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STICK-N-STRING FOR COUES AND JAVE L I N A S TA F F A R T I C L E AUSTIN ATKINSON MITCH ATKINSON, COUES DEER ARIZONA PROFESSIONAL HUNT ADVISOR H ome to some of the best trophy mule deer hunting in the country, Arizona is often overlooked as a Coues deer-rich state with tons of opportunity hunts available over-the- counter. Those who have discovered the hidden gem of hunting the archery over-the-counter deer season are sure to be addicted to this adrenaline-filled hunt. If you have not been to the Grand Canyon State for an archery deer hunt, then I hope this article inspires you to give it a shot this next winter. In addition to the deer opportunities, you can also hunt one of the most archery- friendly species of desert game, the javelina. For this article, I will touch on a few topics that will help you know where to look to start planning your own archery adventure, including the units with a substantial Coues deer presence. Keep in mind that there are many other units available to hunt mule deer with the same over-the-counter permit if you choose to do so. In 2016, 14,346 hunters went into the field with over-the-counter deer tags with an average of eight hunting days per hunter. The overall harvest success was 12% with a reported 1,189 mule deer AUSTIN WITH A SOUTHERN ARIZONA COUES DEER 12 and 576 Coues bucks harvested. It is important to note that in 2013 Arizona eliminated the mandatory harvest reporting requirement for archery deer hunters. All harvest reporting numbers are estimates based on the volunteer harvest reports that are turned in. This makes it very difficult to understand exactly how many bucks were actually killed in a particular unit. The table at the end of this article reflects the official data released from the Arizona Game & Fish Department, but it should be taken with a grain of salt.