SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. - West Virginia's traditional antlered (buck) gun season begins on Monday, November 19, according to Curtis I. Taylor, Chief of the Wildlife Resources Section of the Division of Natural Resources (DNR). West Virginia's buck gun season provides a wealth of recreational opportunities for resident and nonresident hunters and has a tremendous economic impact on the state's economy.

"Hunters should enjoy a great deer season in 2012," said Taylor. "Because our traditional November firearms deer season opens the Monday before Thanksgiving every year, the season opening can be as early November 19 and as late as November 25. This year is one of the early opening years, which is closer to the peak deer rut. This date gives hunters an advantage because bucks are more vulnerable to being harvested closer to the rut."

"Hunters can harvest an additional buck with the purchase of the appropriate stamp," added Taylor. Resident hunters wanting the extra buck should purchase the Class RG stamp. The RG stamp must be purchased prior to the beginning of the season, and the cost is $21. The RG stamp must be accompanied by a Class A and CS, A-L, AB-L, X, XS, XJ or free license.

Resident landowners have the privilege of harvesting an extra buck without purchasing the RG stamp if they are hunting on their own property. Nonresident hunters wanting an extra buck must purchase a RRG stamp prior to the beginning of the season, and the cost is $43. The RRG stamp must be accompanied by the Class E or XXJ license. Nonresident hunters who own land in West Virginia are not exempt from purchasing a license or the extra buck stamp, even if hunting on their own property.

Hunters are also reminded that there have been 10 counties or portions thereof (see 2012-2013 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Summary) designated this year where buck firearm hunters are required to take an antlerless deer with a firearm prior to harvesting a second antlered deer during the buck firearms season (with Class N permit for residents or Class NN permit for nonresidents).

In addition, as in past deer seasons, many counties are open to concurrent antlerless deer hunting during the traditional buck gun season. Antlerless deer firearm season opens November 19 on private land and selected public lands. Hunters should consult the 2012-2013 Hunting and Trapping Regulations and Summary available at license agents and   www.wvdnr.gov  for specific antlerless deer regulations in each county and wildlife management area.

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