- Hunting Hours
- Sunday Hunting
- Blaze Colored Requirements
- Hunting with Dogs
- Training Dogs
- Legal Use of Firearms and Archery Tackle
- Valid Concealed Handgun Permit Holders
- Unlawful Methods
- Unlawful Feeding of Certain Wildlife
- Earn A Buck (EAB) Questions and Answers
- All Terrain Vehicle (ATV) Laws
Hunting Hours (see sunrise-sunset table)
- One-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset for nonmigratory birds and game animals except during spring turkey season.
- One-half hour before sunrise until 12 noon during spring gobbler season, except the last 13 days when the hunting hours are 1/2 hour before sunrise until sunset.
- One-half hour before sunrise to sunset for Youth/Apprentice Spring Turkey Hunting Weekend.
- Hours for bear hound training season are from 4:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m daily, including Sundays.
- Bobcats, foxes, raccoons, and opossums may be hunted by day or night during authorized seasons.
- Nuisance species may be taken day or night.
Hunting is allowed on Sundays during the regular hunting seasons under the following circumstances:
- Any landowner or member of his family or any person with written permission from the landowner may hunt on the landowner’s property on Sunday, except within 200 yards of a place of worship or any accessory struc- ture thereof.
- Hunting for waterfowl (ducks, coot, geese, brant, and swan) and rails (including gallinules and moorhens) is allowed on Sun-
days (on private lands and on public lands as permitted by the landowner) subject to geographical limitations established by the Director of the Department and except within 200 yards of a house of worship or any accessory structure thereof.
- Hunting is permitted on licensed hunting (shooting) preserves.
- Raccoons may be hunted on Sunday.
Other than these exceptions and other allowances that had been made specifically by law in the past, it will continue to be unlawful to hunt or kill any wild bird or wild animal, including any nuisance species, with a gun, firearm, or other weapon on Sundays. It will also continue to be unlawful to hunt or kill any deer or bear with a gun, firearm, or other weapon with the aid or assistance of dogs on Sundays.
Blaze Colored Requirements
When hunting any species during a firearms deer season and on youth/apprentice deer hunting weekend:
- Every hunter (see exceptions below), or persons accompanying a hunter, shall wear a solid blaze colored (blaze orange or blaze pink) hat or solid blaze colored upper body clothing that is visible from 360 degrees or display at least 100 square inches of solid blaze colored material at shoulder level within body reach and visible from 360 degrees.
- Hats may have a bill or brim color or design other than solid blaze color. Hats shall not be in “camo” style, since the latter is designed to prevent visibility. A logo, which does not detract from visibility, may be worn on a blaze colored hat.
- Hunters using an enclosed ground blind (pop-up, chair, box, etc.) that conceals them from view shall display at least 100 square inches of solid blaze colored material, visible from 360 degrees attached to or immediately above the blind. This blaze color is in addition to any worn on the hunter’s person.
During the muzzleloader seasons for hunting deer with a muzzleloading firearm, every muzzleloader deer hunter and every person accompanying a muzzleloader deer hunter shall wear solid blaze colors as specified above except when they are physically located in a tree stand or other stationary hunting location.
Blaze colored clothing is not required of waterfowl hunters, dove hunters, individuals participating in hunting dog field trials, and fox hunters on horseback without firearms.
Hunters hunting with archery tackle during an open firearms deer season in areas where the discharge of firearms is prohibited by state law or local ordinance are exempt from the blaze color requirement.
Other than muzzleloader deer hunters, blaze colored clothing is not required of any hunters hunting during the muzzleloader deer seasons.
Hunting With Dogs
The hunting of deer or bear with a gun, firearm, or other weapon with the aid or assistance of dogs on Sunday is prohibited.
- Dogs may be used to pursue wild birds and animals during hunting seasons where not prohibited.
- Section 18.2-136 of the Code of Virginia decriminalizes trespass in certain instances related to dog retrieval. That section provides: “Fox hunters and coon hunters, when the chase begins on other lands, may follow their dogs on prohibited lands, and hunters of all other game, when the chase begins on other lands, may go upon prohibited lands to retrieve their dogs, falcons, hawks, or owls, but may not carry firearms or bow and arrows on their person or hunt any game while thereon. The use of vehicles to retrieve dogs, falcons, hawks, or owls on prohibited lands shall be allowed only with the permission of the landowner or his agent. Any person who goes on prohibited lands to retrieve his dogs, falcons, hawks, or owls pursuant to this section and who willfully refuses to identify himself when requested by the landowner or his agent to do so is guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanor.”
- Tracking dogs maintained and controlled on a lead may be used to find a wounded or dead bear, deer, or turkey statewide during any archery, muzzleloader, or firearm season for these species, or within 24 hours of the end of such season, provided that those who are involved in the retrieval effort have permission to hunt on or to access the land being searched. Licensed hunters engaged in such tracking may possess any weapon permitted for hunting and may use such weapon to humanely kill the wounded bear, deer, or turkey being tracked, including after legal hunting hours. Such weapon shall not be used to hunt, wound, or kill any animal other than the animal being tracked, except in self-defense.
- It is unlawful to use dogs when hunting any species with archery tackle during any archery season, except bear hounds may be used during the youth/apprentice bear hunting weekend.
- It is unlawful to chase with dogs or hunt with dogs or to attempt to chase or hunt with dogs any wild animal from a baited site or to train dogs on any wild animal from a baited site. Furthermore, it shall be unlawful to place, distribute, or maintain bait or salt for any wild animal for the purpose of chasing with dogs, hunting with dogs, or training of dogs. When hunting or training with dogs, a baited site will be considered to be baited for 30 days following the complete removal of all such bait or salt.
- It is unlawful to intentionally cripple or otherwise harm any game animal for the intent of continuing a hunt, or chase, or for the purpose of training dogs. Upon treeing, baying, or otherwise containing an animal in a manner that offers the animal no avenue of escape, the person or the hunting party shall either harvest the animal if within a legal take season and by using lawful methods of take or terminate the chase by retrieving the dogs and allowing the animal freedom to escape for the remainder of the same calendar day.
- It is unlawful to dislodge an animal from a tree for the intent of continuing a hunt, or chase, or for the purpose of training dogs.
The training of dogs on live wild animals is considered hunting and you must have a valid hunting license while training; it is unlawful during the closed season except as noted below.
- You may train dogs during daylight hours on squirrels and nonmigratory game birds on private lands and on rabbits from 1/2 hour before sunrise until midnight on private lands. Participants shall have no weapons other than starter pistols in their possession and no wild animals shall be taken. Weapons may be in possession when training dogs on captive raised and properly marked mallards and pigeons so that they may be immediately shot or recovered.
- You may train dogs on National Forest or Department-owned lands only during authorized training seasons that specifically permit these activities.
- You may train dogs on quail on the Amelia Wildlife Management Area (WMA), Cavalier WMA, Chickahominy WMA, Dick Cross WMA, Mattaponi WMA, and White Oak WMA, and on designated portions of the Chester F. Phelps WMA from September 1 to the day prior to the opening date of the quail hunting season, both dates inclusive. No weapons other than starter pistols may be in possession, and pen-raised birds may not be released.
- Pen-raised quail may be released at any time on private land with landowner permission. However, birds can only be shot during the regular quail season. Regular bag limits apply.
- You may train dogs during daylight hours on rabbits and nonmigratory game birds on the Weston WMA from September 1 through March 31, both dates inclusive. Participants in this dog training season shall have no weapons other than starter pistols in their possession, shall not release pen-raised birds, and must comply with all regulations and laws pertaining to hunting. No game shall be taken.
Sale and Purchase of Legally Harvested Game Species
It is unlawful to sell, barter, or purchase any wild bird or wild animal carcass or parts thereof. There are exceptions and a general representation of these are listed below for your reference and is not intended to be all-inclusive. Specific exceptions and requirements are identified in the Code of Virginia and the Virginia Administrative Code.
- Except for taxidermy mounts referenced below, no portion of a black bear may legally be bought or sold.
Deer and Elk
- The hair, hide, tail, sinew, skull, antlers, bones, and feet as well as products made from these parts may be bought and sold.
Furbearers (beaver, bobcat, coyote, fisher, fox, mink, muskrat, nutria, opossum, otter, raccoon, skunk, and weasels)
- Any hunter, trapper, or person engaged in the business of fur farming can sell raw pelts and unskinned carcasses of legally taken and possessed furbearers at any time.
- Any person who purchases, consigns, or trades in raw pelts and unskinned carcasses of furbearers is required to have a Fur Dealer Permit, except when the pelts or carcasses are to be tanned or used in taxidermy mounts for personal use and not for resale, trade, or other commercial purposes.
- Any person can buy or sell tanned pelts, skinned carcasses, taxidermy mounts, or other furbearer parts (skulls, teeth, claws, bones, glands, secretions, etc.) at any time.
- Legally harvested opossums and raccoons may be bought and sold during the open hunting season.
Migratory Game Birds (brant, coots, doves, ducks, gallinules, geese, mergansers, moorhens, rails, snipe, swans, and woodcock)
- No portion of a migratory game bird may be bought or sold.
Small Game (bobwhite quail, pheasants, rabbits, ruffed grouse, and squirrels)
- The skins, pelts, skulls, bones, teeth, claws, feet, tails, hair, feathers, taxidermy mounts, and other non-meat parts as well as products made from these parts may be bought and sold.
- Legally harvested rabbits and squirrels may be bought and sold during the open hunting season.
- Carcasses, and portions thereof, can be used to make turkey calls for sale and purchase.
- Under specific conditions, unclaimed mounts of native wildlife or their processed hides may be sold by a Virginia licensed taxidermist with the exception of migratory waterfowl, migratory birds and state and federally listed threatened and endangered species.
- A licensed Virginia auctioneer or licensed auction firm may sell wildlife mounts and processed hides (including bears, but not migratory game birds) which have undergone the taxidermy process.
Penalties for a violation may include hunting or trapping privilege revocation for one year to life and forfeiture of firearms. A person found guilty of a violation a second time within three years of a previous conviction shall have their hunting or trapping privilege revoked by the court trying the case.
It is unlawful to:
- Hold in captivity any live wild birds or wild animals outside the limits allowed by regulations without a permit.
- Hunt adjacent to forest fires.
- Use antler traps.
- Willfully and intentionally impede the lawful hunting or trapping of wild birds or wild animals.
- Kill or cripple and knowingly allow any nonmigratory game bird or game animal to be wasted without making a reasonable effort to retrieve the animal and retain it in possession.
- Hunt while under the influence of intoxicants or narcotic drugs.
- Take or attempt to take wild animals and wild birds by the use or aid of recorded animal or bird calls or sounds or recorded or electrically amplified imitation of animals or bird calls or sounds; provided, that electronic calls may be used on private lands for hunting bobcats, coyotes, raccoons, and foxes with written permission of the landowner and on public lands except where specifically prohibited.
- Destroy or harass the nest, eggs, den, or young of any wild bird or animal, except nuisance species, at any time without a permit as required by law.
- Occupy any baited blind or other baited place for the purpose of taking or attempting to take any wild game bird or wild game animal or to put out bait or salt for the purpose of taking or killing any wild game bird or wild game animal, except for the purpose of trapping furbearing animals.
- Destroy, mutilate, or take down “posted” signs or litter. Conviction of littering can result in loss of hunting license.
- Exceed the bag limit or possess over the daily limit of any wild bird or animal while in the forests, fields, or waters of this state.
- Use live birds or animals to decoy or call game.
- Possess or transport any wild bird or wild animal or the carcass or the parts thereof, unless specifically allowed and only in accordance with regulations.
- Sell or purchase any wild bird or wild animal carcass or parts thereof, except as specifically permitted by law.
- Offer for sale, sell, offer to purchase, or pur chase a hunt guaranteeing the killing of a deer, bear, or wild turkey. This law doesn’t prevent a landowner from leasing land for hunting.
- To possess or use deer scents or lures that contain natural deer urine or other bodily fluids while taking, attempting to take, attracting, or scouting wildlife in Virginia.
- Use radio tracking equipment, except on dogs or on raptors permitted by a falconry permit, to aid in the chase, harvest or capture of wildlife.
- Use drones (unmanned aerial vehicles) to hunt, take, or kill a wild animal and to attempt to locate, surveil, aid, or assist in hunting a wild animal.
- Hunt or attempt to kill or trap any species of wild bird or wild animal after having obtained the daily bag or season limit during such day or season. However, any properly licensed person, or a person exempt from having to obtain a license, who has obtained such daily bag or season limit while hunting may assist others who are hunting game by calling game, retrieving game, handling dogs, or conducting drives if the weapon in possession is an unloaded firearm, unloaded arrowgun, a bow without a nocked arrow, or an unloaded crossbow. Any properly licensed person, or person exempt from having to obtain a license, who has obtained such season limit prior to commencement of the hunt may assist others who are hunting game by calling game, retrieving game, handling dogs, or conducting drives, provided said person does not have a firearm, bow, crossbow, or arrowgun in their possession.
Legal Use of Firearms and Archery Tackle
|Firearm, Hunting Device, and Ammunition||Deer||Bear||Elk||Fall Turkey||Spring Gobbler|
(including muzzleloading shotguns) using ammunition loaded with larger than number 2 fine shot
(including muzzleloading shotguns)
(.35 caliber or LARGER)
|Rifles and pistols using rimfire ammunition and air guns
(.35 caliber or SMALLER)
|Rifles and pistols using centerfire ammunition
(.23 caliber or LARGER) Pistols must generate at least 350 foot pounds of energy or greater.
|Rifles and pistols using centerfire ammunition
(SMALLER than .23 caliber)
|Muzzleloading firearms – rifles and pistols
(.45 caliber or LARGER)
|Muzzleloading firearms – rifles and pistols
(SMALLER than .45 caliber)
|Archery equipment with broadhead widths/expandables that open to 7/8-inch||Yes||Yes2||Yes2||Yes||Yes|
Unplugged shotguns are legal for hunting nonmigratory game and crows.
Shotguns (including muzzleloading shotguns) must NOT be larger than 10 gauge and barrels MUST be at least 18 inches. (Rifled barrels are permitted in areas where slugs may be used)
All game birds and animals may be hunted from a boat (with a SHOTGUN and landowner permission), EXCEPT deer. (Licensed trappers may shoot a .22 cali- ber rifle or pistol on or over public inland waters to dispatch trapped animals)
1 Muzzleloaders used for deer/bear/elk must be loaded from the muzzle and fire only a single shot, single bullet or saboted bullet .35 caliber or larger.
Muzzleloading shotguns/rifles, arrowguns, or archery tackle may be used to hunt during the muzzleloading and firearms seasons.
Archery equipment may include: longbows, recurves, compounds, crossbows, sling-bow and pneumatic powered arrowguns/airbows. (Persons with a disabil- ity which hinders them from drawing a bow/crossbow may use an arrowgun during archery seasons when in possession of an authorization form provided by DWR and signed by their physician.
2 Slingbows may NOT be used for bear or elk.
All methods may be used to hunt nuisance species, crow, and small game.
Please refer to Local Firearms Ordinances for any additional prohibitions that may be in your locality.
Other Weapons Usage
- Hunt migratory game birds with a shotgun capable of holding more than three shells in the magazine and chamber, combined, unless allowed by federal regulations and authorized by the Department.
- Discharge a firearm, arrowgun, or archery tackle in or across or within the right-of-way of any public road.
- Cast a light attached to a vehicle or from a vehicle beyond a roadway upon places used by deer without written permission of the landowner or at anytime while in the pos- session of a rifle, shotgun, pistol, arrowgun, archery tackle, or speargun.
- Handle any firearm in a reckless manner so as to endanger the life, limb, or property of any person.
- Shoot a rifle or pistol at wild birds or animals on or over the public inland waters of the state. However, licensed trappers may shoot a .22 caliber rimfire rifle or pistol on or over public inland waters for the purpose of dispatching trapped animals.
- Carry a loaded rifle or pistol on a boat or other floating device on public inland waters for hunting wild birds or animals.
- Kill or attempt to kill any deer while in a boat or other type of watercraft.
- Shoot waterfowl or migratory game birds from a boat being propelled by a motor.
- Shoot or attempt to take any wild bird or animal from any vehicle, except as otherwise provided by law.
- Use vehicles or possess firearms (including concealed weapons) while retrieving dogs on private lands without permission of the landowner.
- Hunt with explosive head arrows or arrows to which any drug, chemical, or toxic substance has been added.
- Hunt wild birds and wild animals with fully automatic firearms, (i.e., machine guns).
Loaded Weapons Definitions
Defined as an arrowgun that has an arrow or bolt inserted on the arrow rest or barrel.
Defined as a crossbow that is cocked and has ei- ther a bolt or arrow engaged or partially engaged on the shooting rail or track of the crossbow, or with a “trackless crossbow” when the crossbow is cocked and a bolt or arrow is nocked.
A muzzleloading firearm is considered “loaded” when the muzzleloader is capped, or has a charged pan, or has a primer or battery installed in the firearm.
Defined as a firearm in which ammunition is chambered or loaded in the magazine or clip and is engaged or partially engaged in a firearm.
Valid Concealed Handgun Permit Holders
Nothing in any Department regulation shall prohibit the possession and transport of a concealed handgun when the individual possesses a valid concealed weapon permit as defined in the Code of Virginia. The granting of a concealed handgun permit shall not thereby authorize the possession of any handgun or other weapon on property or in places where such possession is otherwise prohibited by law or is prohibited by the owner of private property. Furthermore, the possession of a concealed handgun permit does not authorize the use of the concealed handgun for hunting.
Unlawful Feeding of Certain Wildlife
Not only is it illegal to hunt, chase with dogs, or attempt to kill game birds and animals from a baited site, it is also illegal to feed some wildlife under certain circumstances. The Department does not encourage the feeding of wildlife at any time of the year. Feeding restrictions help control the transmission of diseases, wildlife conflicts, littering concerns, and enforcement issues about hunting with bait.
- It is unlawful to place or direct the placement of, deposit, distribute, or scatter food or salt capable of attracting or being eaten by bear, deer, or turkey year round on National Forest and Department-owned lands.
- Cities and towns have the authority to prohibit the feeding of deer by local ordinance. Contact localities for details.
- Department regulation makes it illegal to place, distribute, or allow the placement of food, minerals, salt, carrion, trash, or similar substances to feed or attract the following:
- Deer and Elk:
- September 1 – first Saturday in January; statewide. Attractants must be removed by September 1.
- During any open deer or elk season; statewide
- Year round in Albemarle, Buchanan, Clarke, Culpeper, Dickenson, Fauquier, Frederick, Greene, Loudoun, Louisa, Madison, Orange, Page, Prince William, Rappahannock, Rockingham, Shenandoah, Spotsylvania, Stafford, Warren, and Wise counties (towns and cities within included).
- Bears: year round; statewide
- All species: Illegal to feed any wild animal when the feeding results in property damage, endangers people or wildlife, or creates a public health concern.
- Deer and Elk:
Upon notification by Department personnel, if anyone continues with any of these activities for any purpose and it results in the presence of species mentioned previously in this box, such person shall be in violation of the law and subject to a fine of up to $500. No part of this regulation shall be construed to restrict bonafide agronomic plantings (including wildlife food plots) or distribution of food to livestock.
All Terrain Vehicle (ATV) Laws
No ATV shall be operated:
- On any public highway, or other public property, except as authorized by proper authorities or to the extent necessary to cross a public highway by the most direct route.
- By any person under the age of 16, except that children between the ages of 12 and 16 may operate ATVs powered by engines of no less than 70 cubic centimeters nor more than 90 cubic centimeters displacement.
- By any person unless he is wearing a protective helmet of a type approved by the Superintendent of State Police for use by motorcycle operators.
- On another person’s property without the written consent of the owner of the property or as explicitly authorized by law.
- With a passenger at any time, unless vehicle is designed and equipped to be operated with more than one rider.
The above does not apply to members of the household or employees of the owner or lessee of private property on which the ATV is operated.
Earn A Buck (EAB) Questions and Answers
What is EAB?
EAB is a regulation designed to control deer populations by increasing the antlerless deer kill level in a county, city, or town.
Where is EAB in effect?
- All lands (public and private) in Arlington, Fairfax, and Loudoun counties.
- All lands (public and private) in Prince William County (except on Department of Defense lands).
- All private lands in the counties of Albemarle, Bedford, Clarke, Culpeper, Fauquier, Floyd, Franklin, Frederick, Grayson, Hanover, Henrico, James City, Montgomery, Pulaski, Rappahannock, Roanoke, Shenandoah, Warren, and York.
- Within the incorporated limits of all towns and cities (except the cities of Chesapeake, Suffolk, and Virginia Beach). NOTE: Just because a property’s address has a city or town does not mean the property is within the actual limits of the city or town. For example, if you hunt within the city limits of Charlottesville, this EAB rule applies; however, if you hunt in Albemarle County — even on a property with a Charlottesville address — it does not apply.
When is EAB in effect?
During any open deer season (archery, muzzleloading, and firearms). Antlered bucks may not be killed during the special antlerless only deer season(s) but antlerless deer killed during an antlerless only deer season do count toward EAB.
Has EAB been successful?
Yes, deer populations typically have been reduced following implementation of EAB. EAB has resulted in females composing greater than or equal to 50% of the total deer kill in every EAB county nearly every year since it was first initiated in fall 2008.
In several instances, EAB has been started and then later removed after the desired level of deer population reduction has been achieved.
Can I shoot an antlered buck first under EAB?
Yes, deer hunters in all EAB areas may kill one antlered buck without having first killed an antlerless deer (doe or button buck). However, as noted above, antlered bucks are not legal during special antlerless only deer seasons.
How does EAB work?
For the purposes of this section, the term “license year” defines the period between July 1 and June 30 of the following year.
Deer taken in one EAB county, city, or town do not “carry over” to any other EAB county, city, or town. Each county, city, or town is its own separate management unit with regards to EAB.
Private lands in Albemarle, Bedford, Culpeper, Fauquier, Floyd, Franklin, Grayson, Hanover, Henrico, James City, Montgomery, Pulaski, Rappahannock, Roanoke, Shenandoah, and York counties
Within a license year and within each individual county listed above, you must have taken at least one antlerless deer on private lands in that county before taking a second antlered deer on private lands in that county. In those counties listed above east of the Blue Ridge Mountains where it is legal to harvest a third antlered deer, you must have taken at least two antlerless deer on private lands in that county before taking a third antlered deer on private lands in that county.
Example: Within a license year, you must have taken at least one antlerless deer on private lands in Albemarle County before taking a second antlered deer on private lands in Albemarle County. You must have taken at least two antlerless deer on private lands in Albemarle County before taking a third antlered deer on private lands in Albemarle County.
Private lands in Clarke, Frederick, and Warren counties
Within a license year and within each individual county listed above, you must have taken at least two antlerless deer on private lands in that county before taking a second antlered deer on private lands in that county.
Example: Within a license year, you must have taken at least two antlerless deer on private lands in Clarke County before taking a second antlered deer on private lands in Clarke County.
Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Prince William (except on Department of Defense lands) counties
EAB does not apply to Department of Defense (DOD) lands in Prince William County.
Within a license year and within each individual county listed above, you must have taken at least two antlerless deer in that county before taking a second antlered deer in that county. You must have taken at least three antlerless deer in that county before taking a third antlered deer in that county.
Example: Within a license year, you must have taken at least two antlerless deer in Fairfax County before taking a second antlered deer in Fairfax County. You must have taken at least three antlerless deer in Fairfax County before taking a third antlered deer in Fairfax County.
Cities and Towns
EAB does not apply to the cities of Chesapeake, Suffolk, and Virginia Beach.
Within a license year and within any city or town (except the cities of Chesapeake, Suffolk, and Virginia Beach), you must have taken at least one antlerless deer in that city or town before taking a second antlered deer in that city or town. In those cities and towns east of the Blue Ridge Mountains where it is legal to harvest a third antlered deer, you must have taken at least two antlerless deer in that city or town before taking a third antlered deer in that city or town.
Example: Within a license year, you must have taken at least one antlerless deer in the City of Lynchburg before taking a second antlered deer in the City of Lynchburg. You must have taken at least two antlerless deer in the City of Lynchburg before taking a third antlered deer in the City of Lynchburg.
Should I shoot an antlerless deer first in an EAB area?
Yes, in most cases. EAB was never intended to require that an antlerless deer be killed first. Instead, it allows hunters to be selective for that first deer of the season (i.e. harvest that buck you have seen all summer on your trail camera). With that said, it is recommended that a hunter’s first deer (and second in NOVA) be the first antlerless deer they can get an ethical shot at, including fawns. With an antlerless deer (or two in NOVA) on the ground, then they now have two “valid” buck tags to use at any time. The most risky situation is for a hunter to harvest a small antlered buck first. In this situation, they have to shoot an antlerless deer (or two in NOVA) next and guess what happens: they see a really big buck they cannot legally kill. To prevent this from happening, deer hunters should try and stay “ahead” of EAB instead of getting “behind” in EAB.
What does “restricted to individual counties, town, or city” mean?
EAB only applies to deer killed within each individual EAB county, city, or town within a license year (July 1 to June 30). Deer taken in one EAB county, city, or town do not “carry over” to any other EAB county, city, or town. Each county, city, or town is its own separate management unit with regards to EAB.
Do deer hunters have to kill an antlerless deer first in an EAB county?
No, in every EAB area the first deer killed in the area may be an antlered buck or an antlerless deer (a doe or button buck).
Does EAB impact the daily or season deer bag limit?
No. The normal daily and season deer bag limits still apply.
Why is a deer hunter in Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Prince William counties required to kill two antlerless deer before killing a second antlered buck?
To further increase the antlerless deer kill level within these four very urban counties. A similar EAB requirement for Fairfax County public land archery hunts was very successful.
Why was the EAB requirement increased to two antlerless deer in Clarke, Fredrick, and Warren counties?
Due to Chronic Wasting Disease and because the Department’s Deer Management Plan calls for further deer population reduction in these counties.
Why is a deer hunter in Clarke, Frederick and Warren counties required to kill two antlerless deer before killing a second antlered buck?
To further increase the antlerless deer kill level within the Chronic Wasting Disease Management Area.
Will I have enough antlerless tags on my license to kill a 3rd buck in Northern Virginia?
Yes. There are three antlerless only deer tags on a big game license. Two antlerless deer must be killed before a second buck can be killed, but only one additional antlerless deer must be taken to kill a third buck.
Why require EAB?
The Department’s Deer Management Plan calls for deer populations to be reduced in most EAB areas and traditional liberal deer regulations have not completely achieved that objective.
Can antlerless deer “carry over” from year to year?
What should I do if I have additional EAB questions?
Email Matt Knox at firstname.lastname@example.org.