Big Woods

The Big Woods WMA is a 2,208 acre wildlife management area located in Sussex County near the communities of Waverly and Wakefield. It is located adjacent to the Big Woods State Forest and the two parcels together are managed as one unit. The area is predominantly pine forests that are managed to promote quail and other grassland wildlife species.

Big Woods WMA is in the coastal plain and offers various aged pine forests with some hardwood bottom lands. Future management will focus on thinning pine stands and conducting prescribed fires in the understory. The area provides habitat for a wide range of species including white-tailed deer, eastern wild turkeys, and bobwhite quail. Due to potential wildlife management concerns, horseback riding is not permitted on this WMA.

Visitors to the Big Woods Wildlife Management Area are advised that a timber harvest is underway. Loggers may be working in any of the areas shown on the map (see map). Please use caution in these areas and do not block roads and or logging vehicles.


Big Woods WMA is open to hunting. Hunting regulations are generally the same as those for Sussex County, except for Rules for Wildlife Management Areas. Hunting seasons are also similar to those for Sussex County. Exceptions can be found in the Hunting and Trapping Summary. Either-sex deer hunting is allowed on dates specified in the current Hunting & Trapping Digest. Hound hunting for deer is permitted. Please familiarize yourself with the property boundaries and gates prior to visiting the area. Direct any questions regarding this WMA to (804) 829-6580. Hunters must park in designated parking areas.


Take Route 460 to Wakefield. Turn south on route 628 (Courtland Road) and travel for approximately 1 mile. Turn west on route 628 (Brittles Mill Road). Big Woods WMA has road frontage near the intersection of Brittles Mill Road and cedar Sign Post Road (route 622).

Images by: Meghan Marchetti - DGIF