From Staff Reports
SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. — With the Sept. 28 opening of the bow hunting season for deer, the annual West Virginia Big Buck Contest has begun. Antlered deer taken between through Dec. 31 are eligible to be scored and entered.
“Any hunter who bags a deer in West Virginia with antlers having eight or more points, a 26-inch beam length and points that are more than eight inches long may have a winning buck,” said Division of Natural Resources Wildlife Biologist Gene Thorn.
“Antlers will be measured according to the official scoring system for North American big game animals established by the Boone and Crockett Club.”
Plaques will be awarded to eight first-place winners for typical and non-typical bucks in gun, bow, muzzleloader and crossbow (physically challenged) categories at the 2014 National Hunting and Fishing Day Celebration.
Gun and muzzleloader hunters whose bucks score more than 140 points typical or 165 non-typical will receive certificates.
Bowhunters or physically challenged crossbow hunters whose bucks score more than 125 points typical or 155 non-typical will also receive certificates.
There were 189 new entries into the West Virginia Big Buck Records last year that were taken during the 2012 season. The season total showed 22 bucks taken by gun, one by muzzleloader, 65 by bow and none by crossbows (physically challenged) that qualified. Bucks taken in previous years may still be scored for a certificate if they meet the minimum score.
The DNR, Izaak Walton League of West Virginia, West Virginia Bowhunters Association, West Virginia Muzzle Loaders Association, West Virginia Physically Challenged Advisory Board and Toyota sponsor the contest.
A list of official measurers is available on the DNR’s website: www.wvdnr.gov/hunting/BigBuckContest.shtm, or successful hunters can contact any DNR district office to make an appointment for scoring.