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DMAP
Deer Management Assistance Program (DMAP)

DMAP logo Nearly 90 percent of Arkansas is privately owned. People who hunt and maintain these properties have a large influence on the state’s deer quality and quantity. Every time a hunter pulls a trigger or releases a bowstring, they are making a management decision.

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s Deer Management Assistance Program (DMAP) assists landowners and hunting clubs with the management of their local deer herds. Participants collect and submit biological data from the deer harvested on their property. In return, participants are provided with a customized, property-specific report with future harvest recommendations based on the club’s management goals.

Participants in DMAP learn:

  • The importance of balanced sex ratios and age structure
  • Disease monitoring, prevention, and abatement
  • Quality deer management principles
  • The importance of quality habitat and proper herd management for improved herd quality

Participants may also request a free habitat site visit and habitat management plan. Through this plan, AGFC biologists can provide additional recommendations for improving deer and other wildlife populations. Biologists may also be able to identify possible financial assistance to help manage the property.

Doe, buck and fawn

What are the benefits of DMAP?

  • Increased hunting opportunity
  • Increased management flexibility
  • Improved hunt quality
  • Healthier, higher quality deer populations
  • Potentially more improved/better wildlife habitats
  • More localized management based on harvest, observation, and biological data

DMAP's primary goals are to:

  • Provide deer management technical assistance to participants based on their specific management goals utilizing quality deer management principles
  • Educate participants on basic white-tailed deer biology and management strategies in order to achieve desired management goals by providing them with site-specific harvest reports, harvest recommendations, and management plans
  • Educate participants on habitat management practices focused on improving the quality of local deer herds
  • Educate participants on practices aimed at increasing disease awareness and prevention
  • Provide technical assistance to cities, municipalities, public works, and commercial farming operations in order to address and reduce deer-human conflicts and/or public safety issues
  • Assist other conservation agencies with the abiliity to provide specialized deer removal tools/opportunities
  • Provide robust biological and hunter observation data sets that will be used for the development and tracking of biological population indices with the AGFC's White-tailed Deer Strategic Management Plan

Participation in DMAP

Participation in DMAP is voluntary and free. Participation does not affect land-access policies. There are four levels of DMAP programming:

Level 1A | Population Management | Application for Enrollment
Assists landowners experiencing deer-related property damage; cities and/or public services experiencing deer-human conflicts or deer-related safety issues; and/or to provide partnering government conservation agencies with a management tool to address deer populations within sensitive areas.

  • An annual site visit by the DMAP biologist is required.
  • Participants are required to record general harvest data (i.e. deer number, hunter name, date of harvest, confirmation number, sex, tag type used, deer zone, and county) on a data ledger.
  • Participants must submit all deer harvested for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) sampling purposes.
  • Level 1A participants are not required to collect biological or hunter observation data but it is strongly encouraged.

Level 1 | Basic Deer Management | Application for Enrollment
Maintains the herd at a healthy, sustainable level (at or below carrying capacity). This level provides maximum harvest opportunity with harvest of bucks and does alike.

  • Site visits will be conducted by the DMAP biologist at the request of the club.
  • Participants are required to record general harvest and biological data from all deer harvested.
  • Participants are not required to record hunter observation data or submit CWD samples but are strongly encouraged.

Level 2 | Quality Deer Management | Application for Enrollment
Focuses on quality deer management principles that provide a moderate level of buck harvest with a relatively higher harvest of does to encourage mature bucks.

  • Buck harvest will peak in the 3.5 age class.
  • Site visits will be conducted by the DMAP biologist at the request of the club.
  • Participants are required to record general harvest and biological data from all deer harvested.
  • Participants are not required to record hunter observation data or submit CWD samples but are strongly encouraged.

Level 3 | Intensive Deer Management | Application for Enrollment
Provides a high harvest of does with very selective harvest of bucks in order to allow bucks to reach older age classes and reach full antler potential.

  • Buck harvest will peak in the 4.5 - 5.5 age class.
  • Site visits will be conducted by the DMAP biologist at the request of the club.
  • Participants are required to record general harvest and biological data from all deer harvested.
  • Participants are not required to record hunter observation data or submit CWD samples but are strongly encouraged.

Participation Timeline

July 1 Deadline for clubs to apply or renew with the regional DMAP biologist.
September 15 Clubs receive DMAP packets containing DMAP tags, harvest reports and recommendations, management plans, data ledgers, jawbone tags, etc.
March 15 Deadline to have all data and jawbones submitted to your DMAP biologist.

Enrollment is easy; however, certain rules do apply. Landowners and hunting clubs with less than 500 acres are encouraged to join with neighboring landowners to meet the minimum acreage requirement and to increase the success of achieving deer management goals.

Please submit a completed DMAP Enrollment Application to the regional AGFC office or DMAP biologist nearest you by July 1.

Deer Management Assistance Program (DMAP) Biologist Map

Hunting clubs participating in DMAP levels 1, 2 or 3 are required to collect biological data (jawbones, weight, lactation, antler measurements, etc.) throughout the deer season on all deer that are harvested by the club. While DMAP Level 1-A clubs are not required to collect these data, it is highly encouraged. Each club will be trained on the proper method of collecting such data, and all data collected must be submitted to the DMAP biologist by March 15 each year.

Hunting clubs participating in DMAP Level 1-A are required to record general harvest data (i.e. deer number, hunter name, confirmation #, date of harvest, sex, type of tag used, deer zone, and county) on a data ledger and return it to the DMAP biologist by March 15 each year. Also, the collection of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) samples are required for DMAP Level 1-A clubs. Level 1-A participants will coordinate with their respective DMAP biologist to arrange sample/tissue submission. While DMAP levels 1, 2 and 3 are not required to submit deer heads for CWD testing, it is highly encouraged.

Learn about CWD testing options closest to where you hunt. Remember to keep in mind carcass movement restrictions when planning your hunt and testing.