Virginia.gov

Deer

General Information

Bag Limits

East of the Blue Ridge (except on National Forest lands in Amherst, Bedford, and Nelson counties)
The bag limit for deer shall be two a day, six a license year. Of the six deer limit, no more than three may be antlered deer and at least three must be antlerless deer (unless noted in the exception below).
  • The daily bag limit for deer shall be unlimited in Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Prince William counties (including the cities and towns within). However, no more than three antlered deer may be killed in a license year.
West of the Blue Ridge and on National Forest lands in Amherst, Bedford, and Nelson counties
The bag limit for deer shall be one a day and five a license year. Of the five-deer limit, no more than two may be antlered deer and at least three must be antlerless deer (unless noted in the exceptions below).
  • The bag limit for deer shall be two a day on private lands in Clarke, Frederick, Roanoke, Shenandoah, and Warren counties (including the cities and towns within).
  • Only one antlered buck having less than four antler points one inch or longer on one side of the antlers may be taken per license year in each of the following counties: Alleghany, Augusta, Bath, Highland, Rockbridge, Rockingham, or Shenandoah.

Earn a Buck (EAB)

For the purposes of this section, the term "license year" defines the period between July 1 and June 30 of the following year.

Arlington County (including the cities and towns within). During a license year, it shall be unlawful to take a second antlered deer in Arlington County prior to taking at least two antlerless deer in Arlington County, and it shall be unlawful to take a third antlered deer in Arlington County prior to taking at least three antlerless deer in Arlington County.

Bedford County on private lands (including the cities and towns within). During a license year, it shall be unlawful to take a second antlered deer on private lands in Bedford County prior to taking at least one antlerless deer on private lands in Bedford County, and it shall be unlawful to take a third antlered deer on private lands in Bedford County prior to taking at least two antlerless deer on private lands in Bedford County.

Clarke County on private lands (including the cities and towns within). During a license year, it shall be unlawful to take a second antlered deer on private lands in Clarke County prior to taking at least one antlerless deer on private lands in Clarke County.

Fairfax County (including the cities and towns within). During a license year, it shall be unlawful to take a second antlered deer in Fairfax County prior to taking at least two antlerless deer in Fairfax County, and it shall be unlawful to take a third antlered deer in Fairfax County prior to taking at least three antlerless deer in Fairfax County.

Frederick County on private lands (including the cities and towns within). During a license year, it shall be unlawful to take a second antlered deer on private lands in Frederick County prior to taking at least one antlerless deer on private lands in Frederick County.

Loudoun County (including the cities and towns within). During a license year, it shall be unlawful to take a second antlered deer in Loudoun County prior to taking at least two antlerless deer in Loudoun County, and it shall be unlawful to take a third antlered deer in Loudoun County prior to taking at least three antlerless deer in Loudoun County.

Prince William County except on Department of Defense (DOD) lands (including the cities and towns within). During a license year, it shall be unlawful to take a second antlered deer in Prince William County (except on DOD lands) prior to taking at least two antlerless deer in Prince William County (except on DOD lands), and it shall be unlawful to take a third antlered deer in Prince William County (except on DOD lands) prior to taking at least three antlerless deer in Prince William County (except on DOD lands).

Roanoke County on private lands (including the cities and towns within). During a license year, it shall be unlawful to take a second antlered deer on private lands in Roanoke County prior to taking at least one antlerless deer on private lands in Roanoke County.

Warren County on private lands (including the cities and towns within). During a license year, it shall be unlawful to take a second antlered deer on private lands in Warren County prior to taking at least one antlerless deer on private lands in Warren County.

For more information go to the Earn a Buck (EAB) Questions & Answers section.

Bag Limit Exceptions

  • Deer hunters, including those exempt from purchasing a license, on private land and authorized public lands may take more than the license-year bag limit of antlerless deer by using bonus deer permits or special permits (DCAP, DMAP, and DPOP).
  • DCAP, DMAP, and DPOP tags do not count against the daily or season bag limit.

Bonus Deer Permits

  • Are valid for one year from date of purchase.
  • Are valid for antlerless deer only.
  • Are valid only on private lands and authorized public lands.
  • Are valid only on designated either-sex deer hunting days.
  • Are valid during all archery, muzzleloader, and firearms deer seasons.
  • Allow deer to be taken in addition to the license year bag limit.
  • Do not allow the daily bag limit to be exceeded.
  • Are not valid on National Forest and Department-owned lands.
  • Are not valid in Buchanan, Dickenson, and Wise counties.
  • Come with no restriction on number that may be purchased and used.

Hunters for the Hungry

We hope you will consider joining with this innovative program to help feed the hungry. Hunters for the Hungry encourages successful hunters to donate deer that are surplus to their families needs at participating processing locations. Funds are raised to cover the costs of professional processing, then the venison is distributed to the needy across the Commonwealth. This past season 279,279 pounds of venison were distributed. This brings total distribution since 1991 to over 4.9 million pounds, nearly 20.9 million servings.

Hunters donating an entire deer are not required to pay any part of the processing fee. If you are asked to do so, please contact our office. However, if you desire to make a monetary contribution we encourage you to send it to our office at P.O. Box 304, Big Island, VA 24526. Legislation passed in 2003 in honor of program founder, David Horne, also gives hunters an opportunity to make a donation at the time they purchase their hunting license.

You can make a difference to the hungry and to the future of hunting in Virginia. For additional information and for a list of participating processors, please email: hunt4hungry@cs.com, visit the website at www.h4hungry.org, call 1-800-352-HUNT (4868), or write to P.O. Box 304, Big Island, VA 24526.

Tree Stand Safety Guidelines

  • Use a full-body safety harness to secure yourself to the tree. Stay attached whenever you are off the ground. Minimize slack in the tether so that if you fall, it will not be very far. This reduces the risk of injury and may allow you to climb back into your stand. Hanging in a harness for a long time may cause irreversible injury or death. Have a plan for selfrescue.
  • Never climb with equipment; use a haul line to get your unloaded gun or bow into and out of the tree stand. Crossbows may be raised while cocked, but should never be loaded with an arrow until you are securely in the stand and ready to hunt. It can be dangerous to try to cock a crossbow while in a tree.
  • Keep manufactured tree stands in good working condition. Always follow the manufacturer's instructions carefully.
  • Many falls occur because of the failure of homemade stands, especially as they age. It is best to avoid them.
  • While most manufactured tree stands are safe if used properly, they are occasionally found to be defective and recalled. To find out if your stand has been recalled, check the Consumer Product Safety Commission website.

Antlered and Antlerless Deer

Deer Tags

  • Either-sex deer tags (commonly called "buck" tags) may be used on antlered or antlerless deer.
  • Antlerless-only deer tags (commonly called "doe" tags) may only be used on antlerless deer.

Antlered and Antlerless Deer

Antlered Deer

  • Antlered deer must have antlers visible above the hairline.
  • An antlered deer must be tagged with an either-sex deer tag.

Antler Point Restrictions

  • Alleghany, Augusta, Bath, Highland, Rockbridge, Rockingham, or Shenandoah Counties: Only one antlered buck having less than four antler points one inch or longer on one side of the antlers may be taken per license year in each of the counties listed above.
  • Fairystone and Featherfin WMAs: On the Quality Deer Management Area of the Fairystone WMA and Featherfin WMA a legal antlered deer is a deer with at least four antler points, 1 inch or longer, on one side.

Antlerless Deer

  • Antlerless deer may only be taken during designated either-sex deer hunting days during the archery season(s), muzzleloading season(s), and firearms season(s). Youth deer hunters see Youth and Apprentice Deer Hunting Day and Youth Antlerless Deer Regulation provisions below.
  • Antlerless deer (does, button bucks, and shed-antlered bucks) may be tagged with an antlerless-only deer tag or an either-sex deer tag.
  • Button bucks, male fawns approximately six months old, are considered antlerless deer. The hair covered bumps on a button buck's head are not antlers. They are the pedicels from which the antlers will grow the next year.
  • Antlered deer that have shed their antlers, usually in late December or early January, are also considered antlerless deer. When checking a shed-antlered buck by telephone or Internet, it should be checked as an antlered deer with zero antler points.

Youth Antlerless Deer Regulation

Resident or nonresident deer hunters 15 years of age and under may take one antlerless deer per license year on days other than designated either-sex deer hunting days during the muzzleloading seasons or the firearms seasons in all counties that have at least one either-sex deer hunting day during the firearms deer season. This regulation applies to all private and public lands (National Forest, State Forests, WMAs, etc.) statewide (except on public and private lands in Buchanan, Dickenson, and Wise counties). This regulation is in addition to either-sex deer hunting days. For example, if a youth deer hunter, 15 years of age or younger, killed one or more antlerless deer on designated either-sex deer hunting days, he or she could still take one antlerless deer on a day not designated an either-sex day.

Youth and Apprentice Deer Hunting Day

September 28

  • Statewide.
  • Resident and nonresident youth hunters 15 years of age and under and holders of a valid apprentice hunting license, when in compliance with all applicable laws and licenses, may hunt when accompanied and directly supervised by an adult who has a valid Virginia hunting license or is exempt from purchasing a hunting license. Nonresident youth of any age need to have the appropriate licenses.
  • Deer of either sex may be taken.
  • Antlerless deer taken on the youth and apprentice deer hunting day are in addition to an antlerless deer taken under the youth antlerless deer regulation and on either-sex deer hunting days.
  • Deer harvested by youth or apprentice hunters count against their daily and season bag limit.
  • Blaze orange requirements and exceptions for firearms deer season are in effect (see General Hunting Regulations).
  • Deer hunting with dogs is prohibited, except that tracking dogs are allowed (see Hunting with Dogs).
  • Adult hunters accompanying youth or apprentice deer hunters:
    • do not need a bear, deer, turkey license.
    • shall not carry or discharge a firearm.
    • shall maintain close visual and verbal contact with and provide adequate direction to the youth or apprentice hunter.

Archery Deer Seasons

Early Archery Season

October 5 through November 15: Statewide

Late Archery Seasons

December 2 through January 4:

  • 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 Route 29), Bedford, and Nelson (west of Route 151).
  • On the Chester F. Phelps WMA and on National Forest lands in Frederick County.

December 2 through January 4:

  • In the cities of Chesapeake, Suffolk (east of the Dismal Swamp line), and Virginia Beach.

December 16 through January 4:

  • 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.

Late Antlerless-Only Archery Season

During this season only antlerless deer may be taken.

March 31, 2014 through April 26, 2014

  • In Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Prince William counties (including the cities and towns within).

Bowhunters Needed for Survey

The Department has an ongoing statewide bowhunter survey to obtain information on bear, deer, turkey, small game, and furbearer populations. 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.

To participate, please contact Mike Fies with your mailing address at mike.fies@dgif.virginia.gov.

Urban Archery Deer Seasons

During this season only antlerless deer may be taken.

September 7 through October 4 and January 6, 2014 through March 29, 2014

  • Within the incorporated limits of the cities of Chesapeake (except on Department- owned lands), Colonial Heights, Danville, Emporia, Franklin, Fredericksburg, Galax, Hopewell, Lexington, Lynchburg, Martinsville, Radford, Richmond, Staunton, Suffolk, and Winchester; and in the towns of Altavista, Amherst, Bedford, Blacksburg, Blackstone, Christiansburg, Farmville, Halifax, Independence, Irvington, Kenbridge, Pearisburg, Pulaski, Richlands, Rocky Mount, Saltville, Smithfield, Stuart, Tazewell, and West Point; and in the counties of Chesterfield, Fairfax, James City, Roanoke (except on National Forest and Department- owned lands), and York.
  • Archery or crossbow deer hunters hunting during the early urban archery deer season are required to wear blaze orange on the Youth and Apprentice Deer Hunting Day Saturday, September 28. For exceptions to the blaze orange requirement see page 18.
  • 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.
  • All other "normal" deer regulations apply (e.g., daily and season bag limits, tagging and checking, DMAP, DCAP, EAB, special antler restrictions, etc.)

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, except that dogs may be used to track wounded or dead deer (see Hunting with 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. (See exception for valid concealed handgun permit holders).

Muzzleloader Deer Seasons

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

Note: Deer hunters west of the Blue Ridge Mountains may take both of their season limit of two antlered deer during the early muzzleloading season.

Early Muzzleloader Season

November 2 through November 15:

  • There is no early muzzleloading season in the cities of Chesapeake, Virginia Beach, or Suffolk (east of the Dismal Swamp line) since it occurs during the general firearms season.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days East of the Blue Ridge: November 2 through November 15 (full season):

  • In all areas (including Occoneechee State Park) unless otherwise noted below.
  • November 9:
    • 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:

  • November 2 through November 15 (full season):
    • On private lands in Carroll, Clarke, Floyd, Frederick, Grayson, Montgomery, Roanoke, Shenandoah, and Warren counties.
  • November 9:
    • 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, Taze well, 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 14 through January 4:

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Amherst (west of Route 29), Bedford, 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 14 through January 4 (full season):
    • In the counties of Amherst (west of Route 29 except on National Forest lands), Bedford (except on National Forest lands), Franklin, Henry, Nelson (west of Route 151 except on National Forest lands), and Patrick and the cities of Chesapeake, Suffolk (east of the Dismal Swamp line), and Virginia Beach.
  • January 4:
    • On National Forest lands in Amherst, Bedford, and Nelson counties.

Late Muzzleloader Season West of the Blue Ridge

December 14 through January 4:

Season Exception:

  • Closed in Clarke County and on private lands in Frederick County.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days West of the Blue Ridge:

  • December 14 through January 4 (full season):
    • On private lands in Carroll, Floyd, Grayson, Montgomery, Roanoke, Shenandoah, and Warren counties.
  • December 30 through January 4:
    • On private lands in Augusta, Bland, Botetourt, Craig, Giles, Page, Pulaski, Rockbridge, Rockingham (except on private lands west of Routes 613 and 731), and Wythe counties.
    • On National Forest and Department owned lands in Carroll, Craig, Bland, Giles, Montgomery, Pulaski, Roanoke, and Wythe counties.
  • January 4:
    • On private lands in Alleghany, Bath, Dickenson (north of Route 83), Highland, Lee, Rockingham (west of Routes 613 and 731), Russell, Scott, Smyth, Tazewell, Washington, and Wise counties.
    • On National Forest and Department owned lands in Alleghany, Augusta, Bath, Botetourt, Dickenson (north of Route 83), Frederick, Grayson, Highland, Lee, Page, Rockbridge, Rockingham, Russell, Scott, Shenandoah, Smyth, Tazewell, Warren, Washington, and Wise.
    • On Channels State Forest, Grayson Highlands State Park, and Flannagan Reservoir.
  • Antlered deer only—no either-sex deer hunting days:
    • On private lands in Buchanan and Dickenson (south of Route 83).
    • On PALS (Public Access Lands) in Dickenson County.

Legal Methods and Restrictions During Muzzleloader Deer Seasons

Special restrictions apply to specific fire arms use during this season. See Legal Use of Firearms and Archery Equipment and Local Firearms Ordinances for details.

  • Only muzzleloading firearms, .45 caliber or larger, loaded from the muzzle of the gun.
  • Muzzleloading firearms must be single shot, capable of firing only a single bullet or saboted bullet (.38 caliber or larger).
  • Flintlock, percussion, or electronic ignitions are permitted.
  • It is unlawful to have in immediate possession any firearm other than a muzzleloading firearm while hunting with a muzzleloader (see exception for valid concealed handgun permit holders).
  • It is unlawful to use muzzleloading pistols.
  • Must use at least 50 grains of black powder or black powder equivalent.
  • Smokeless powder is allowed in muzzleloading firearms designed for it. Never use smokeless powder in a muzzleloading firearm that is not specifically designed for it.
  • Scopes are permitted.
  • For the purposes of transportation in a vehicle, muzzleloading firearms are considered "unloaded" when all powder has been removed from the flashpan, or the percussion cap, primer, or battery has been removed from the firearm.
  • It is unlawful to hunt deer with dogs, except that dogs may be used to track wounded or dead deer (see Hunting with Dogs)
  • It is lawful to carry archery tackle when and where there is an overlap with a deer archery and muzzleloading season.
  • Deer of either sex may be taken full season during the muzzleloading seasons within the incorporated limits of any city or town in the Commonwealth that allows deer hunting except in the counties of Buchanan, Dickenson, and Wise and only with the weapons (archery tackle and/or muzzleloaders) authorized by each individual city or town.

Firearms Deer Seasons

November 16 through 30

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Amherst (west of Rt. 29), Bedford*, Botetourt, Carroll, Craig, Giles, Grayson, Montgomery, Nelson (west of Rt. 151), Pulaski, Roanoke*, Shenandoah, Warren*, and Wythe. (*denotes EAB county)

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days:

  • November 16 through 30 (full season): In all areas unless otherwise noted below.
    • November 23 and November 30: On National Forest lands and Department- owned lands in Carroll and Roanoke counties and on National Forest lands in Craig, Giles, Montgomery, Pulaski, and Wythe counties and on Big Survey WMA.
    • November 30: On National Forest lands in Amherst, Bedford, Botetourt, Nelson, Shenandoah, and Warren counties.
    • Antlered deer only-no either-sex deer hunting days: On National Forest lands In Grayson County and on portions of Grayson Highlands State Park. Special Youth Antlerless Deer Regulation applies.

November 16 through 30

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Bland, Lee, Page, Rockbridge, Russell, and Tazewell.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days

  • November 23, November 29 and 30: In all areas unless otherwise noted below.
    • November 23 and November 30: On National Forest lands in Bland County.
    • November 30: On National Forest and Department owned lands in Rockbridge County and on National Forest lands in Page County.
    • Antlered deer only-no either-sex deer hunting days: On National Forest lands in Lee and Tazewell counties and on Clinch Mountain WMA, Channels State Forest, and Hidden Valley WMA. Special Youth Antlerless Deer Regulation applies.

November 16 through January 4

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Albemarle, Arlington*, Charles City, Clarke*, Culpeper (see season exception for C. F. Phelps WMA below), Fairfax*, Fauquier (see season exception for C. F. Phelps WMA below), Frederick* (see season exception for National Forest lands below), Greene, Greensville, Halifax, Hanover, Henrico, Isle of Wight, James City, Lancaster, Loudoun*, Madison, New Kent, Northumberland, Orange, Prince George, Prince William*, Rappahannock, Richmond, Southampton, Stafford, Suffolk (west of the Dismal Swamp line), Surry, Sussex, Westmoreland, and York. (*denotes EAB county)

  • In Arlington County*, City of Hampton, and City of Richmond (in the City of Richmond: archery only, no special permit is required for archery deer hunting). Note: Local Ordinances prohibit the discharge of firearms in these areas (see Local Firearms Ordinances). (*denotes EAB county)
  • In the City of Lynchburg (on private lands for which a special permit has been issued by the Chief of Police).
  • In the City of Newport News: archery only, no special permit is required for archery deer hunting.
  • In Fairfax County* a special landowner permit is required to firearms deer hunt on private lands. Contact the Div. of Animal Control, 4500 West Ox Road, Fairfax, VA 22030 for details. No special police permit is required for archery deer hunting. (*denotes EAB county)

Season Exception

  • November 16 through 30: On C.F. Phelps WMA and National Forest lands in Frederick County.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days

  • November 16 through January 4 (full season): In all areas unless otherwise noted below.
    • November 23, November 30, and December 7 through January 4: On Rapidan WMA.
    • November 23 and January 4: On G.R. Thompson WMA.
    • November 30: On National Forest lands in Frederick County.
    • November 23 and November 30: On C.F. Phelps WMA.
    • December 7: On Chickahominy WMA.
    • Antlered deer only-no either-sex deer hunting days: On the Carlisle Tract of the Hog Island WMA, and Ragged Island WMA. Special Youth Antlerless Deer Regulation applies.

Early and Late Anterless only Firearms Deer Seasons

During these seasons only antlerless deer may be taken.

Early: September 7 through October 4

Late: January 6, 2014 through March 29, 2014:

In the counties of Arlington*, Fairfax*, Loudoun*, and Prince William* (including the cities and towns within). Local firearm ordinances prohibit the discharge of firearms in Arlington County. To firearms deer hunt on private lands in Fairfax County a special landowner permit is required (see above). (*denotes EAB county)

All legal deer hunting weapons including bows, crossbows, muzzleloaders, pistols, shotguns, and rifles are legal. Local firearms ordinances still apply.

All other "normal" deer regulations apply (e.g., daily and season bag limits, tagging and checking, DCAP, DMAP, EAB, etc.).

November 16 through January 4

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Amelia, Appomattox, Brunswick, Buckingham, Charlotte, Chesterfield, Cumberland, Dinwiddie, Fluvanna, Lunenburg, Mecklenburg, Nottoway, Powhatan, and Prince Edward.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days:

  • November 23, November 30, and December 23 through January 4: In all areas unless otherwise noted below.
    • November 23 and November 30: On Appomattox-Buckingham, Cumberland, and Prince Edward State Forests.
    • November 23, November 30, and December 30 through January 4: On Amelia, Briery Creek, Dick Cross, Horsepen Lake, and Powhatan WMAs.
    • November 23, November 30, and December 7 through January 4: On Featherfin WMA (by quota hunt only).

November 16 through 30

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Augusta, Rockingham, Scott, Smyth, and Washington.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days:

  • November 23 through November 30: In all areas unless otherwise noted below.
    • November 30: On National Forest and Department owned lands in Augusta County, and on National Forest lands in Rockingham County and on private lands west of Routes 613 and 731 in Rockingham County.
    • Antlered deer only-no either-sex deer hunting days: On National Forest lands in Scott, Smyth, and Washington counties and on Clinch Mountain and Hidden Valley WMAs, Hungry Mother State Park, and Channels State Forest. Special Youth Antlerless Deer Regulation applies.

November 16 through December 14

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Henry and Patrick.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days:

  • November 23 and November 30 through December 14: In all areas unless otherwise noted below.
    • November 23 and December 9 through 14: On Fairystone Farms and Turkeycock Mountain WMAs, designated areas of Fairystone State Park, and Philpott Reservoir.

October 1 through November 30

In the cities of Chesapeake, Suffolk (east of the Dismal Swamp line), and Virginia Beach.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days:

  • October 1 through November 30 (full season): In all areas.

November 16 through 30

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Buchanan, Dickenson, and Wise.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days:

  • Antlered deer only-no either-sex deer hunting days in all areas. Special Youth Antlerless Deer Regulation does not apply.

November 16 through December 14

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Floyd and Franklin.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days:

  • November 16 through December 14 (full season): In all areas unless otherwise noted below.
    • November 23 and December 9 through 14: On Philpott Reservoir and Turkeycock Mountain WMA.

November 16 through January 4

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Accomack, Amherst (east of Rt. 29), Campbell, Caroline, Essex, Gloucester, Goochland, King and Queen, King George, King William, Louisa, Mathews, Middlesex, Nelson (east of Rt. 151), Northampton, Pittsylvania and Spotsylvania. Note: Dogs may not be used for deer hunting in Campbell County (west of Norfolk Southern Railroad) and in Pittsylvania County (west of Norfolk Southern Railroad).

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days:

  • November 23, November 30, and December 7 through January 4: In all areas unless otherwise noted below.
    • November 23, November 30, and December 30 through January 4: On Mattaponi WMA.
    • November 23 and December 30 through January 4: On James River WMA.
    • November 23 and January 4: On White Oak Mountain WMA.

November 16 through 30

In the counties (including the cities and towns within) of Alleghany, Bath, and Highland.

Either-sex Deer Hunting Days:

  • November 23 and November 30: In all areas unless otherwise noted below.
    • November 30: On National Forest lands in Alleghany County and on National Forest and Department-owned lands in Bath and Highland counties.

Firearms Either-Sex Deer Hunting For Incorporated Cities and Towns

Deer of either sex may be taken full season in the incorporated limits of any city or town in Virginia that allows deer hunting but only with the specific weapons authorized by each individual city or town.

Legal Methods and Restrictions During Firearms Deer Seasons:

Special restrictions apply to specific firearms use during this season. See Legal Use of Firearms and Local Firearms Ordinances for details.

  • Modern firearms.
  • Hunters are allowed to use archery tackle or muzzleloading firearms to deer hunt during the firearms deer season with the following conditions:
    • all hunters are required to comply with the either-sex deer hunting days for the firearms deer season.
    • use of muzzleloading firearms is allowed only if not otherwise restricted.
    • muzzleloader deer hunters must wear blaze orange during the firearms deer season.
    • archery deer hunters must wear blaze orange during the firearms deer season except when hunting in areas where the discharge of firearms is prohibited.

Dogs May Be Used For Deer Hunting Except:

  • West of the Blue Ridge.
  • East of the Blue Ridge in Bedford, Fairfax, Franklin, Henry, Loudoun, Northampton, and Patrick counties, and Amherst (west of Rt. 29), Campbell (west of Norfolk Southern Railroad), Nelson (west of Rt. 151), Pittsylvania (west of Norfolk Southern Railroad), and the City of Lynchburg.
  • When hunting during archery and muzzleloading seasons and on the Youth and Apprentice Deer Hunting Day.
  • On many military areas. Check individual Post regulations.
  • On Amelia, Cavalier, Doe Creek, Featherfin, Mattaponi, Merrimac Farm, Pettigrew, Chester F. Phelps, and G. Richard Thompson Wildlife Management Areas.
  • During the first 12 hunting days of the firearms deer season in Madison and Greene counties.

Tracking Dogs:

  • Tracking dogs maintained and controlled on a lead may be used to find a wounded or dead bear or deer statewide during any archery, muzzleloader, or firearm bear or deer hunting season, or within 24 hours of the end of such season, provided that those who are involved in the retrieval effort have permission to hunt on or to access the land being searched and do not have any weapons in their possession.