West Virginia Controlled Deer Hunt

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Applications are being accepted for the controlled deer hunt scheduled for November 16, 17 and 18, 2009, at Stonewall Resort State Park, located in Lewis County near Weston, West Virginia.

"Monitoring of the deer population and subsequent consequent surveys conducted by the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR) wildlife and parks personnel, "revealed a high deer density on the state park property at Stonewall," according to Sam England, Park Superintendent. "The excessive whitetail deer population damages places negative consequences for vegetation, creates environmental imbalance within the park and subjects the herd to increasingly poor browse and health conditions." The high population of deer creates environmental imbalance within the park and subjects the herd to increasingly poor browse and health conditions."

Cooperative efforts between the Parks and Recreation, Wildlife, and Law Enforcement sections of DNR and Benchmark Management Company, which operates the facilities for the state, were successful in conducting a controlled hunt in 2008.

"We were able to successfully use a controlled hunt as a method of deer management in a public setting last year; however, history has shown that multiple successive hunts are necessary to reduce the population to appropriate levels," according to Frank Jezioro, Director of the Division of Natural Resources. "The result will be good and responsible wildlife management that a controlled deer hunt can produce."

The application and instructions for the Stonewall controlled hunt are posted on the DNR Web page at www.wvdnr.gov under Hunting, Stonewall Controlled Hunt.

Applications also are available at all DNR district offices; DNR Operations Center in Elkins; DNR Offices in Building 74 Capitol Complex in South Charleston; WV State Park and Forest offices; the WV Wildlife Center at French Creek and at Stonewall Resort state park office. Applications are two-sided with the application on one side and information on the reverse. Hunters also may complete the application online; however, applications must be printed, then signed and dated and mailed. Completed applications must be mailed to the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, P.O. Box 67, Elkins, WV, prior to August 28, 2009. A random selection of approximately 50 hunters for each day will be made from applications received. Successful applicants will be notified after October 1, 2009. For additional information contact Stonewall Resort State Park at (304) 269-0524, or District 3 DNR Office at (304) 924-6211.

Controlled Hunt Application Information

The controlled hunt at Stonewall Resort is open to West Virginia residents and holders of West Virginia Lifetime Licenses. Hunters may apply for a permit to participate in the Stonewall Resort State Park Controlled Deer Hunt to be conducted November 16, 17 and 18, 2009.

Hunters may apply individually or as part of a two-person party and may use any weapon legal for deer hunting in West Virginia. One (1) deer may be taken by each hunter. Only antlerless deer may be taken during this hunt, except that each day of the hunt an on-site lottery will be held which will allow up to four (4) hunters to hunt a deer of either sex. Instructions on the application must be followed. Applications must be signed, legible, complete, and postmarked by August 28, 2009.

All applicants must designate the type of weapon (firearm or bow) and hunting method (free roaming or fixed stand) to be used on the application. All persons applying as a party must hunt with the same type of weapon (firearm or bow) and use the same method of hunting (free roaming or fixed stand). Party hunters which include a Class Q hunter must hunt from the same Class Q stand.

Each hunter must possess a valid West Virginia Hunting License (or be legally exempt from purchasing a license) on the day of the hunt.

The hunt area is divided into two zones; a Fixed Stand Zone and a Free Roaming Zone. In the Fixed Stand Zone hunters must hunt from elevated tree stands (ladder or self-climbing) which they must provide, placed in designated trees. In the Free Roaming Zone hunters may hunt from the ground or from portable tree stands and they are not limited to stationary location. A safety belt is required to be worn while hunting from an elevated stand. Scopes are allowed on all legal firearms.

There will be no waiting list or walk-ons. There will be approximately 55 applications for each hunt day randomly drawn in advance. Successful applicants will be contacted with more detailed information regarding this controlled hunt. Deer harvested do not count against a hunter's annual deer season bag limit.

West Virginia Division of Natural Resources hunting regulations will apply to this hunt. Hunting contributes to wildlife conservation while maintaining a healthy deer herd population.