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by Steve McCadams
September 24th, 2004

    Arkansas is about to clip the wings on the so-called “Robo Ducks”.

    The spinning-wing decoy will be making its last appearance in Arkansas during the 2004-2005 waterfowl season. Last week, commissioners officially outlawed the use of the decoys for the 2005-2006 waterfowl season.

    Commissioners felt that removing the decoys from the duck hunter’s arsenal in the 2005-2006 season would give both hunters and retail outlets advance notice of the ban.     

    “We believe it’s fair to both buyers and sellers that we allow them one more season,” commissioner Sheffield Nelson said. “We also want to save ducks for the future,” Nelson added. Commissioners have said in the past that the spinning-wing decoy helped hunters kill more young ducks that were attracted to the wing flashes.

    The spinning-wing decoy is defined as any electronic, mechanically-operated, wind-powered or manually-powered spinning-blade device that simulates wing movement. The decoys will be allowed during the snow, blue and Ross’ Conservation Order season dates of Feb. 7 to April 30, 2005.

    Whether or not other states in the Mississippi flyway will follow Arkansas’ lead remains to be seen. Tennessee Wildlife Resources Commission has not addressed the issue at this time.

Steve McCadams is a professional hunting and fishing guide here in the Paris Landing area. He has also contributed many outdoor oriented articles to various national publications.



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