2002 Big Buck Contest

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The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, the West Virginia Izaak Walton League, and the West Virginia Bowhunters Association are again sponsoring the Big Buck Contest for deer taken between October 12 and December 31, 2002, according to Curtis I. Taylor, Chief of the Division of Natural Resources' Wildlife Resources Section.

"During this time, any hunter who bags a deer in West Virginia with antlers having eight or more points, a 26-inch beam length, and points that are more than eight inches long may have a qualifying buck," Taylor said. "Antlers will be measured according to the official scoring system for North American big game animals established by the Boone and Crockett Club for gun hunters and the Pope and Young Club for bowhunters."

Plaques will be awarded to four overall highest scores in gun typical and non-typical and bow typical and non-typical classes at the National Hunting and Fishing Day Celebration held at Stonewall Jackson State Park in September 2003. Gun hunters whose bucks score more than 140 points typical or 165 non-typical will receive certificates commemorating the entry of their buck into the WV Big Buck record keeping program. Bowhunters whose bucks score more than 125 points typical or 155 non-typical will also receive certificates.

There were 125 new entries into the Big Buck Records that were taken during the 2001 season. Twenty-four were taken by gun hunters and 101 were harvested by bowhunters. Bucks taken in previous years may still be scored for a certificate (if it meets the minimum score) and entry into the records.

Hunters wishing to have their deer scored for this contest should contact the closest official measurer through any DNR Wildlife District Office or the Elkins Operations Center; phone numbers and addresses are listed in the 2002-2003 Hunting & Trapping Regulations brochure. Appointments must be made for scoring trophies. Many hunters have their deer scored by official measurers during the WV Hunting and Fishing Show, held at the Charleston Civic Center in late January. Hunters will be required to read and sign a Fair Chase Affidavit and have their official Game Check Tag with the antlers.