A 60-day duck hunting season, the longest allowed under federal regulations, has been approved for Arkansas by the state Game and Fish Commission. The commission also voted Thursday to allow a six-duck bag limit in the 2004-2005 waterfowl season. Hunters are allowed no more than four mallards, only one of which may be a hen, one pintail, three mottled ducks, three scaup, two wood ducks, two redheads, one black duck and one canvasback, as long as the bag does not exceed the six-duck limit. The season will be split into three segments, the first of which runs from November 20th to December fifth. The second segment is set to begin December 17th and end December 24th. The final segment will run from December 26th to January 30th. The youth waterfowl hunt is scheduled for midseason, instead of at the end when it is usually scheduled. The December 11th and December 12th dates are expected to allow young Arkansans better hunting opportunities. In the late-season slot, the duck population is greatly reduced because many of the ducks have already been killed and the remaining ducks have moved out of the state. Waterfowl biologist Andrew James told commissioners that the number of ducks killed in 2003 was slightly lower than those killed in 2002. The wigeon harvest was almost 50 percent lower in 2003 and the mallard harvest was about 11 percent lower. Pintail and wood duck harvests also declined. Despite the decline in most harvests, there was almost a 200 percent increase in the harvest of blue-winged teal from 2002 to 2003. Commissioners also set dates for pintail season, which will run from November 20th to November 28th and January tenth to Jan. 30th; and for canvasback season, which will be from January first to January 30th. At their next meeting, commissioners plan to decide whether to ban spinning wing decoys for the 2005-2006 season, cut hunting statewide to a half day on some days, close rest areas to hunting and change shooting times on wildlife management areas.