Details for VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF WILDLIFE RESOURCES PROPOSED REGULATION AMENDMENTS

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Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources - Proposed Regulation Amendments The Virginia Board of Wildlife Resources, pursuant to §§ 29.1-103, 29.1-501, and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia, has proposed the below amendments to the Commonwealth's regulations. Comments are solicited through July 30 and can be submitted (1) online at https://dwr.virginia.gov/regulations/2021-predator-hunting-contests/, (2) postal-mailed to the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources, Attn: Policy Analyst and Regulatory Coordinator, P.O. Box 90778, Henrico, Virginia 23228-0778, or (3) emailed to regcomments@dwr.virginia.gov. Comments in writing or email must contain name, address, and telephone number of the party offering them. After July 30, comments must be arranged to be made at the August 19, 2021 meeting of the Board, 9:00 AM at 7870 Villa Park Drive, Suite 400, Henrico, Virginia 23228. Details on can be found at https://dwr.virginia.gov/meetings/. After hearing public comment on the proposed amendments at the August 19 meeting, the Board will take final action on the regulation amendments. For complete details, see https://www.dwr.virginia.gov/regulations/. The following is a summary of the Board's proposed regulation amendments: 4VAC15-20-260 (NEW). Definitions and Miscellaneous: In General: Coyote and furbearer hunting contests. The proposal is to prohibit hunting contests for coyotes and furbearer species in which participants are offered cash, prizes or other inducements of monetary value. Competitive hunts that offer prizes for killing coyotes and furbearer species are controversial and have been prohibited or restricted in other states. In recent years, there have been numerous predator hunting competition events hosted in Virginia, including several large regional contests with animals transported into Virginia from other states. Although most hunters support the idea of predator hunting contests, some members of the public oppose competition events, especially when large numbers of predators are killed and harvested animals are perceived as not being utilized appropriately. Due to these beliefs and perceptions, some wildlife professionals have expressed concern that negative attitudes associated with these contests may undermine public support for hunting in general. The Department is also concerned that improper disposal of out-of-state carcasses could facilitate the spread of the parasite Echinococcus multilocularis, a small tapeworm that has potential human health implications and is much more common in foxes and coyotes in some other states.

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