tooth. Then lift the tooth out gently by undercutting the premolar, using the curve of the canine tooth to guide you. The bear's age can only be determined by the root of the tooth, so be careful not to break the root as you extract the tooth. If you break the root, try extracting another premolar from the top or bottom. A tuft of hair can be extracted anywhere on the back or neck using pliers. Be sure to collect 20-30 guard hairs with follicles.

    What is the need for submitting a tooth and hair?
    Aging harvested bears lets biologists accurately model bear populations and monitor the population structure. Age data must be collected from all harvested bears to better manage bear populations.

    Click to watch a video demonstration.

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