Virginia Game and Inland Fisheries responds to coronavirus

The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries has announced the taking of several steps in response to the coronavirus.

In a recent press release, the department announced the closing of all its offices to walk-in traffic until further notice. Closed are offices in Henrico, Charles City, Fredericksburg, Forest, Marion and Verona.

DGIF encourages everyone in the commonwealth to utilize the online option, gooutdoorsvirginia.com for all their licensing and registration needs. Hunters, anglers, boaters and wildlife enthusiasts can do most transactions online.

The next DGIF Board of Directors Committee Meetings and Board Meeting are scheduled for May 27–28.

The department announced the following changes to the 2020 Trout Stocking Program: Heritage Day, scheduled for April 4, has been canceled. The Stockings for Urban Program Waters and the Youth-Only Stocked Trout Program will be rescheduled and will no longer be pre-announced. All waters will still receive their full allotment of trout stockings for the season, but stockings will not be announced ahead of time. Additionally, trout stockings at the department’s three fee fishing areas (Clinch Mountain, Crooked Creek, and Douthat Lake) will not begin in early April as planned. Stockings at the fee areas will resume as soon as possible.

Information on daily trout stockings can be found on the DGIF website

(https://www.dgif.virginia.gov/fishing/trout-stocking-schedule/) or by calling the Trout Line at 434-525-3474.

All DGIF fish hatcheries have been closed to the public until further notice.

The following changes have been made to hunter education classes:

All in-person hunter ed classes have been postponed until after April 14 but are still available online. Kalkomey, the provider of hunter-ed.com, has donated 1000 courses to ensure students have the option for online education while at home. To obtain the complementary hunter education certificate, go to hunter-ed.com/virginia and use the code G1VirginiaHE2020. The deadline for registration for the free course is April 14.

The following event changes have been made:

The Merrimac Farm WMA Bluebell Festival scheduled for April 11 has been canceled. Visitors may still enter the WMA to view the Virginia Bluebells found throughout the Cedar Run floodplain.

To stay up to date with the latest DGIF information as it changes, follow the department on social media (Facebook: facebook.com/VDGIF; Instagram: instagram.com/virginiawildlife) and subscribe to Notes from the Field at dgif.virginia.gov/the-outdoor-report

DGIF will keep working diligently with the Department of Health, the governor’s office and other agencies to make sure we help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

With any questions regarding DGIF services or activities, call (804-367-1000).

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