Predators & Small Game
Arizona offers Coues whitetail hunters the best chance at filling a tag.
Season Dates: Although season dates vary with the unit hunted, archery season begins Aug. 24 and runs through Sept. 13 and reopens Dec. 14 and runs through Jan. 31. Muzzleloader and rifle seasons run from Oct. 26 to Nov. 1, Nov. 9 to 15 and Dec. 14 to 31.
The Grade: A
For hunters who are looking to add a Coues white-tailed deer hunt to their bucket list, there is perhaps no better place to check it off than the Grand Canyon State. With a healthy population of these pint-sized deer spread across the central and southeastern regions of the state, most of which are located on public ground, Arizona is the best option for the DIY hunter. Although an Arizona deer tag can be tough to draw, whitetail tags tend to be easier; and in many areas an archery tag is a sure thing. Hunter success usually runs around 25 percent, but when you consider that Chuck Adams indicated in his autobiography, “Life at Full Draw,” that his Coues world-record buck was his toughest North American challenge, a 25-percent success rate isn’t too shabby.
Antler Nation Knowledge: Arizona probably offers better chance at a true trophy-class Coues buck than anywhere else. Thirteen of the top 20 Coues Boone and Crockett typical bucks have come from Arizona, and 16 of the top 20 non-typical bucks have come from the Grand Canyon State as well. P&Y entries are also strong with 393 typical and non-typical entries combined.
Record B&C Typical
The top-scoring Coues whitetail was taken by Ed Stockwell in Pima County in 1953 and is currently ranked No. 1 of all time.
Total B&C Typical Entries
Record B&C Non-Typical
The top Coues non-typical was taken by an unknown Native American in Graham County prior to 1971 and is currently ranked No. 1 of all time.
Total B&C Non-Typical Entries
Est. Whitetail Population
No. Licenses Sold Annually
Deer to Hunter Ratio
Resident license and permit