The application period for Virginia’s first-ever managed elk hunt opens on February 1, 2022. The Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources (DWR) will make five antlered elk tags available and hold an elk lottery. It is open to both in-state and out-of-state residents. The application period closes on March 30, 2022, with winners receiving notification by May 30.
The DWR posted the following statement on its Facebook page:
We are at a point in our elk management program where the population can sustain a conservative bull harvest without having negative population effects. This hunting opportunity falls in line with DWR’s mission to connect people to Virginia’s outdoors through activities, such as hunting. It also aligns with the Virginia Elk Management Plan (2019–2028), which states that recreational hunting is the preferred management approach to managing elk. We view our first managed elk hunt in the Elk Management Zone as a milestone of success for our elk restoration program.
The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation provided funding and manpower support leading to the successful restoration of wild, free-ranging elk to their historic Virginia range in 2011. Since 1993, RMEF and its partners completed 81 conservation and hunting heritage outreach projects in Virginia with a combined value of more than $2 million. These projects enhanced 1,439 acres of habitat.
Go here for additional details.
(Photo credit: Bess Thompson/Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources)