The Virginia Board of Wildlife Resources as proposed amendments to the Commonwealth’s regulations governing hunting, trapping, and terrestrial wildlife specifically as they relate to Coyote and Furbearer Hunting Contests which could impact field trials and similar training events. Online comment submission closes July 30, 2021.
As proposed, a new section to Title 4 of the Virginia Administrative Code – 4VAC15-20-260 – Definitions and Miscellaneous: In General. Coyote and furbearer hunting contests – would prohibit hunting contests for coyotes and furbearer species in which participants are offered cash, prizes or other inducements of monetary value.
The proposed amendment language simply states:
It shall be unlawful to organize, sponsor, promote, conduct, participate, or solicit participation in a contest or organized competition in which participants are offered cash, prizes, or other inducements of monetary value for capturing or killing coyotes or fur-bearing animals defined in § 29.1-100. No part of this regulation shall be construed to restrict coyote bounties authorized in § 15.2-926.1.
As written, the proposed amendment is unclear and could be interpreted to prohibit field trials, training, and canine performance events.
What you can do:
Those who participate in such events are encouraged to submit comments online before or on July 30, 2021 and let them know of your concerns for the potential impact to field trials, training, and canine performance events and ask that the proposal be withdrawn until language clearing exempting such activities is included.
Contact information for individual members of the Board and the Region they represent can be found here.
Comments may also be made during the August Committee and Board meeting on August 19, 2021; via US mail to Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources, Attn: Policy Analyst and Regulatory Coordinator, P.O. Box 90778, Henrico, Virginia 23228; or emailed to RegComments@dwr.virginia.gov. Comments must be in writing and accompanied by the name, address and telephone number of the party offering them. Comments submitted by means other than through this online comment system must be received no later than 5 PM on August 6, 2021.