West Virginia - Wild and Wonderful

About West Virginia

West Virginia is noted for its mountains and diverse topography, its historically significant logging and coal mining industries, and its political and labor history. It is one of the most densely karstic areas in the world, making it a choice area for recreational caving and scientific research.

Business

West Virginia is full of opportunity for any business with a growing economy and a highly dedicated workforce. Whether you are running an existing business or thinking of starting a new business you can find all of the information you need throughout this business section.

Education

West Virginia is fortunate to have a tremendous education system with a high standard of excellence. Please use the information provided here to learn more about the wealth of educational opportunities in our great state.

Employment

West Virginia is home to one of the finest workforces in the country based on our hard work and commitment to quality. Whether you are looking for new job opportunities, enhancing your job skills or researching future employment trends you can find all of the information you need throughout this employment section.

Family

West Virginia offers the perfect balance of a rural and urban setting that suits a variety of lifestyles. This is a state where you can go whitewater rafting in the morning, go to an art exhibit in the afternoon and attend a concert in the evening. Whether you just moved to the Mountain State or your family has been here since it was founded, you are part of our community.

Health

Maintaining proper health is vital to ensuring the highest quality of life possible. West Virginia strives to provide one of the best health care systems in the country that is affordable and available to all residents of the state. This section contains numerous resources to assist you in accessing the health care services provided in the state.

Tourism

Exhilarate in the lasting beauty and natural wonder scattered throughout West Virginia. From unmatched outdoor recreation to world-class resorts, breathtaking scenery and a variety of cultural and historic attractions, West Virginia is an ideal spot to plan your next adventure. Discover for yourself what makes West Virginia wild and wonderful.

 2012 West Virginia deer gun seasons fact sheet

11/15/2012
The West Virginia firearm buck gun season is Nov. 19 – Dec. 1. It is open in all counties except Logan, Mingo, McDowell and Wyoming.

Approximately 330,000 licensed hunters will be in West Virginia’s woods during this season.

Hunters should review the 2012 - 2013 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Summary for detailed instructions concerning bag limits and season dates. The regulations are available at license agents, DNR district offices, or online at www.wvdnr.gov.

A list of wildlife checking stations in West Virginia can be found online at www.wvdnr.gov/hunting/check_stations.asp

The firearm antlered deer bag limit during the two-week buck season is two (one on the base license and one on an RG [resident] or RRG [nonresident] stamp). A hunter may take no more than three antlered deer per calendar year in all archery and firearms seasons combined.

The last day to purchase an additional buck deer gun tag (Class RG/RRG Stamp) is Nov. 18, 2012. Class RG and Class RRG additional buck stamps can only be used to take an additional antlered deer in firearm buck season. Unused Class RG and Class RRG stamps may not be used in antlerless or muzzleloader seasons.

There are 10 counties or portions thereof (see the 2012 – 2013 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Summary) that require buck firearms hunters to take an antlerless deer during the antlerless firearms deer season (with Class N permit for residents or Class NN permit for nonresidents) prior to harvesting a second antlered deer during the buck firearms season.

All private and public lands in counties having a firearms antlerless deer gun season (Class N for residents and Class NN for nonresidents) will be open Nov. 19 – Dec. 1 (concurrent with the buck gun season), Dec. 13 - 15, and Dec. 28 – 31. Bag limits vary among counties but will be either one or three antlerless deer. See regulations for details.

All deer must be field tagged and checked in within 72 hours of the time of kill or within 24 hours of the close of the season, whichever comes first. Additional deer may not be taken until all previously taken deer have been checked. Only one deer may be taken per day during the buck season.

Concurrent with the buck gun season will be a bear gun season in eight counties: Kanawha, Boone, Fayette, Raleigh, Monongalia, Preston, Hampshire and Morgan.

Deer hunters spend an estimated $230 million in West Virginia, much of it in the rural areas of the state that depend upon the deer seasons for a large portion of their annual income.

In 2011, deer hunters in West Virginia harvested 60,157 bucks during the two-week buck season, an increase of 38 percent from the 2010 harvest. This is two percent less than the five-year average harvest of 61,428 and ranks 24th among all past years.

WVDNR forecasts that the buck harvest should be slightly higher for 2012. All regions should see a similar-to-higher harvest this year. The increased reproduction of 2011 and the mild winter of 2011-2012 should mean that there are plenty of 1.5-year-old animals for hunters. The overall mast conditions should be favorable. In addition, DNR has been conducting spotlight counts in many counties and have observed many large-racked animals for hunters to pursue.

Sunday hunting is legal in the following 14 counties on private land only: Boone, Brooke, Clay, Hancock, Jefferson, Lincoln, Logan, McDowell, Marshall, Mingo, Ohio, Wayne, Wetzel and Wyoming. The only Sunday that is open in these counties during the buck season is November 25. Hunters are reminded that deer gun seasons are closed in Logan, Mingo, McDowell and Wyoming counties.

Hunters are required to wear at least 400 square inches of blaze orange (about the size of a vest) as an outer garment for visibility and safety. Blaze orange camouflage patterns are legal as long as 400 square inches of blaze orange are displayed on the garment. A blaze orange hat is not required, but the hunter must have blaze orange visible from both the front and the back.

Hunting licenses may be purchased online at any time and printed out on a home computer printer. Go to the goWILD! Web site at www.wvhunt.com, fill out the application, and purchase it over a secure server with a credit card.

Hunters who wish to donate deer meat or dollars to the Hunters Helping the Hungry program, which distributes deer meat through the Mountaineer Food Bank and the Huntington Food Bank, should call 304-558-2771 or visit the DNR website at www.wvdnr.gov to find a participating meat processor.

Contact Information

Curtis Taylor, Wildlife Resources Section Chief
304-558-2771
DNR.Wildlife@wv.gov