Administrative Code

Virginia Administrative Code
Title 4. Conservation and Natural Resources
Agency 15. Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
1/19/2020

Chapter 260. Game: Waterfowl and Waterfowl Blinds

4VAC15-260-10. "Floating blind" and "stationary blind" defined.

"Floating blind" means a floating device, whether in motion or anchored, that can be occupied by and conceal one or more hunters, uses a means of concealment other than the device's paint or coloration, and is used in the public waters for the purpose of hunting and shooting waterfowl.

"Stationary blind" means a structure erected at a fixed location either on the shores of the public waters or in the public waters for the purpose of hunting and shooting waterfowl. A stationary blind shall be (i) of such size and strength that it can be occupied by and conceal one or more hunters or (ii) large enough to accommodate and conceal a boat or skiff from which one or more hunters intend to hunt or shoot waterfowl.

All such devices and structures shall come within the provisions of the laws for hunting waterfowl, which require that blinds be licensed.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501 and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 1; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994; Volume 20, Issue 25, eff. July 28, 2004.

4VAC15-260-20. Determining depth of water for purpose of licensing blinds to persons other than riparian owners.

In determining whether or not stationary blinds shall be licensed to persons other than riparian owners pursuant to § 29.1-345 of the Code of Virginia, the department shall presume that the correct depth of water at mean high tide at a given location as required by said statute is that obtained by using the most recent "Tide Tables" and adjustments thereto published by the National Ocean Survey, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the United States Department of Commerce. Any person requesting the department to use an alternative method of calculating such depth, at a given location, shall bear the burden and expense of establishing to the satisfaction of the department, that such depth is in fact other than that obtained as described therein.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-501, and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 2, eff. July 1, 1982; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994.

4VAC15-260-30. Violation of federal law or regulation pertaining to migratory game birds.

A violation of federal statute or a regulation based thereunder as relates to the taking, capturing, killing or attempting to take, capture or kill any migratory game bird shall constitute a violation of this section.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501 and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 3, eff. July 1, 1991; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994.

4VAC15-260-35. Distance from a licensed stationary blind and off-shore blind stake.

No person shall hunt migratory waterfowl in the public waters of this Commonwealth within 500 yards of any legally licensed erected stationary blind or legally licensed offshore blind stake site of another without possessing the written consent of the licensee that is immediately available upon request by any law-enforcement officer, except when in active pursuit of a visible crippled waterfowl that was legally shot by the person.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-351, and 29.1-501 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 33, Issue 23, eff. August 1, 2017.

4VAC15-260-40. (Repealed.)

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 4; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994; repealed, Virginia Register Volume 33, Issue 23, eff. August 1, 2017.

4VAC15-260-50. Blinds in the City of Virginia Beach.

In the City of Virginia Beach, except for blinds and floating blind sites which may be erected by the department, no new blinds shall be erected and no licenses shall be issued for the erection of new shore or stationary water blinds upon the shores or in the public waters, nor may floating or mat blinds anchor within 500 yards of the shores of lands or blinds owned or controlled by the department except floating blinds may be stationed at sites designated by the department. Blinds and floating blind sites erected by the department shall not be licensed, but there shall be a metal plate affixed to such blinds for identification purposes.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501 and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 5, eff. July 1, 1971; amended, Virginia Register Volume 8, Issue 26, eff. October 21, 1992; Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994.

4VAC15-260-60. Blinds adjacent to Chickahominy Wildlife Management Area.

No license shall be issued for stationary waterfowl blinds on Morris Creek and the Chickahominy River in Charles City County adjacent to the Chickahominy Wildlife Management Area.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-501, and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 6, eff. July 1, 1977; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994.

4VAC15-260-70. Blinds on Game Farm Marsh Wildlife Management Area.

No stationary waterfowl blinds shall be licensed, and no stationary or floating blind license shall be required for hunting waterfowl on the Game Farm Marsh Wildlife Management Area, or in, or on, the public waters of the Chickahominy River, north of the New Kent-Charles City County line adjacent thereto; provided, however, that this section shall not abridge the privileges prescribed for landowners, and their lessees and permittees, in §§ 29.1-344 and 29.1-347 of the Code of Virginia.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-501, and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 7, eff. July 1, 1978; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994.

4VAC15-260-75. Blinds adjacent to the Ware Creek Wildlife Management Area.

Except for blinds built or maintained by the department, no stationary waterfowl blinds shall be licensed on the public waters of Philbates and Ware Creeks, or on the York River within 1000 yards of the Ware Creek Wildlife Management Area. Waterfowl hunting within 500 yards of the wildlife management area property will be permitted only at locations and during times designated by the department. However, this section shall not abridge the privileges prescribed for landowners and their lessees and permittees in §§ 29.1-344 and 29.1-347 of the Code of Virginia.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-501, and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 33, Issue 2, eff. August 31, 2016.

4VAC15-260-80. Blinds adjacent to Ragged Island Wildlife Management Area.

No license shall be issued for stationary waterfowl blinds in the adjacent waters to mid-channel of Kings Creek and Ragged Island Creek or in the adjacent waters of the James River and Batten Bay within 1000 yards of the Ragged Island Wildlife Management Area in Isle of Wight County.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501 and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 8, eff. July 1, 1985; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994.

4VAC15-260-90. Blinds and hunting prohibited in sections of Accomack County.

A. The waters adjacent to the Free School and Michael marshes in the vicinity of the Town of Saxis in Accomack County shall be closed to stationary blinds as defined by 4VAC15-260-10, starting from a stake on the north shore of Back Creek S 230° 37' E for a distance of 7560' more or less to a point 1500' more or less west of South Point, then S 58° 00° E for a distance of 9380' more or less to the center of the mouth of Cattail Creek. The waters of Messongo Creek shall be closed to stationary blinds from the above-described line to Mill Creek. The waters of Cattail Creek shall be closed to stationary blinds from its mouth following the center of the creek to the southeast corner stake of Michael Marsh.

B. In the section known as Michael Marsh, waterfowl hunting is prohibited in all marsh above mean high tide and in the creeks running into the marsh.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-501, and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 9; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994; Volume 27, Issue 23, eff. July 1, 2011.

4VAC15-260-100. Disturbing waterfowl on New River within boundaries of Radford Army Ammunition Plant.

It shall be unlawful to take, attempt to take or pursue waterfowl on that portion of the New River that lies entirely within the boundaries of Radford Army Ammunition Plant located in the counties of Montgomery and Pulaski.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-501, and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 10, eff. July 1, 1975; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994.

4VAC15-260-110. Disturbing, taking, etc., waterfowl within Mason Neck State Park.

It shall be unlawful to take, attempt to take, pursue or disturb waterfowl on those waters within the boundaries of Mason Neck State Park located in Fairfax County, known as Kane Creek Water Fowl Refuge.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501 and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 11, eff. July 1, 1985; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994.

4VAC15-260-115. Disturbing waterfowl on Kittewan Creek refuge in Charles City County.

It shall be unlawful to hunt on Kittewan Creek Refuge in Charles City County west (upstream) of the posted refuge boundary markers (latitude-longitude coordinates 37.29831 - 77.05134) located approximately one mile upstream from the James River. In addition, camping and other recreational activities that are not consistent with the property's function as a refuge for waterfowl are not permitted.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-351, and 29.1-501 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 33, Issue 23, eff. August 1, 2017.

4VAC15-260-116. Blinds adjacent to Werowocomoco National Park and York River State Park.

No licenses shall be issued for stationary waterfowl blinds in front of Werowocomoco National Park in Purtan Bay and on the York River between Purtan Island and Barren Point in Gloucester County, and in front of York River State Park between Taskinas Creek and the eastern boundary of York River State Park in James City County. These prohibitions shall not alter the privileges prescribed in §§ 29.1-344 and 29.1-347 of the Code of Virginia for riparian owners and their lessees and permittees.

Statutory Authaority

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

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 34, Issue 2, eff. February 1, 2018.

4VAC15-260-120. Special sea duck season area.

Whenever federal migratory waterfowl regulations permit a special season for taking scoter, eider and long-tailed (formerly old-squaw) ducks within an area designated as a special sea duck hunting area under regulations adopted by the board, such special sea duck hunting area shall be designated and delineated as follows:

Those waters at a distance greater than 800 yards from any shore, island or emergent vegetation in the following area: The ocean waters of Virginia, the tidal waters of Northampton and Accomack counties, and the Chesapeake Bay and each of its tributaries up to the first highway bridge. Back Bay and its tributaries are not included in the special sea duck hunting area.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501 and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 14, eff. July 1, 1973; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994; Volume 19, Issue 19, eff. July 1, 2003.

4VAC15-260-130. Bonus scaup area.

Whenever federal migratory waterfowl regulations permit a special season for taking scaup ducks outside the regular duck hunting season, or permit an extra bag limit on scaup ducks during the regular duck hunting season, within an area designated under regulations adopted by the board, the area to which such special season or extra bag limit shall apply shall be designated and delineated as follows:

The tidal waters of Accomack and Northampton counties; the waters of Virginia Beach seaward of, but not including, Back Bay and all of its tributaries, and seaward of Route 60; Virginia waters bordering on and tributary to the Potomac River below the mouth of Chopawamsic Creek at Quantico Marine Reservation, but in no case above any highway bridge across such tributaries; and the waters of Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries upstream to Routes 644 and 200 in Northumberland County, Route 360 on the Rappahannock River, Route 3 on the Piankatank River, Route 33 of the York River, a line between Jamestown ferry dock and Scotland ferry dock on the James River, Route 17 on Chuckatuck Creek and the Nansemond River, Routes 17 and 58 on the Elizabeth River, and Route 337 on the Lafayette River.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-501, and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 15, eff. July 1, 1973; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994.

4VAC15-260-140. Nontoxic shot requirement for hunting of certain migratory game birds.

It shall be unlawful to take or attempt to take ducks, geese, brant, swans, coots, mergansers, rails, snipe, gallinules or moorhens while possessing shotshells loaded with shot other than steel, bismuth-tin, tungsten-iron or other nontoxic shot approved for such use by the director of the department, if such shot is permissible under federal migratory waterfowl regulations.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501 and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 18, Virginia Register, Volume 3, Issue 12, eff. July 1, 1991; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994; Volume 14, Issue 5, eff. October 24, 1997; Volume 14, Issue 24, eff. September 1, 1998; Volume 24, Issue 24, eff. July 8, 2008.

4VAC15-260-150. Great Hunting Creek and Dyke Marsh; no hunting area established.

The waters of the Great Hunting Creek embayment within the City of Alexandria, and the waters of the Potomac River in Fairfax County north of Dyke Marsh and south of the City of Alexandria and between the shore and a line 1,000 feet from the Maryland state line, are declared a no hunting area. It shall be unlawful to hunt migratory waterfowl within this no-hunting area (although waterfowl that have been wounded elsewhere may be pursued into this area), and no stationary or floating blind shall be located within this no-hunting area.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501 and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 19, eff. October 15, 1990; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994.

4VAC15-260-160. Great Hunting Creek and Dyke Marsh; floating blind area.

No license shall be issued for stationary waterfowl blinds on the Potomac River in Fairfax County adjacent to National Park Service lands in the Great Hunting Creek and Dyke Marsh areas. Waterfowl hunting in Commonwealth waters adjacent to the above mentioned lands shall be by licensed floating blind only. Such floating blinds (i) must be attached securely to a post or buoy affixed to the river bottom by the department or anchored at global positioning system (GPS) locations designated by the department and (ii) are limited to one floating blind per post at any time. Hunters in licensed floating blinds may hunt from designated locations during legal shooting hours on Thanksgiving Day and on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays during the open seasons for hunting waterfowl in Virginia. Blind sites shall be occupied on a daily first-come basis, such sites to be occupied no earlier than 4 a.m. or later than one-half hour after sunset. All such blinds shall be removed each day.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-351, and 29.1-501 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-02-24 § 20, eff. October 15, 1990; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 4, eff. December 14, 1994; Volume 33, Issue 23, eff. August 1, 2017.

4VAC15-260-170. Waterfowl hunting on Dutch Gap Conservation Area in Chesterfield and Henrico counties.

A. As used in this section, "affected area" means all of that portion of the James River known as the Dutch Gap Cutoff and waters adjacent to and within the Dutch Gap Conservation Area and Henricus Park, from the Dutch Gap Boat Landing downstream to the northeast tip of Farrar's Island in Henricus Park, including the old channel of the James River adjoining the Dutch Gap Conservation Area on Farrar's Island.

B. The hunting of waterfowl in the affected area is prohibited except as authorized by, and subject to the terms and conditions specified in, a department-issued permit.

C. No stationary waterfowl blinds shall be licensed in the affected area.

D. The prohibitions in subsections B and C of this section shall not apply to, and shall not alter in any respect, the privileges prescribed in §§ 29.1-344 and 29.1-347 of the Code of Virginia for riparian owners, their lessees, and permittees.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501 and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 24, eff. September 16, 1998.

4VAC15-260-180. Tundra Swan hunting permit.

Only persons with a valid Tundra Swan hunting permit will be allowed to take Tundra Swans during the prescribed season in Virginia. Tundra Swan hunting permits are nontransferable and are valid for use only by the person to whom issued. Permits must be in the immediate possession of the permit holder while swan hunting. Immediately at the time and place of kill, successful permittees must permanently record the month and day of kill on their permit and attach the permit to the swan as instructed.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-103, 29.1-501, and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 27, Issue 23, eff. July 1, 2011.



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