Changes in VA Urban Deer Season

Virginia DeerAs opening day for Deer Season in VA, there is an important to note is that during the early urban antlerless season which opens Saturday September 7, firearms will be allowed.

Based on the regulations on blaze orange, since firearms will be used during the early season, all hunters, including archery hunters, are required to wear blaze orange during the early urban season and again when regular firearms season opens through the end of the late antlerless season in March. [Read more…]

Virginia House Committee Tables Deer, Elk, and Bear Damage Bill

Sportsmen should thank Committee members for voting to stop a bill that would have allowed for the unlimited killing of deer, elk and bear.

Senate Bill 868, introduced by Senator Richard Stuart (R- Montross), would have required the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries to issue agricultural damage kill permits to any person claiming that deer, elk, or bear were causing agricultural damage without first investigating if any damage actually occurred.

“This bill was pushing through at a break-neck pace and would have had a devastating effect on the state’s deer, elk, and bear populations,” said Rob Sexton, U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance vice president for government affairs.  “Sportsmen should thank members of the House Committee for putting the breaks on this bill and for protecting professional management of the state’s deer, elk, and bear populations.” [Read more…]

Virginia Bill Poses Threat To Deer Populations

Alert: Virginia Bill Poses Serious Threat To Deer, Elk, And Bear Populations

Vote Possible on Wednesday

A bill in Virginia threatens to allow large numbers of deer, elk, and bear to be killed within the state with little control by the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

Take Action!  Virginia Sportsmen should contact members of the House Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources Committee and ask them to oppose Senate Bill 868.  Tell them the bill is a serious threat to deer, elk, and bear populations within the state.  A list of the Committee members and their contact information can be found below.

Sportsmen should plan to contact them before the Committee meets this coming Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. [Read more…]

Virginia to Receive Grants from Elk Foundation

MISSOULA, Mont.–A trio of conservation education and hunting heritage projects in Virginia have been selected to receive grants from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation in 2010.

The new RMEF funding, totaling $1,500, will help fund regional and statewide programs.

“Elk have always been an inspiration to our volunteers and members in Virginia, even before elk restoration was making local headlines. Since 1996, RMEF banquets and fundraisers have supported many kinds of conservation projects all across elk habitat, in western as well as eastern states, plus some 30 different projects in Virginia with a combined value of more than $150,000,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. [Read more…]

Virginia to Restore Elk; RMEF Pledges Support

MISSOULA, Mont.–The board of directors of the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries has voted to restore a wild elk herd in part of the state, and the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation has responded by pledging support for the effort. Possibilities could include RMEF funding assistance, technical expertise and/or volunteer labor.

The state’s restoration plan calls for relocating 75 elk into Buchanan County in southwest Virginia. Releases could begin by 2012. Biologists are hoping for a sustainable elk population and a limited elk-hunting season within four years. County officials are expecting significant economic and tourism benefits similar to those in neighboring Kentucky, which launched its own restoration program over a decade ago and now boasts the largest elk herd east of the Rockies.

At an agency meeting on Aug. 17, RMEF volunteers and staff spoke passionately in favor of elk restoration, although several other organizations were opposed. The board voted unanimously to restore elk into Buchanan County, which strongly supported the concept.

“Hats off to the citizens of Virginia, and especially those of Buchanan County, who understand there is no higher calling in conservation than restoring a native game species to sustainable, hunt-able, balanced populations. For everyone who doesn’t understand it today, I believe you’ll be convinced over time that this was the right decision, the right thing to do, the right way to go about it,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO.

To be a part of this historic conservation effort in Virginia, join and support RMEF. Visit www.rmef.org and click “Attend an Event” to find fundraisers planned across the state. For additional information, call 800-CALL ELK or contact Chris Croy, RMEF regional director for Virginia, at 704-551-6223 or ccroy@rmef.org.

Elk Foundation Voices Support for Elk Restoration in Va.

MISSOULA, Mont.–The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation today voiced its official support for the concept of restoring elk populations in Virginia, and praised the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries for its research and analysis of five proposed alternatives for restoring a species native to the Old Dominion State.

“There is no higher calling in conservation than restoring a native game species to sustainable, hunt-able, balanced populations,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. “When the citizens of Wisconsin, Kentucky and Tennessee decided to bring elk back to those parts of their former range, we were there to help, and those successes are among the most rewarding and popular accomplishments in our organization’s history.”

Allen encouraged Virginians to get involved in the process. The public can comment on the agency’s proposals at a series of meetings and online by Aug. 1, 2010. [Read more…]

Results Favorable For Elk in Virginia

Bull ElkResults were favorable to elk in Virginia from yesterday’s Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Board meeting.

After about an hour of public comment, largely in opposition to the proposed regulation amendment (8 speaking against and 2 speaking in favor), the Board of Game and Inland Fisheries voted to table the proposed amendment that would have prohibited the hunting of Rocky Mountain elk in Virginia. [Read more…]

Outdoor Ethics Banquet

IWLA

The Loudoun County Chapter of the Izaak Walton League is holding its 20th Annual Loudoun County Outdoor Ethics Banquet on October 24th at Hamilton’s Harmony Hall.

Keynote speaker is Bob Duncan, Executive Director Virginia Game and Inland Fisheries.

Outdoor Exhibits and Displays, Auctions, Raffle, Annual Law Enforcement and Citizen Recognition, Meet Local Politicians and Dignitaries

Open to the public and Local Media.

Sponsored by Loudoun County Anti-Poaching Reward Fund and the Loudoun County Chapter – Izaak Walton League of America in cooperation with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

Contact O.E. Banquet for more information or tickets here!

Va. May Fill Its Own Hills with Rocky Mountain Elk

Bull ElkBy STEVE SZKOTAK (AP)

RICHMOND, Va.  More than 150 years after Virginia’s last native elk was killed, game officials may try to populate the state’s southwest corner with its bigger, buff-colored cousin the Rocky Mountain elk.

They say bringing back an elk subspecies could offer hunters another big-game animal and boost tourism in rugged southwest Virginia, but farmers fear it also could infect their livestock with diseases and damage crops.

As it happens, some elk have already arrived.

An estimated 125 to 150 Rocky Mountain elk have wandered into Virginia from Kentucky, where a restoration effort is well under way. That state is now home to more than 11,000 of the animals spread over 16 southern and southeastern counties. They graze on the reclaimed remnants of strip mines and attract hunters and tourists who want to glimpse an elk or hear its haunting bugle.

[Read more…]

YES VIRGINIA WE HAVE ELK!!!

hunting-life_logo

On August 18th, 2009 the Board of Directors of The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries voted today on a motion that will become 100% official at the October 22nd, 2009 board Meeting where it will be written into regulation that elk hunting in the Commonwealth of Virginia will not be allowed.

View the Podcast here!