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Explore the Wild

Explore the Wild

With over 1,000 wild places to explore to your heart’s content, Explore the Wild is your online tool to find the best public lands in Virginia to hunt, fish, boat, paddle, view wildlife, hike, and go primitive camping!

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Conserve. Connect. Protect.

DWR has been a steward of the outdoors since 1916, leading in wildlife conservation and inspiring people to value the outdoors and their role in nature.

How Do We Fund What We Do?

You might be surprised to know that Virginia DWR is primarily funded from sources other than Virginia general tax dollars.

A lot of our funding to help conserve wildlife and habitat comes from public spending on things like fishing and hunting licenses, tags, or stamps, boat registrations, and via a federal excise tax on firearms and ammunition.

Those sources of financial support have helped us protect hundreds of species and their habitat for over 100 years, but there’s always more we can do for Virginia’s wildlife. That’s where you come in. You too can become a steward of the outdoors by supporting our work or working with us — whether you hunt, fish, and boat or simply enjoy the outdoors.

How You Can Help
The Outdoors Are Better Together

Contribute to a Cause

Your contributions can help us restore wildlife habitat when you become a Restore the Wild member or connect youth to the outdoors through the Virginia Wildlife Grant Program!

Volunteer & Mentorship

Whether you volunteer with us, take the time to mentor a new hunter, or refer a friend to go hunting or fishing, you can make a difference!

Virginia Wildlife Magazine

In the March–April 2024 issue…

This issue is led by a fascinating article looking at the history of the Rapidan Camp and public land opportunities around the Rapidan River. Mike Roberts' essay recalls a memorable spring turkey hunt, while a photo essay of red-shouldered hawks highlights their life cycle. Also included is a profile of conservationist Jeff Kelble, who has worked to improve the Shenandoah River, a look at how alpha-gal syndrome is affecting outdoor enthusiasts, and an intriguing discussion of how Indigenous peoples caught fish.

Shop DWR

Your purchases support the Virginia Wildlife Grant Program, connecting kids to the outdoors.