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Apply for an Arkansas Elk Hunting Permit

BY Randy Zellers

ON 05-01-2024


LITTLE ROCK — Hunters interested in pursuing Arkansas’s largest big game animal can apply for a limited hunting permit draw from 8 a.m. May 1 through 11:59 p.m. June 1 at the AGFC’s licensing site ( under the “Special Hunt Permits” tab.

Fifteen permits (Five either sex and 10 antlerless) will be available for public draw through online applications this season. All elk permits will be drawn at the Buffalo River Elk Festival in Jasper, scheduled for June 28-29. Winners will be notified via email and phone once the draw is concluded. Three additional on-site permits (one either sex and two antlerless) will be drawn at the festival. Only people who attend the festival in person will be eligible for the on-site permit drawing.

Only Arkansas residents may apply for an Arkansas public land elk hunting permit. Applicants must have a valid Resident Sportsman Hunting License or must be a holder of a Lifetime Sportsman’s Permit. Applicants must be 6 years or older as of the beginning of the hunt (Oct. 5) to participate. Anyone with 18 or more violations points is ineligible for the permit.

Hunters with access to private land in elk country use a quota system instead of drawn permits. Any resident may purchase a Private Lake Elk Permit (labeled PLE in the AGFC licensing system) for $5 in addition to a valid resident Sportsman Hunting License.. Nonresidents must purchase a Nonresident Elk Permit (NRE) for $300 in addition to a valid Nonresident Annual Hunting License.

The private land quota is 18 total, 6 either sex and 12 antlerless. Hunters must call each evening to determine if the quota has been met before the next day’s hunt. The season ends early if the quota is filled.

Additionally, hunters may take any elk they see outside of the Core Elk Management Zone (Boone, Carroll, Madison, Newton and Searcy counties) while legally deer hunting with archery, muzzleloaders or modern guns of at least .24 caliber.

Visit for more information on elk and elk hunting in Arkansas.





Mature bull elk tend to harems of cows during their breeding season.

Elk were reintroduced to Arkansas in the early 1980s. AGFC photo.

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