Arkansas is a bucket list state for water fowl hunters all over the world. Arkansas is unique because we have a lot of water. Some of the best areas for hunting are rice fields. Rice is one of our main crops.
Stuttgart is especially well known to duck hunters. It's located on the Mississippi Flyway, and the rice fields and flooded timbers give ducks a perfect place to take a break. The flooded timbers are what most hunters flock to Stuttgart for. They also come for the Wings Over the Prairie Festival and Wold Championship Duck Calling Contest.
Stuttgart isn't the only place to find ducks. It's said that the flyway may be moving north. Northeast Arkansas may be an even better place to hunt than Stuttgart. One of the most famously photographed private reservoirs , Claypools, is located in the Northeast. There are ducks in Northwest Arkansas and pretty much any part of the state if you want to look hard enough.
Many of the best places to hunt in Stuttgart are private lands. You can get to some of them with guided tours (or being friendly to fellow hunters). Bayou Meto is a public area. You can hunt on foot or in a boat. At 33,700 acres it's one of the largest state-owned wildlife management areas in the nation. It offers one of the largest public areas for flooded timber or green-timber duck hunting in North America. GPS Address: 31 Hollowell Rd Humphrey, AR 72073.
This refuge sits in the Mississippi Delta region where the White River meets the Mississippi. There are 90 miles of flooded bottomland forests here. The reserve has 40 boat ramps and is surrounded rice fields, helping make the reserve the perfect place to hunt. Admission is free, but a refuge user permit is required for hunting. GPS Address: 57 S CC Camp Rd, Saint Charles, AR 72140.
Moving up a little North of Stuttgart, Bald Knob Wildlife Refuge was once a rice farm. The refuge contains some cropland that is still farmed to provide food and shelter for wildlife. Of the 14,800 acres of the refuge, 9,000 are cropland. Parts of this refuge are closed to hunting, and a permit is required. GPS Address: 1439 Coal Chute Road, Bald Knob,AR,72010.
You might not be able to hunt at Claypools or the Chicago Hole, two of the legendary duck areas in North East Arkansas, but Bayou Deview is in the same area. The Wiener area is one of the principal rice-producing areas of the state, which makes it ideal for ducks. Located near Wiener, AR.
Located in northeastern Arkansas, near Pocahontas, the Black River is a tributary of the White River. Some parts of this reserve are closed to hunting, but others offer flooded green timber hunting. There are some hunting restrictions.
Bois D'Arc is located in southwest Arkansas, in Hempstead County. Bois D'Arc Wildlife Management Area is 185 acres of Bottomland hardwoods with an engineered green-tree reservoir for water fowl. Ducks Unlimited assisted with this project. Much of this reservoir is accessible only by boat.
The Ouachita River bottoms are a good place to see and hunt ducks when the Ouachita River floods. This wildlife management area is usually 7,020 acres of prime bottomland hardwoods, but when the water is up, it becomes flooded green timber. Access to the WMA is limited. Located near Felsenthal.