Squirrel Season Opens October 8

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Squirrel season, the most popular small game hunting season in West Virginia , will open ½ hour before sunrise on Saturday, October 8. Hunting bushytails is a cherished tradition in West Virginia with hunters of all ages, sexes, and ethnic backgrounds taking to the woods in their pursuit.

“Beautiful fall colors, along with the mountain state's rugged natural charm, enhance the hunter's experience, and those who do it even once are usually hooked,” says Curtis Taylor, Wildlife Resources Section Chief for the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources.

Grey and fox squirrels are both legal with the daily bag limit being 6 in any combination of species. Although a little smaller, the grey squirrel is generally considered somewhat better table fare than the fox squirrel. Fox squirrels tend to occupy the edges of the forests while grays dwell deeper into the woods.

Squirrels are common throughout the state but are elusive enough to make for a challenging hunt. Mast (nut crop) this year is bountiful so bushytails probably won't be concentrated in any particular place. In poor mast years a favorite hunting technique is to locate a hickory or oak that has nuts and wait there. This year hunters will probably do better if they move around more. Squirrels have a very high reproductive capacity and, even considering the poor mast conditions of the last few years, there should be plenty of bushytails early in the season.