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WVDNR’s New Exam Stations

The Free Press WV

The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources is reminding hunters that adult deer harvested Monday and Tuesday in Upshur County must be brought to an examination station for carcass examination by DNR personnel.

DNR personnel will be at six locations between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. to conduct examinations. Hunters must still check their deer by telephone, internet or at a license agent, using their DNR ID numbers. Hunter cooperation is essential to the success of deer management, and all hunters are encouraged to have a safe and successful deer firearm season.


Uphsur County stations:

  • Queens Community Building — (junction of Jackson Fork and Tallmansville Roads)
  • Queens; West Virginia State Wildlife Center — WV 20, French Creek
  • Hodgesville Volunteer Fire Department — WV 20, Hodgesville
  • Mountaineer Mart — Old Weston Road off U.S. 33, Buckhannon
  • Tractor Supply — WV 20, Tennerton; Dean’s Variety Mart (beside old 7-11 Store) — Junction of Mount Nebo Road and U.S. 33.

Atlantic Coast Pipeline

The Free Press WV

The Atlantic Coast Pipeline cleared another regulatory hurdle on Friday when the U.S. Forest Service gave approval for the pipeline to be built through the George Washington National Forest and the Monongahela National Forest.

The decision received applause from pipeline developer Dominion Energy and criticism by environmental groups.

The $5.1 billion Atlantic Coast Pipeline would span 600 miles from Harrison County and across Lewis, Upshur, Randolph and Pocahontas counties in West Virginia through Virginia and into North Carolina. It’s a project by Dominion Energy, Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural Gas and Southern Company Gas.

The project has gained approvals from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, but the pipeline still lacks crucial water permits from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and from West Virginia, Virginia and North Carolina.

The Forest Service, in a statement, said its decision supports federal policies emphasizing energy infrastructure, jobs, economic growth and the agency’s efforts to provide for multiple use.

The Forest Service said amendments in the plan would provide for continued social, economic, and ecological sustainability of the George Washington National Forest and the Monongahela National Forest.

Environmental groups contend the Atlantic Coast Pipeline will cause environmental harm by cutting a new right-of-way through the Monongahela and George Washington National Forests.

“This unnecessary new right of way is one of the many reasons Sierra Club opposes the pipeline,” the Sierra Club wrote in a response to the Forest Service’s decision.

Environmental groups contended an impact statement by the Forest Service failed to include critical information about impacts to wildlife habitat, endangered species, sedimentation, and other issues.

“We believe this decision is based on seriously deficient and incorrect information,” stated Lew Freeman, chairman of the Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance, a coalition of 52 conservation and environmental organizations in Virginia and West Virginia.

“The action imperils some of the nation’s most treasured natural resources and reflects a rush to judgment that is contrary to the standards of deliberation that we have a right to expect from the Forest Service. The decision should be strongly challenged.”

Pipeline developer Dominion Energy released a statement saying the Forest Service’s decision is evidence of a responsible way to develop infrastructure while preserving the environment and protecting natural resources.

“The agency’s favorable decision was reached after more than three years of careful study, meaningful engagement with the public and other agencies, and extensive field surveys by expert wildlife biologists,” Dominion stated.

“Through close consultation with the agency, the project has made numerous adjustments to avoid environmentally sensitive areas in the national forests, including sensitive wildlife habitats. Total mileage in the national forests was also reduced by more than one-third.”

~~  Brad McElhinny ~~

Police Urge Public to Report Game Law Violations

The Free Press WV

As buck season opens on Monday, more than 250,000 hunters will be in the woods. Chances are pretty good, somebody will have a complaint.

Saturday, on Metronews’ West Virginia Outdoors, Natural Resources Police Lt. Jerry Payne noted several significant ways to report game law violations.

You can always call your county 9.1.1 center and request an officer’s assistance. You can call your local DNR district office. You can find the numbers on page two of the hunting regulations.

There’s a reporting feature on the DNR Website.

A significant way a lot of the contact with law enforcement happens today is via social media. The Natural Resources Police gain significant information from those who communicate via Facebook and Twitter.

Finally, you can send a text and report a violation or complaint. Send the text to 844-TIP-DNR.

The Law Enforcement section issues the following recommendations:

–Observe and write down all of the information concerning the violation.
–Don’t confront the violator.
–Contact the Natural Resources police as soon as possible.

Facts about West Virginia Buck Season

The Free Press WV

The West Virginia buck firearms season starts Monday, November 20 and run through December 02. Here are a few facts about the season:

  • Buck firearm season is open in all counties except Logan, Mingo, McDowell and Wyoming.

  • Sunday hunting will be legal in all 55 counties on private land only for those with written permission. The only Sunday that falls within the two-week buck gun season is Nov. 26.

  • Purple paint may be used to post private land.

  • All deer harvested by hunters in Hampshire, Mason and Upshur counties on Nov. 20 and 21 are required to be brought to a designated Biological Game Examination Station. For station locations, consult page 12 of the 2017-2018 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Summary.

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

  • Hunters should review the 2017-2018 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Summary for detailed instructions concerning bag limits and season dates. The regulations are available at license agents, DNR district offices and online at www.wvdnr.gov.

  • All hunters must have an official DNR ID number to check game. The ID number can be found on annual hunting licenses. They also can be obtained by calling 304-558-2758 or logging on to [wvhunt.com]wvhunt.com and providing the requested information. Game may be checked by telephone at 1-844-WVCHECK, online at [wvhunt.com]http://www.wvhunt.com or at any hunting license agent. All field tagging, transporting and possession requirements still apply.

  • Hunters may substitute a bow or a crossbow during the buck firearms season.

  • The bag limit during the two-week buck firearms 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, crossbow and firearms seasons combined.

  • A hunter may harvest two deer per day, but only one antlered deer may be harvested per day. The first deer does not have to be electronically registered before harvesting the second deer in the same day. However, all deer legally harvested must be electronically registered and legally tagged before hunting during a subsequent day.

  • The last day to purchase an additional buck deer gun tag (Class RG/RRG Stamp) is Sunday, November 19. Class RG and Class RRG additional buck stamps can only be used to take an additional antlered deer during buck firearms season. Unused Class RG and Class RRG stamps may not be used in antlerless or muzzleloader seasons.

  • Fifty-one counties are open to concurrent antlerless deer season hunting during the traditional buck firearms season. Class N (resident) or Class NN (nonesident) stamps to hunt during the antlerless deer season can be purchased at any time. Antlerless deer firearms season opens Nov. 20 on private land and specified public lands. Hunters should consult the 2017-2018 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Summary for specific antlerless deer season regulations in each county and wildlife management area.

  • A bear firearms season without dogs will run concurrent with the buck firearms season in 35 counties, eight of which are by permit only. Consult the 2017-2018 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Summary for specific counties.

  • According to Southwick Associates, hunting contributes $500 million each year to the state’s economy. 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. Hunting is estimated to be responsible for 5,400 jobs and $35 million in sales taxes on goods and services spent in West Virginia.

  • In 2016, the traditional bucks-only firearm season harvest of antlered bucks was 46,071, a decrease of 24 percent from the 2015 harvest. This is 15 percent less than the five-year average.

  • WVDNR predicts the buck harvest will be close to than it was in 2016. Increased oak mast, especially white oak, will have deer spread out over the landscape and less visible in fields and less susceptible to bait. Several counties were positive for Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease (EHD), which may have a localized impact on the population.

  • 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 online to 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 money to the Hunters Helping the Hungry program, which distributes deer meat through the Mountaineer Food Bank and the Facing Hunger Food Bank, should call 304.924.6211 or visit the DNR website at www.wvdnr.gov to find a participating meat processor.
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