Administrative Code

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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 4. Conservation And Natural Resources
Agency 15. Department of Wildlife Resources
Chapter 40. Game: In General
5/20/2024

4VAC15-40-290. Validating tags and reporting bear, deer, elk, turkey, and bobcat.

A. If a hunter holds a license or permit to kill a bear, deer, elk, or turkey, the following apply:

1. The hunter killing a bear, deer, elk, or turkey shall, before removing the carcass from the place of kill, validate an appropriate tag on the hunter's special license for hunting bear, special license for hunting deer and turkey, special elk hunting license, bonus deer permit, or special permit by completely removing the designated notch area from the paper tag or by electronically notching a tag and reporting the bear, deer, elk, or turkey using the department's mobile harvest reporting application. Place of kill shall be defined as the location where the animal or bird is first reduced to possession. It shall be unlawful for any person to validate (i.e., notch) a paper tag prior to the killing of a bear, deer, elk, or turkey. A paper tag that is mistakenly validated (i.e., notched) prior to the killing of a bear, deer, elk, or turkey must be immediately voided by the licensee or permittee by writing in ink the word "VOID" on the line provided on the license or special permit tag. All electronically notched tags are permanent and cannot be voided.

2. Upon killing a bear, deer, elk, or turkey and validating (i.e., notching) a paper license tag, bonus deer permit, or special permit, as provided in subsection A of this section, the hunter shall, upon vehicle transport of the carcass or at the conclusion of legal hunting hours, whichever occurs first, and without unnecessary delay, report the kill through the department's electronic harvest reporting system. At such time, the person making the report will be given a confirmation number. The successful hunter shall then immediately record the confirmation number in ink on the line provided on the paper tag that has been validated (i.e., notched) in the field.

3. After the harvest of a bear, deer, elk, or turkey is reported, no written documentation is required as long as the hunter who killed the animal or bird is in possession of the carcass. If the reported carcass is left unattended or transferred to the possession of another individual, written documentation that includes the successful hunter's full name, the date the animal or bird was killed, and the confirmation number must be created and kept in possession with the carcass until the carcass is processed. If the carcass is left unattended, this written documentation must be securely attached to the carcass.

B. If a hunter is exempt from license requirements or holds a license authorization number as prescribed by § 29.1-301, 29.1-327, or 29.1-339 of the Code of Virginia and has killed a bear, deer, elk, or turkey, the hunter shall upon vehicle transport of the carcass or at the conclusion of legal hunting hours, whichever occurs first, and without unnecessary delay, report the kill through the department's electronic harvest reporting system. At such time, the person making the report will be given a confirmation number. The hunter shall immediately create written documentation, including the hunter's full name, the date the animal or bird was killed, and the confirmation number. This written documentation must be kept in possession with the carcass until the carcass is processed. If the carcass is transferred to the possession of another individual, the written documentation must be transferred with the carcass to the individual and kept in possession with the carcass until the carcass is processed. If the carcass is left unattended, this written documentation must be securely attached to the carcass.

C. Any hunter or trapper who kills a bobcat shall report the kill within 24 hours through the department's electronic harvest reporting system. At such time, the person reporting the kill will be furnished with a confirmation number. The hunter or trapper shall immediately record this confirmation number in a location where it can later be retrieved to prove compliance with the reporting requirements or to request a department seal. Any bobcat received by a taxidermist for mounting or tanning shall have written documentation securely attached to the carcass that includes the full name of the hunter or trapper, date of kill, and the harvest confirmation number.

D. Any hunter or trapper who kills a gray fox shall report the kill within 24 hours through the department's electronic harvest reporting system. At such time, the person reporting the kill will be furnished with a confirmation number. The hunter or trapper shall immediately record this confirmation number in a location where it can later be retrieved to prove compliance with the reporting requirements. Any gray fox received by a taxidermist for mounting or tanning shall have written documentation securely attached to the carcass that includes the full name of the hunter or trapper, date of kill, and the harvest confirmation number.

E. It shall be unlawful for any person to destroy the identity of the sex of any bear, deer, elk, or turkey killed until the harvest is reported as required by this section. Successful hunters may dismember the carcass to pack it out from the place of kill as long as they do not destroy the identity of the sex and all parts of the carcass are present when the animal or bird is reported.

F. Processed carcass parts of a bear, deer, elk, or turkey killed legally in Virginia may be transported. However, upon request of any authorized law-enforcement officer, sufficient verbal or written information necessary to properly establish legal possession must be furnished immediately.

G. Upon killing a bear, deer, elk, or turkey within an area designated by the department for disease management and on days designated by the department, the hunter shall present the carcass at or submit carcass parts or samples as directed by the department to a location designated by the department for the purposes of disease surveillance or biological monitoring.

H. A premolar tooth must be removed by the hunter after reporting the harvest of a bear through the department's electronic harvest reporting system. The premolar shall be placed in an envelope furnished by the department and labeled with the hunter's full name, confirmation number, date of kill, and the sex of the harvested bear. This envelope with the premolar and accompanying information must be mailed or delivered to the department no later than 14 days after the close of the bear harvest season.

I. Any bear, deer, elk, or turkey found in possession of any person that has not been reported as required by this section shall be forfeited to the Commonwealth to be disposed of as provided by law.

J. It shall be unlawful to provide false statements or record false information when tagging or reporting the harvest of any wild animal or bird to the department, any agent of the department, or any taxidermist.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103 and 29.1-501 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 39, Issue 24, eff. July 17, 2023.

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