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Old 11-03-2010, 09:32 AM   #1
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help deciphering some regs (VA)

I live in Prince William County, VA. because there is absolutely nowhere to hunt there except MCB Quantico, that is where i usually go. but this year over break from school I am going to attempt to hunt on some WMA's and am trying to figure out what i can use and what I can shoot and the more i read the more i get confused. Hopefully some of you more experienced with the VA regs can help me out.

Archery Deer Seasons

Early Archery Season

October 2-November 12: Statewide
Late Archery Seasons

November 29-January 1:
  • In all areas west of the Blue Ridge (except Clarke and Floyd counties and on private lands in Frederick County).
  • In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Amherst (west of Rt. 29), Bedford, Campbell (west of Norfolk Southern Railroad), and Nelson (west of Rt. 151).
  • On the Chester F. Phelps WMAand on National Forest lands in Frederick County.
December 1-January 1:
  • In the cities of Chesapeake, Suffolk (east of the Dismal Swamp line), and Virginia Beach.
December 13-January 1:
  • In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Floyd, Franklin, Henry, and Patrick.
Archery Either-Sex Deer Hunting

  • Deer of either-sex may be taken full season during the early and late archery deer seasons, unless otherwise noted below.
    • Only antlered deer may be taken during the early and late archery deer seasons on PALS (Public Access Lands) in Dickenson County.
Early Antlerless-Only Archery Season

During this season only antlerless deer may be taken.
September 4-October 1

  • In Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William counties (except on Department-owned lands).
Bowhunters Needed for Survey

The Department has an ongoing statewide bowhunter survey to obtain information on bear, deer, turkey, small game, and furbearer populations. The deer data collected provides important information relative to deer population trends, adult sex ratios, and recruitment. The Department would like to increase the number and distribution of cooperators across the Commonwealth.
If you would like to participate in this survey, please contact Mike Fies with your mailing address at mike.fies@dgif.virginia.gov.
Participants will receive an annual survey form to complete during the early archery deer season and a copy of the results after they are compiled. The Department appreciates your interest and cooperation.

Urban Archery Deer Seasons

During this season only antlerless deer may be taken.
September 4-October 1 and January 3-March 26
  • Within the incorporated limits of the cities of Colonial Heights, Danville, Emporia, Franklin, Fredericksburg, Lynchburg, Martinsville, Radford, Richmond, Staunton, Winchester and the towns of Altavista, Amherst, Blacksburg, Blackstone, Christiansburg, Farmville, Halifax, Independence, Kenbridge, Pearisburg, Pulaski, Purcellville, Richlands, Rocky Mount, Saltville, Stuart, Tazewell, West Point, and in Fairfax County.
  • Lists of properties available for hunting are not maintained by the Department or local governments.
  • Go to the Urban Archery Season page on this website for local restrictions and other urban archery information.
Legal Methods and Restrictions During Archery Deer Seasons

Special restrictions may apply during this season. See Legal Use of Firearms and Archery Equipment and Local Firearms Ordinances for details.
  • Archery tackle (including crossbows) only.
  • Broadhead widths must be at least 7/8-inch wide or expand upon impact to 7/8-inch.
  • Bows must be capable of propelling a broadhead arrow at least 125 yards.
  • It is unlawful to use explosive head arrows or arrows to which any drug, chemical or toxic substance has been added.
  • It is unlawful to use dogs.
  • It is unlawful to have a firearm in possession except that a muzzleloading firearm, as defined in the muzzleloader deer seasons section, may also be in possession when and where there is an overlap with a muzzleloading deer season where deer hunting with a rifle or muzzleloading firearm is permitted.
Muzzleloader Deer Seasons

In all areas where hunting with a muzzleloading rifle is permitted.
Early Muzzleloader Season

October 30-November 12:
  • In all areas where deer hunting with a rifle or muzzleloading firearm is permitted unless noted in the season exception listed below.
  • Season Exceptions:
    • Closed in the cities of Chesapeake, Suffolk (east of the Dismal Swamp line), and Virginia Beach.
Either-sex Deer Hunting Days East of the Blue Ridge: October 30-November 12 (full season):
  • In all areas (including Occoneechee State Park) unless otherwise noted below.
  • November 6:
    • On State Forest lands, State Park lands (except Occoneechee State Park), Department-owned lands, and Philpott Reservoir.
  • Antlered deer only-no either-sex deer hunting days:
    • On National Forest lands in Amherst, Bedford and Nelson counties.
Either-sex Deer Hunting Days West of the Blue Ridge:
  • October 30-November 12 (full season):
    • On private lands in Carroll, Clarke, Floyd, Frederick, Grayson, Montgomery, Roanoke, Shenandoah, and Warren counties.
  • November 6:
    • On National Forest and Department-owned Lands in Bland, Carroll, Craig, Giles, Montgomery, Pulaski, Roanoke, and Wythe counties.
    • On private lands in Alleghany, Augusta, Bath, Bland, Botetourt, Craig, Giles, Highland, Page, Pulaski, Rockbridge, Rockingham (except on private lands west of Routes 613 and 731), Scott, and Wythe counties.
  • Antlered deer only-no either-sex deer hunting days:
    • On National Forest and Department-owned Lands in Alleghany, Augusta, Bath, Botetourt, Dickenson, Frederick, Grayson, Highland, Lee, Page, Rockbridge, Rockingham, Russell, Scott, Shenandoah, Smyth, Tazewell, Warren, Washington, and Wise counties.
    • On private lands in Buchanan, Dickenson, Lee, Rockingham (west of Routes 613 and 731), Russell, Smyth, Tazewell, Washington, and Wise counties.
    • On Channels State Forest, Grayson Highlands State Park, PALS (Public Access Lands) in Dickenson County, and Flannagan Reservoir.
Late Muzzleloader Season East of the Blue Ridge

December 11-January 1:
In the counties (including the cites and towns within) of Amherst (west of Route. 29), Bedford, Campbell (west of Norfolk Southern Railroad), Franklin, Henry, Nelson (west of Route 151), and Patrick, and in the cities of Chesapeake, Suffolk (east of the Dismal Swamp line), and Virginia Beach.
Either-sex Deer Hunting Days East of the Blue Ridge:
  • December 11-January 1 (full season):
    • In the counties of Amherst (west of Route 29 except on National Forest lands), Bedford (except on National Forest lands), Campbell (west of Norfolk Southern Railroad), Franklin, Henry, Nelson (west of Route 151 except on National Forest lands), and Patrick.
  • December 27-January 1:
    • In the cities of Chesapeake, Suffolk (east of the Dismal Swamp line), and Virginia Beach.
  • January 1:
    • On National Forest lands in Amherst, Bedford, and Nelson counties.
This is the relevant information i am curious about http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/hunting...tions/deer.asp

Now i am planning on doing a lot of hunting on Phelps WMA, which is in Faquier County

If an archery season, which allows either sex, overlaps with a muzzleloader or rifle season, which are buck only, can i still shoot a doe with my bow or do i go by the buck only season?

The way i see it, it is still legal to shoot a doe if i use a bow but if i use a weapon i can only shoot bucks. Is this correct?
thanks for helpin. im attempting not to get a ticket and living in NOVA there is nothing to do except hunt over breaks so i just want to get all this settled before i go.

And can anyone explain why they make these so damn hard to understand instead of just saying These are the places where you can shoot what and when....
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Old 11-03-2010, 09:43 AM   #2
takern [OP] takern is offline
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Originally Posted by Krookz View Post
You can use bow in va, as long as its a firearm season. Because its considered a firearm. I asked a park ranger about this a few years ago myself.

If its either sex, which is pretty much every day except in certain locations. Drop what you see, if you see fit. I tend to leave doe's with fawns alone. Everything else I drop, its hard enough with the limited space we have in the WMA's to see anything. There's less and less hunting area every year which sucks for us without land.
so if i am huntin with a bow in a firearms season i can kill a doe even if it is buck only??

i might have to take a trip to the ranger station later once i get off work to figure this out. and yeah hunting sucks around here unless you own land or know people that do that will let you use it. i can't wait to get out of here
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Old 11-03-2010, 09:51 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Krookz View Post
Like I said. Its either sex, unless specifically noted not to be in a certain area, or at a certain time. A bow is considered a firearm, so you have to treat it as such.

If you scroll past the muzzleloader information. Firearm info is there as well. Its all color coded on a map. I live south of Richmond and it blows. We have to travel over an hour to get a decent chance at anything.
alright thanks for the info. i dont know who created these lists but i need to meet them. i bet they could turn a 2 page paper into a 10 page paper as confusing as they are
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Old 11-03-2010, 04:05 PM   #4
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I hunt a lot around Prince William as well - out in Haymarket.

As far as using a bow during other seasons - during general firearms season you must follow the general firearms regulations. So if you are using your bow during general firearms and it is buck only, you cannot shoot a doe.

All other seasons (archery and early/late muzzleloader) you can follow regular bow season regulations (i.e. buck or doe).
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Old 11-03-2010, 09:31 PM   #5
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I hunt a lot around Prince William as well - out in Haymarket.

As far as using a bow during other seasons - during general firearms season you must follow the general firearms regulations. So if you are using your bow during general firearms and it is buck only, you cannot shoot a doe.

All other seasons (archery and early/late muzzleloader) you can follow regular bow season regulations (i.e. buck or doe).
is there any public land there? or is it all private?
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Old 11-03-2010, 09:53 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by takern View Post
is there any public land there? or is it all private?
It's all private land around Haymarket. Don't over-look Quantico though, there are some monster bucks down there. Most of the WMA areas (Thompsons/Phelps) are really crowded during muzzleloader and rifle seasons. Don't forget about the George Washington National Forest that is only about 80 minutes west of Prince William. There are thousands & thousands of acres of public land out there...and it is not hard to find deer if you put in a little leg work. I actually hunt GWNF more than most private land areas that I have access to - I love hunting in the mountains and over the last decade or so the number of people that I have seen hunting on National Forest lands has dropped dramatically and the number of nice bucks that I have seen has increased dramatically.
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Old 11-03-2010, 10:12 PM   #7
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It's all private land around Haymarket. Don't over-look Quantico though, there are some monster bucks down there. Most of the WMA areas (Thompsons/Phelps) are really crowded during muzzleloader and rifle seasons. Don't forget about the George Washington National Forest that is only about 80 minutes west of Prince William. There are thousands & thousands of acres of public land out there...and it is not hard to find deer if you put in a little leg work. I actually hunt GWNF more than most private land areas that I have access to - I love hunting in the mountains and over the last decade or so the number of people that I have seen hunting on National Forest lands has dropped dramatically and the number of nice bucks that I have seen has increased dramatically.
ok thanks for that info. quantico is where i usually hunt since its only 15 minutes from my house. taken a few does and a 6pt out of there. gwnf is a little bit of a drive but for a day or two of huntin and campin in the truck i reckon i could do it. i might try and get down to GWNF and hunt there over christmas break and thanksgiving if the parents will let me leave the house after not having been there for like 3 months. thanks for the info
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Old 11-08-2010, 06:28 PM   #8
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if your hunting quantico with a bow you can go qualify for a couple areas that are only for bow hunters. there is a also a place on fleetwood (marrimac farms) but you have to get into a lottery for that. my buddy always kills atleast one nice buck in quantico every year.
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Old 11-08-2010, 09:45 PM   #9
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if your hunting quantico with a bow you can go qualify for a couple areas that are only for bow hunters. there is a also a place on fleetwood (marrimac farms) but you have to get into a lottery for that. my buddy always kills atleast one nice buck in quantico every year.
i qualify for mainside every year but i never hunt it. in highschool i could never get there by the time it closed between class and track and such. i wouldnt even know where to look for deer. i reckon its just somethin thats kinda fun to do. "qualified bow hunter"
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