Collection of Wildlife for Scientific and/or Educational Purposes

Virginia Scientific Collection, Research, Survey Permit/Salvage Permit/Threatened & Endangered Species Permit Applications and Permit(s) Report Form and Instructions

A permit is required for any activities involving the capture of nongame species.

“Collection” includes all sampling activities that remove, even temporarily, any individuals from the natural environment. “Collection” also includes habitat disturbance such as turning over rocks/logs, putting down cover boards etc. as well as the capture and handling of species. “Salvage” includes all taking of species found dead. A permit is required for Scientific Collection and/or Salvage activities ANYWHERE in the Commonwealth of Virginia including federal lands.

Persons applying for a State Scientific Collection, Threatened & Endangered Species, or Salvage permits, MUST be affiliated with one of the following types of organizations:  K-12 school, College or University, Museum, Private Consulting Firm, State/Local/Federal Government, etc.  These permits are not issued to individuals without one of these affiliations.  If you are not sure, please contact the DGIF Permit Section at (804) 367-6913.

The following items are REQUIRED to receive a Threatened & Endangered Species, Scientific Collection, or Bird Banding Permit:

  • Fully completed permit application, including specific species and location information and you MUST have a specific project that the permit is addressing; blanket permits will not be issued. Applications must be submitted at least 30 days prior to the start of the project.
  • The formal Project Proposal/Study Plan/Field Plan, must include specific information regarding the scientific affiliation or purpose of the project and include; collection methods to be used, data to be collected, specific species to be collected, the proposed and justified quantity to be collected/vouchered, and disposition methods. (Scientific Collection Permit Application Proposal Requirements (PDF))
  • A resume/CV, or other documentation, providing project and species or taxon specific experience and qualifications for each person listed on the application. Students without experience should list appropriate course and must be accompanied by the Principal Permittee. (this applies only to the Collection and Threatened & Endangered Species applications)
  • Copy of Federal Banding Permit (bird banding permit ONLY).
  • No hand written applications will be accepted.
  • All applications and other documentation must be provided electronically to

The following items are REQUIRED to receive a Salvage Permit:

  • Fully completed permit application.
  • Formal Proposal (Who/What/When/Where/(Why, Course curriculum will suffice))
  • No hand written applications will be accepted.
  • All applications and other documentation must be provided electronically to

Changes to Your Existing Permit(s)

If you need to make changes to your existing permit(s), you must submit a Supplemental Amendment Form. Amendment requests must also be submitted at least 30 days prior to the start of the requested activity. Amendments need to be submitted for any change to the existing permit. Examples: addition of species; changes in quantity to be collected; changes to the subpermittee list; new locations; new methods etc.

Justification must be provided for any addition of species and/or numbers and for new locations and methods. A resume/CV, or other documentation, must be provided for any new subpermittees. Resumes/CVs are only required for the addition of subpermittees to a collection or threatened & endangered species permit.

New Projects

Any new project(s), not previously attached to your existing permit, must be submitted as a new application(s) with all required documents.

Standard Conditions to Remember

  • Permittees must notify VDGIF of any incidental take of threatened or endangered species within 24 hours of the incident.
  • Permittees must notify VDGIF of any incidental observation or collection (and release) of threatened or endangered species within 5 days if they do not hold a Threatened & Endangered Species Permit.
  • Permittees must notify VDGIF a minimum of 7 days prior to each sampling event and include where and when the sampling will take place.
  • All species will be released as quickly as possible, collected using methods described in your project description and on your permit, and all mortalities documented.
  • ALL notifications MUST be made to:

Permit Documents for Download

You must have a recent version of Adobe Reader. If you do not, you may obtain it for free from Adobe’s website.

These forms are NOT Apple/Mac compatible.

Payment Options

Payment and submission of required documentation DOES NOT guarantee issuance of any permit.

Check, made payable to “Treasurer of Virginia” and mailed, along with a copy of the first page of the application form, to:

Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
Attn: Shirl Dressler
P.O. Box 3337
Henrico, VA 23228



Report forms with all collection data for the year are due January 31.

NOTE: THE OLD EXCEL REPORTING APPLICATION/FORM IS NO LONGER VALID. PLEASE USE THE LINK BELOW FOR YOUR SCIENTIFIC COLLECTION AND THREATENED & ENDANGERED SPECIES REPORTS. Salvage reports can still be submitted using either a Word Document or a simple Excel Spreadsheet. The new report form will be submitted directly to DGIF when you hit the submit button, no download or email attachment is necessary.

DGIF Permit Holders,

Thank you to those of you who have already submitted permit reports and provided feedback concerning our new online reporting system. We have made note of your application suggestions and will continue to work on improving the system.

If you are concerned about any issues you are experiencing, please take a screen-cap (if possible) and send it to and we will investigate and correct the problem.

Thank you.

If there was no activity conducted under your permit(s), please submit an email to containing the following statement: “No activity under Permit # (insert your permit number[s]) during (insert the appropriate year, i.e., 2008).”

For more information about Threatened and Endangered Species, Scientific Collection, Salvage Permit Applications or for any questions regarding the new Permit Report Form, please contact:

Shirl Dressler
Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries
P.O. Box 90778 Henrico, VA 23228-0778
Phone: 804-367-6913

Exhibitor’s Permit Application

  • Exhibitor’s Permit: for the exhibit of live animals for educational purposes. One-year permit. Fee: $20.00 for state agencies, educational institutions, towns, etc. $50.00 for private businesses.

For information about exhibiting wildlife and exhibitor permit applications and reporting, please contact:

Dianne Waller
Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries
P.O. Box 90778 Henrico, VA 23228-0778
Phone: 804-367-9588