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Harvest Information Program (HIP)

New HIP Program Registration Process

All hunters who plan to hunt migratory game birds (including doves, waterfowl, rails, woodcock, snipe, coots, gallinules or moorhens) in Virginia, whether licensed or license-exempt, must be registered with the Virginia Harvest Information Program (HIP). The HIP registration is valid for one year (from July 1 through June 30 of the following year) and must be completed after July 1 for each upcoming hunting season. You will not be given a separate HIP number but your customer number will serve as your HIP registration, and confirmation of your HIP registration will be printed on you license.

If you do not plan to hunt migratory game birds you do not need to register for HIP. 

Please do not register for HIP if you do not plan to hunt the migratory game birds listed above.  Follow-up surveys sent to those who do not hunt migratory game birds reduce the amount of data available for calculating migratory game bird harvests and for setting future hunting regulations. 

How do I register for HIP?

To register for HIP, visit Go Outdoors Virginia after July 1. Go Outdoors Virginia represents a new online portal, and one-stop shop, for DWR customers to purchase recreational fishing and hunting licenses, check game, register and renew vessels, sign up for quota hunts, and more. You are required to create a Customer Account in order to purchase your license and register for HIP. You can manage your account online 24/7/365.

Once a customer account has been completed you can proceed to purchase/replace a license/permit. There is no cost to register for HIP.  Non-residents hunting migratory game birds in Virginia are also required to register for HIP in Virginia after purchasing their license.

License-Exempt Hunters

If license-exempt hunters plan to hunt the migratory game birds listed above, they are also required to register for HIP starting July 1 of every year. If not already established, exempt hunters can create a Customer Account.

Why do I need to register for HIP?

HIP registration is a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) requirement so that migratory game bird hunters can be identified for conducting hunter and harvest surveys. HIP registration is NOT required if you do not hunt migratory game birds (doves, waterfowl, rails, woodcock, snipe, coots, gallinules or moorhens). Hunters should realize that their participation in HIP will benefit the future of their migratory game bird hunting in Virginia. Answers provided by hunters to the questions during the HIP registration process are not used to compile harvest estimates, but they are used to identify what types of birds that person usually hunts. This insures that follow-up surveys for specific species are sent to the appropriate hunters. For example, most surveys about dove harvest are sent to hunters who usually hunt doves, while most waterfowl harvest surveys are sent to hunters who usually hunt ducks and/or geese.

If a hunter’s name is one of the few selected for a follow-up harvest survey, they will be asked to voluntarily complete a detailed survey about their harvest during this year’s hunting season. They will receive a hunting diary form and will be asked to keep a record of the number of times they hunted and the migratory birds they harvested during the season. They will also be given an addressed, postage-paid envelope to return their hunting form at the end of the season. Responses from hunters who choose to participate will be kept strictly confidential and will not be used for any other purpose. As soon as the survey is completed, the USFWS will destroy all hunter names and address records. This survey provides the information used to develop nationwide harvest estimates.

Your HIP registration must be available for inspection by Law Enforcement officials (State and Federal) when hunting migratory game birds.

Reminder: different states have different methods for collecting information and registering hunters into the HIP program. Hunters are reminded that if planning to hunt migratory game birds in other states, they must be HIP-registered with each state.