Virginia Deer Season 2023-2024: New Rules & Dates

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The Virginia Deer Season 2023-2024 invites many thrilling and exciting hunting chances. From November to March, this Virginia deer hunting season provides exhilarating adventures for hunters of all skill levels. Whether you’re an experienced hunter or a lover of the great outdoors, Virginia Deer Season 2023-2024 provides many opportunities to discover. Prepare to go on fantastic hunting expeditions across Virginia’s many counties and areas.

Virginia Deer Hunting Season
Virginia Deer Hunting Season

Virginia Deer Hunting season 2023-2024

VA Deer SeasonsSeason Dates Archery Season NOVA Late Archery Season1-Apr – 28-Apr Urban Archery Deer2-Sep – 31-Mar Early Archery Season7-Oct- 17-Nov Late Archery Seasons3-Dec – 6-Jan Muzzleloading Season Early Muzzleloader Season4-Nov – 17-Nov Late Muzzleloader Season (East of Blue Ridge)16-Dec – 6-Jan Late Muzzleloader Season (West of Blue Ridge)16-Dec – 6-Jan Firearms Deer Season General Season18-Nov – 6-Jan Early and Late Antlerless Only Firearms Deer Seasons2-Sep – 6-Oct 7-Jan – 31-Mar Early and Late Antlerless Only Firearms Deer Seasons2-Sep – 31-Jan

Virginia Deer Season Details

Virginia Archery Deer Hunting season

VA Archery Deer SeasonsHunt Start DatesHunt End Dates Early Archery Deer7-Oct17-Nov Late Archery Deer3-Dec6-Jan Late Archery Deer1-Dec6-Jan Late Archery Deer17-Dec6-Jan NOVA Late Archery1-Apr28-Apr Urban Archery Deer2-Sep6-Oct Urban Archery Deer7-Jan31-Mar

Virginia Muzzleloader Deer season

VA Muzzleloading Deer SeasonsHunt Start DatesHunt End Dates Early Muzzleloader Deer4-Nov17-Nov Late Muzzleloader Deers (East of the Blue Ridge)16-Dec6-Jan Late Muzzleloader Deers (East of the Blue Ridge)1-Jan6-Jan Late Muzzleloader Deers (West of the Blue Ridge)16-Dec6-Jan

Legal Procedures and Limitations Throughout the muzzleloader deer seasons

During this season, there are specific limitations on the usage of certain firearms. For more information, see Local Firearms Ordinances, Legal Use of Firearms and Archery Tackle, and Legal Use of Firearms & Archery Tackle.

a)

Firearm TypeRestrictions Rifles• Single shot • Muzzleloading • Sabot with projectile of .35 caliber or greater • Fires single or multiple projectiles • Caliber must be 40 or larger Shotguns• Muzzleloading • One or more barrels • Maximum caliber of 10 gauge Firearms• Muzzleloading • One or more barrels • 45 caliber or larger • Fires one projectile or sabot per barrel • Load propellant and projectile from muzzle Revolvers• Muzzleloading • .45 caliber or larger • Fires one projectile or sabot per cylinder • Load propellant and projectile from forward end of cylinder (projectile must be .35 caliber or larger)

b)

Restrictions/PermissionsDetails Ignition TypesElectronic, percussion, or flintlock ignitions work. Possession of FirearmsMuzzleloader hunters may only carry concealed handguns. Smokeless PowderUse smokeless powder only in muzzleloaders built for it. ScopesMuzzleloaders may use scopes. Unloaded TransportationWhen the percussion cap, primer, battery, and flashpan powder are removed, muzzleloading rifles are “unloaded” in a vehicle. Pneumatic Arrow GunsPneumatic arrowguns are allowed. Hunting with DogsDogs can only track wounded or dead deer, not kill them. Overlapping SeasonsArchery gear is permissible during deer muzzleloader seasons.

Firearms Deer Seasons

Pleas refer to the below list to match the above block colors in the Map.

Every day of the season, antlered deer may be taken. Only defined days for either-sex deer hunting are allowed for the harvest of antlerless deer. Applying statewide is the Special Youth and Apprentice Deer Regulation.

* Indicates a county in Earn a Buck (EAB).

From November 18 to December 2

Augusta CountyRoanoke County Botetourt CountyRockingham County Craig CountyShenandoah County Giles CountySmyth County Grayson CountyWarren County Page CountyWythe County

Days for either-sex deer hunting:

DateHunting Location November 18 – December 2 (full season)All areas unless otherwise noted below 25-NovNational Forest and Department-owned lands in: • Craig County • Wythe County • Giles County 1-DecNational Forest and Department-owned lands in: • Craig County • Wythe County • Giles County 2-DecNational Forest and Department-owned lands in: • Craig County • Wythe County • Giles County 2-DecPrivate land west of Rts. 613 and 731 in Rockingham County 2-DecNational Forest and Department-owned lands in: • Augusta County • Botetourt County • Smyth County • Grayson County • Page County • Rockingham County • Shenandoah County • Warren County • Hungry Mother State Park • Portions of Grayson Highlands State Park

From November 18 to December 2

Lee CountyRussell County Rockbridge CountyTazewell County

Days for either-sex deer hunting:

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DateHunting LocationSpecial Regulation 25-NovAll areas unless otherwise noted below- 1-DecAll areas unless otherwise noted below- 2-Dec• Department-owned lands in Russell County • National Forest and Department-owned lands in Rockbridge and Tazewell counties • Channels State Forest- 2-DecNational Forest lands in Lee County• Antlered deer only • Special Youth and Apprentice Antlerless Deer Regulation applies 2-DecRockbridge CountyDepartment-owned areas

From November 18 to January 6

CountyRegulation Accomack County- Albemarle County- Arlington County- Campbell County (west of Norfolk Southern Railroad)- Charles City County- Chesterfield County- Clarke County- Culpeper County (see season exception for C. F. Phelps WMA below)- Fairfax CountyFirearm hunting is restricted by location and parcel size. Contact the Div. of Animal Control, 4500 West Ox Road, Fairfax, VA 22030 for details. Fauquier County (see season exception for C. F. Phelps WMA below)- Frederick County (see season exception for National Forest lands below)- Greene County- Goochland County- Hanover County- Henrico County- Isle of Wight County- James City County- Loudoun County- Madison County- New Kent County- Northampton County- Orange County- Pittsylvania County (west of Norfolk Southern Railroad)- Powhatan County- Prince George County- Prince William County- Rappahannock County- Southampton County- Spotsylvania County- Stafford County- Suffolk (west of the Dismal Swamp line)- Surry County- Sussex County- York County- Arlington CountyLocal firearms laws prohibit the discharge of a firearm. City of HamptonLocal firearms laws prohibit the discharge of a firearm. City of RichmondOnly by archery; no further permits needed for archery deer hunting (Local firearms laws prohibit the discharge of a firearm.) City of LynchburgOn private property where the Chief of Police has granted a special permit City of Newport NewsOnly by archery; no further permits needed for archery deer hunting

Seasonal Restrictions

DateHunting LocationSeason Exception November 18 – December 2C.F. Phelps WMA and National Forest lands in Frederick CountyHunting allowed in these locations November 18 – January 6All areas unless otherwise noted below- 25-NovG.R. Thompson WMA, Oakley Forest WMA, Powhatan WMA, Rapidan WMA- 2-DecG.R. Thompson WMA, Oakley Forest WMA, Powhatan WMA, Rapidan WMA- 25-NovC.F. Phelps WMA- 2-DecNational Forest lands in Frederick County- December 25 – January 6G.R. Thompson WMA, Oakley Forest WMA, Powhatan WMA, Rapidan WMA- All seasonCarlisle and Stewart tracts of the Hog Island WMA, Ragged Island and Chickahominy WMAsOnly antlered deer may be taken All seasonAll areas unless otherwise noted belowSpecial Youth and Apprentice Antlerless Deer Regulation applies

From November 18 to January 6

CountyRegulation Appomattox County- Brunswick County- Buckingham County- Caroline County- Charlotte County- Dinwiddie County- Essex County- Greensville County- Lunenburg County- Mathews County- Mecklenburg County- Middlesex County- Prince Edward County- Appomattox-Buckingham State ForestNovember 25 and December 2 Prince Edward State ForestNovember 25 and December 2 All counties and areas unless otherwise noted belowNovember 25 and December 2, and January 1 through January 6 Featherfin WMANovember 25 and December 2, and December 9 through January 6

From November 18 to January 6

CountyRegulation Amelia County- Cumberland County- Gloucester County- Halifax County- King and Queen County- King William County- Nottoway County- All counties and areas unless otherwise noted belowNovember 25 and December 2, and December 25 through January 6 Amelia WMANovember 25 and December 2, and January 1 through January 6 Cumberland State ForestNovember 25 and December 2

From November 18 to December 2

DateLocation/Regulation November 18 – December 2Scott County and Washington County (including cities and towns within) Days for either-sex deer hunting 25-NovAll areas unless otherwise noted below November 27 – December 2All areas unless otherwise noted below 2-DecNational Forest and Department-owned lands in Washington County and Channels State Forest For Scott County: Scott County (Antlered deer only and Special Youth and Apprentice Antlerless Deer Regulation applies)National Forest lands For Washington County: Washington CountyNational Forest and Department-owned lands and Channels State Forest

From November 18 to December 16

DateLocation/Regulation November 18 – December 16Henry County and Patrick County (including cities and towns within) Days for either-sex deer hunting 25-NovAll areas unless otherwise noted below 2-DecAll areas unless otherwise noted below December 4 – December 16All areas unless otherwise noted below 25-Nov• Fairystone Farms and Turkeycock Mountain WMAs • Designated areas of Fairystone State Park • Philpott Reservoir December 11 – December 16• Fairystone Farms and Turkeycock Mountain WMAs • Designated areas of Fairystone State Park • Philpott Reservoir

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From October 1 to November 30

Cities Chesapeake Suffolk (east of the Dismal Swamp line) Virginia Beach

Days for either-sex deer hunting:

CityHunting LocationSpecial Regulation ChesapeakeAll areasOctober 1 through November 30 (full season) Suffolk (east of the Dismal Swamp line)All areasOctober 1 through November 30 (full season) Virginia BeachAll areasOctober 1 through November 30 (full season)

From November 18 to December 2

Counties Buchanan County Dickenson County Wise County

Days for either-sex deer hunting:

On all deer shooting days, only antlered deer may be taken. There is a special antlerless deer regulation for young people and apprentices.

From November 18 to December 16

DateCounty (including cities and towns within)Location/Regulation November 18 – December 16Amherst CountyAll areas unless otherwise noted below November 18 – December 16Bedford CountyAll areas unless otherwise noted below November 18 – December 16Carroll CountyAll areas except on National Forest and Department-owned lands November 18 – December 16Floyd CountyAll areas unless otherwise noted below November 18 – December 16Franklin CountyAll areas unless otherwise noted below November 18 – December 16Montgomery CountyAll areas except on National Forest lands November 18 – December 16Nelson County (west of Route 151)All areas except on National Forest lands November 18 – December 16Pulaski CountyAll areas except on National Forest lands November 18 – December 16Roanoke CountyAll areas except on National Forest and Department-owned lands Season Restrictions November 18 – December 2Amherst CountyHunting allowed on National Forest lands November 18 – December 2Bedford CountyHunting allowed on National Forest lands November 18 – December 2Montgomery CountyHunting allowed on National Forest lands November 18 – December 2Nelson CountyHunting allowed on National Forest lands November 18 – December 2Pulaski CountyHunting allowed on National Forest lands November 18 – December 2Carroll CountyNational Forest and Department-owned lands November 18 – December 2Roanoke CountyNational Forest and Department-owned lands November 18 – December 16All areas unless otherwise noted belowNovember 18 through December 16 (full season) 2-DecAmherst CountyNational Forest lands 2-DecBedford CountyNational Forest lands 2-DecNelson CountyNational Forest lands 25-NovMontgomery CountyNational Forest lands 25-NovPulaski CountyNational Forest lands 25-NovCarroll CountyNational Forest and Department-owned lands November 25 – December 16Philpott Reservoir and Turkeycock Mountain WMADesignated areas of Philpott Reservoir and Turkeycock Mountain WMA December 11 – December 16Philpott Reservoir and Turkeycock Mountain WMADesignated areas of Philpott Reservoir and Turkeycock Mountain WMA

From November 18 to January 6

CountyLocation/Regulation Amherst CountyEast of Rt. 29 Campbell County (Dogs may not be used for deer hunting)East of Norfolk Southern Railroad Fluvanna County- King George County- Lancaster County- Louisa County- Nelson CountyEast of Rt. 151 Northumberland County- Pittsylvania County (Dogs may not be used for deer hunting)East of Norfolk Southern Railroad Richmond County- Westmoreland County-

Days for either-sex deer hunting:

CountyRegulation/Dates All areas unless otherwise noted belowNovember 25 and December 2, and December 11 through January 6 Hardware River WMANovember 25 and December 2, and December 25 through January 6 James River and Tye River WMAsNovember 25 and January 1 through January 6 White Oak Mountain WMANovember 25, and January 4, 5 and 6

From November 18 to December 2

In the counties of Highland, Alleghany, Bath, and their surrounding cities and towns.

Days for either-sex deer hunting:

DateCounty (including cities and towns within)Hunting LocationSpecial Regulation November 18 – December 2Alleghany CountyOn National Forest landsDecember 2: On National Forest lands November 18 – December 2Bath CountyOn National Forest and Department-owned landsDecember 2: On National Forest and Department-owned lands November 18 – December 2Highland CountyOn all private lands in the county and On Highland WMANovember 25 and December 2: On all private lands and Highland WMA

Antlerless Only Firearms Deer Seasons in the Early and Late.

DateCounty (including cities and towns within) September 2 – October 6Arlington County September 2 – October 6Fairfax County (Firearms hunting restricted by location and parcel size. Contact Div. of Animal Control for details) September 2 – October 6Loudoun County September 2 – October 6Prince William County (Except on Department-owned lands) September 2 – October 6Carroll County (On private lands) September 2 – October 6Culpeper County September 2 – October 6Clarke County September 2 – October 6Fauquier County September 2 – October 6Floyd County September 2 – October 6Frederick County September 2 – October 6Madison County September 2 – October 6Montgomery County September 2 – October 6Orange County September 2 – October 6Page County September 2 – October 6Pulaski County September 2 – October 6Rappahannock County September 2 – October 6Shenandoah County September 2 – October 6Warren County September 2 – October 6York County January 7 – March 31Arlington County January 7 – March 31Fairfax County January 7 – March 31Loudoun County January 7 – March 31 Prince William County (Except on Department-owned lands) January 7 – March 31Carroll County January 7 – March 31Culpeper County January 7 – March 31Clarke County January 7 – March 31Fauquier County January 7 – March 31Floyd County January 7 – March 31Frederick County January 7 – March 31Madison County January 7 – March 31Montgomery County January 7 – March 31Orange County January 7 – March 31Page County January 7 – March 31Pulaski County January 7 – March 31Rappahannock County January 7 – March 31Shenandoah County January 7 – March 31Warren County January 7 – March 31York County January 7 – January 31Bedford County

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Hunting For Incorporated Cities and Towns (Firearms Either-sex Deer)

DateCity/TownSpecial Regulation November 18 – January 6Virginia’s incorporated towns (excluding Chesapeake, Suffolk, and Virginia Beach)Full-season either sex deer hunting is allowed. Hunting using city-approved firearms. Earn a Buck covers all cities and towns except Chesapeake, Suffolk, and Virginia Beach.

VA Deer Bag Limits

RegionDaily Bag LimitSeason Bag LimitAntlered Deer LimitAntlerless Deer Limit East of the Blue Ridge (excluding National Forest lands in Amherst, Bedford, and Nelson counties)Two deer per daySix deer per license yearUp to three antlered deerAt least three antlerless deer West of the Blue Ridge and on National Forest lands in Amherst, Bedford, and Nelson countiesTwo deer per dayFive deer per license yearUp to two antlered deerAt least three antlerless deer

Regulations and Legal Procedures for the Firearms Deer Seasons

Firearms Use during Firearms Deer SeasonRestrictions and Permissions Modern firearmsAllowed for deer hunting Pneumatic arrowgunsPermitted for deer hunting Air riflesMust be .35 caliber or larger for deer hunting Archery tacklePermitted during firearms deer season with either-sex days. Muzzleloading firearmsPermitted, unless otherwise limited during firearms deer season. Muzzleloader deer huntersMust wear blaze orange or blaze pink Archery deer huntersExcept in no-firearm zones, wear blazing color throughout season.

VA Dogs Laws in Deer Hunting

Dogs in Deer HuntingRestrictions and Permissions West of the Blue RidgeDeer hunting is prohibited with dogs. East of the Blue RidgeBedford, Fairfax, Franklin, Henry, Loudoun, Northampton, Patrick, and others prohibit deer hunting with dogs. SundaysSundays are weapon-free deer hunting days for dogs. Archery and Muzzleloading SeasonsArchery and muzzleloading deer hunting seasons prohibit dogs. Youth and Apprentice Deer Hunting WeekendThe Youth and Apprentice Deer Hunting Weekend does not allow dogs. Military AreasDeer hunting with dogs on military bases is regulated by each Post. Specific Wildlife Management AreasAmelia, Cavalier, Doe Creek, Featherfin, and other Wildlife Management Areas prohibit deer shooting with dogs. Madison and Greene counties (November 18 – December 1)Madison and Greene counties prohibit dog deer shooting from November 18 to December 1. Tracking DogsTracking dogs are permitted for deer hunting.

Elk Hunting seasons Virginia.

Virginia’s Elk Management Zone—Buchanan, Dickenson, and Wise counties—has a lottery for elk hunting. The elk hunt lottery costs $15 for Virginia residents and $20 for non-residents. Six fortunate hunters will get to hunt a bull elk in the zone’s second elk hunt from October 14-20, 2023. In January 2024, the fall 2024 elk hunt application will be available, along with hunt results in the fall. Elk may be taken outside the Elk Management Zone during open deer seasons with authorized weapons, excluding sling bows and air rifles. Elk reporting and biological sample collection follow deer hunting rules.

One elk per day is allowed statewide. Elk with antlers above the hairline count toward the either-sex (buck) deer quota, while those without count toward the daily and seasonal antlerless deer limit. Elk hunting using DCAP, DMAP, or DPOP tags is illegal. Elk hunting outside the Elk Management Zone follows deer hunting rules. Elk hunters in Virginia should educate themselves on the laws and reporting procedures to ensure a successful and ethical hunt. Virginia’s elk county awaits!

Frequently Asked Questions

Dates & Regulations Source: dwr.virginia.gov

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Ethan Smith is a seasoned marine veteran, professional blogger, witty and edgy writer, and an avid hunter. He spent a great deal of his childhood years around the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest in Arizona. Watching active hunters practise their craft initiated him into the world of hunting and rubrics of outdoor life. He also honed his writing skills by sharing his outdoor experiences with fellow schoolmates through their high school’s magazine. Further along the way, the US Marine Corps got wind of his excellent combination of skills and sought to put them into good use by employing him as a combat correspondent. He now shares his income from this prestigious job with his wife and one kid. Read more >>