STATE: Wildlife Commission adopts proposed wildlife management regulations for 2023-24 seasons

Published 2:27 pm Friday, February 24, 2023

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The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission voted at its business meeting to adopt eight proposed rules related to wildlife management for the 2023-24 seasons. The proposed fisheries, game lands regulations for the 2023-24 seasons will be considered at an upcoming Commission meeting.

Highlights of the rules adopted by Commissioners include:

Deer Either-Sex Seasons: Increased either-sex seasons on private lands in the following counties in the Western and Northwestern Zones:

  • Madison County will increase from a 1-day “introductory” to a 6-day “conservative” season (opening day through 1st Saturday).
  • Burke, Yancey, Mitchell, Avery and Caldwell counties will increase from a 6-day “conservative” to a 13-day “moderate” season (opening day through 2nd Saturday).
  • Polk, Rutherford and Cleveland counties will increase from a 2-week “moderate” to a 4-week season (opening day through 4th Saturday).

Wildlife Conservation Areas: Changed the dates and areas of restricted access on portions of Wildlife Conservation Areas that are posted as Waterbird Nesting Areas from April 1 through August 31, to March 1 through Sept. 15 and prohibit open fires.

The proposals adopted were presented at three public hearings held across the state in January along with a fourth virtual hearing. During the public comment period, Dec. 1, 2022 – Jan. 30, 2023, the Wildlife Commission received input from constituents via email, an online comment portal, mail and at the virtual public hearing. Commissioners carefully reviewed each comment, prior to voting.

The rules adopted at the February Commission meeting have an anticipated effective date of June 1. To view the full text of all adopted rules, view the exhibits within the Feb. 23 Commission meeting agenda package.