Virginia – Excellent Hatch Conditions, Stronghold in Tidewater

Forecast: Virginia quail hunting remains poor in most areas west of Interstate 95, but southeastern Tidewater counties have the best populations for those willing to scout and get to know landowners. Populations are also doing well in the southeast, eastern shore and the northern Tidewater regions, reports Marc Puckett, small game project leader with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

It has taken a couple of years for quail populations to recover from heavy winter snows in 2009. In addition, last year the state experienced moderate to extreme drought. This year, however, hatching conditions over much of the state have been good to excellent. Heavy rains in the Tidewater area from Hurricane Irene and tropical storm Lee may have impacted the late hatch, but Puckett believes overall, Virginia’s avid quail hunters will have a good year.

Check back for the results of Virginia’s Whistle Count Results and Roadside Survey Results.

Season Dates: November 12, 2011 to January 31, 2012
Daily Bag Limit: 6
Possession Limit: 12
Field Notes: Virginia continues to offer high level technical assistance through its Quail Recovery Program and the wildlife BMP program is offered in key target counties. Federal cost-share programs are available statewide and private lands wildlife biologists are experts at helping landowners through the process.

The Big Woods Wildlife Management Area and Big Woods State Forest in Sussex County are cooperatively managed by VDGIF, Virginia’s Department of Forestry and The Nature Conservancy. These two adjacent areas offer 400+ acres of public lands in a part of the state where public lands have been lacking. They have promise for quail, deer, turkey, woodcock and other game species. A Virginia State Forest Use Permit is required to hunt on the state Forest Portion in addition to a state hunting license.

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