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Sheffield Nelson Dagmar WMA

Zone County
575 Monroe, Woodruff
2023-24 Closed Seasons
  • Alligator
  • Bear
  • Turkey
2023-24 Crow
Sept. 1, 2023-Feb. 19, 2024. Open Thursdays through Mondays only. No limit.
2023-24 Deer
Deer Archery: Sept. 23, 2023-Feb. 29, 2024
Deer Muzzleloader (permit hunt): Oct. 21-25, 2023
Deer Modern Gun (permit hunt): Nov. 11-15, 2023
Deer Modern Gun Special Youth Hunt: Nov. 4-5, 2023WMA Deer Bag Limit: Three deer, no more than two bucks, which may include:

  • Two bucks with archery,
  • Three does with archery,
  • Limit two (one buck and one doe) with muzzleloader permit,
  • Limit two (one buck and one doe) with modern gun permit.
  • Limit during the modern gun special youth hunt is two deer; one buck and one doe

Deer Notes:

  • 15-inch inside spread or 18-inch main beam rule.
  • No dogs.
2023-24 Quail
Nov. 1, 2023-Feb. 5, 2024. Daily limit – 6, possession limit -12.
2023-24 Rabbit
Sept. 1, 2023-Feb. 29, 2024. Daily limit – 8, possession limit – 16.
2024-25 Squirrel
May 15, 2024-Feb. 28, 2025. Dogs allowed. Daily limit – 12, possession limit – 48.
2023-24 Waterfowl

Waterfowl Notes:

  • No boats allowed Nov. 11-17, Nov. 27-Dec. 8 and Dec. 24-26.
    Exception 1 – Boats allowed from 4 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. Dec. 2.
    Exception 2 – Boats allowed on the following waters:
    • Robe Bayou from the WMA northern boundary to the low water crossing at I-40.
    • Gator Pond to include only the open water pond area.
    • Bayou DeView designated water trail.
  • Closed to all access (except in designated campsites, parking areas and boat launch ramps) from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m., Nov. 18-Jan. 31 and Feb. 3.
  • Spinning-wing and mechanically operated decoys not allowed. See Page 43.
  • No boats allowed from 1 p.m. to 4 a.m. Nov. 18-26, Dec. 9-23 and Dec. 27-Jan. 31.
    Exception 1 – Boats allowed from 1 p.m. until 6:30 p.m., Dec. 2 and Jan. 31.
    Exception 2 – Boats allowed from 1 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. on the following waters:
    • Robe Bayou from the WMA northern boundary to the low water crossing at I-40.
    • Gator Pond to include only the open water pond area.
    • Bayou DeView designated water trail.
  • Motors with factory exhaust systems only during waterfowl season.
  • No airboats during duck season.

  • Conway George Tract:
    • Hunting allowed only in designated locations through online permit lottery.
    • Closed to all access from Nov. 16-Feb. 3, except for permit holders during permit waterfowl hunts.
    • Visit and click on “GET A LICENSE” to apply. Youth permit applications only appear if logged in under the youth hunters’ Customer ID.
    • All-day hunting Saturdays and Sundays (Youth/Adult Hunt) and half-day hunting on Wednesdays (Adult Hunt). All-day hunting allowed Jan. 31.
    • No more than four participants per party are allowed in each designated location. During Youth/Adult Hunt there is a minimum of one adult mentor per party not to exceed one adult mentor per youth hunter. During Youth/Adult Hunts all members of the party may hunt.
About the Name
The management area received its name from a small farming community that located in the vicinity prior to the 1927 flood. On March 20, 2008, the area was renamed after former commissioner Sheffield Nelson of Little Rock. Nelson served on the commission from 2000 to 2007. He was appointed by former governor Mike Huckabee.  Nelson grew up in Monroe County where the WMA is located.
Sheffield Nelson Dagmar is accessible from I-40 exiting at either Brinkley or Biscoe, depending on direction of travel, and traveling state highway 70 west 6 miles from Brinkley or east 10 miles from Biscoe. Signs are posted at the entrance of Sheffield Nelson Dagmar on highway 70.
The area came into being in 1952.
Area Notes
  • A free annual General Use Permit (WMP) is required to hunt or trap on WMAs. Permits are available online by clicking “Buy Licenses” at or by calling 833-345-0325 or any regional office.
  • A hunting or fishing license or AGFC Camping Permit is required to camp.
  • Check antler restrictions for important additional information.
  • Apple Lake WRA closes to access Nov. 1 and will reopen to access Feb. 16.
  • The Conway George Tract is closed to all trespassing from the last day of the modern gun permit hunt to the last day of waterfowl season (including the waterfowl special youth hunt), except for waterfowl hunting permit holders on Saturdays and Sundays (all day youth hunt) during waterfowl season.
  • Call 833-345-0398 to check if roads are closed before heading out to hunt, fish or camp.
  • For access restrictions that affect all users during waterfowl season, check the waterfowl guidebook.
There are 14 primitive campsites on the area maintained by area personnel.
Sheffield Nelson Dagmar is a bottomland hardwood overflow area with many lakes, ponds, sloughs and bayous. Bayou Deview, Robe Bayou, Hickson lake, Gator Pond, Bowfin Overflow, Straight Lake, Apple Lake Waterfowl Rest Area and numerous other small lakes and sloughs occupy approximately 800 acres.
Hunting Opportunities
The hunting opportunities on Sheffield Nelson Dagmar are available for the following species; cottontails, swamprabbits, coyotes, deer, ducks and furbearers. Geese, dove, woodcock and snipe are hunted but with poor success. Raccoon hunting is good to excellent depending on water levels. Squirrel hunting is excellent some years and is probably the most sought after species on the management area. In order of hunter use I would list squirrel, deer, ducks and rabbits, as the most heavily hunted animals on Sheffield Nelson Dagmar.
Management Practices
Practices are carried out as directed in the Wildlife Management Master Plan. Wildlife openings are maintained by dicing, controlled burning, planting or mowing. These methods are used to treat particular openings by rotation and are treated as deemed necessary by the openland inventory.
Acquisition began in 1952 with the purchase of 5,265 acres from the Dacus Lumber Company. In 1955, an additional 1,209 acres was purchased from the Townsend Lumber Company. In 1971, 1,262 acres was purchased from the Deview Water Company. In recent years, several small acquisitions brought the total acreage of the management area to 7,976 acres. The Commission owns the entire area.
It was purchased as a refuge for waterfowl and small game.
Recreation Other Than Hunting
Sheffield Nelson Dagmar is known for being an excellent fishing area. This activity may constitute the largest use by the public each year. Crappie, bass, bream and catfish are the most sought after on the bayous, sloughs and lakes throughout the management area. Birds of many species frequent the area and provide recreational opportunity for the bird enthusiast. During some winters eagles may be observed in and around Sheffield Nelson Dagmar. The 400-acre Apple Lake Waterfowl Rest Area is utilized by large numbers of ducks and wading birds. Bayou DeView would be a portion of the management area well worth viewing. The bayou is dominated by cypress and tupelo trees with many of the large cypress being 450 to 1200 years old, according studies completed by the University of Arkansas. In 1989 Sheffield Nelson Dagmar was included as a wetland of international importance by the Ramsar Convention.
Restaurants and Other Facilities
Brinkley, located 6 miles east of Sheffield Nelson Dagmar has 4 motels and a RV site to accommodate visitors. The management area has 5 concrete boat launching ramps. They are located at Gator Pond, Big and Little Robe Bayous, Apple Lake Waterfowl Rest Area and Hickson Lake.
Some visitors have been lost on Sheffield Nelson Dagmar, but it is not a common occurrence. Due to the topography, a compass would be advisable. Mosquitoes are abundant during the summer and sprays are a must to survive. One main road traverses the area and is the only road designated as open. Non-graveled roads are closed and three or four wheel ATVs not allowed except by permit.
WMA Master Plan
View the master plan for this AGFC-owned WMA.