The Army Corps of Engineers is asking the public to help preserve artifacts at Beaver Lake.
They include things like Native American arrowheads and pottery as well as remains of buildings, rock art and ceramics. The Corps of Engineers would like to remind people that it's against the law to remove these artifacts from any public Beaver Lake land.
Corps Park Rangers have noticed an increase in incidents of people taking advantage of low lake levels to dig for artifacts.
It's illegal to do so and could result in misdemeanor or felony charges, fines as high as $250,000 or up to 10 years in jail.
There are federal laws in place intended to ensure the protection of any item over 100 years old that is potentially of archaeological interest.
According to the Arkansas Archaeological Society, what is often considered harmless hobby digging is actually destroying the past.
They say removing artifacts to sell or add to a personal collection destroys the historical context of the item. In some cases, people aren't aware of the harm they're causing. Others simply don't care.
Park rangers would like Beaver Lake visitors to keep an eye out for people digging for artifacts and report any illegal activity they see.
If you see someone digging illegally on the shores of Beaver Lake, you can contact the Army Corps of Engineers office at (479) 636-1210, ext. 1701
They ask that you do not attempt to confront anyone engaging in illegal activities.