DNR officials revealed those "proposed adjustments" at the Feb. 24 meeting of the Natural Resources Commission. The changes, if approved, would shake out as follows:
Six counties or parts of counties that were closed to antlerless-deer hunting in 2012 would be open to hunters holding lottery-drawn, county-specific permits: Boone, northern Greenbrier, Mercer, western Pendleton and eastern Raleigh.
Southern Lincoln County, which was closed to antlerless-deer hunting in 2012, would be open under a one-deer bag limit with unlimited numbers of permits available.
Seven counties or parts of counties would go from a one-deer limit to a three-deer limit: Barbour, Cabell, Gilmer, Grant, southern Greenbrier, Monroe and Roane.
Thirteen counties or parts of counties would move into the DNR's most liberal category - with unlimited numbers of permits, a 3-deer bag limit and an "earn-a-second-buck" special regulation.
Hunters in those counties would be required to kill an antlerless deer before they could kill a second buck: Berkeley, Harrison, Jackson, Jefferson, Lewis, Marion, Mason, western Mineral, Morgan, Putnam, Ritchie, Wetzel and Wirt.
In 29 counties or parts of counties, the 2013 antlerless-deer regulations would remain the same as they were in 2012: Braxton, Brooke, Calhoun, northern Clay, Doddridge, eastern Fayette, Hampshire, Hancock, Hardy, northern Kanawha, northern Lincoln, Marshall, eastern Mineral, Monongalia, eastern Nicholas, Ohio, eastern Pendleton, Pleasants, Pocahontas, Preston, Randolph, Summers, Taylor, Tucker, Tyler, Upshur, northern Wayne, Webster and Wood.
Foster said the DNR's guidelines allow for counties' regulations to become more conservative or more liberal. This fall, however, agency biologists don't propose to move any counties into more conservative categories.
Sportsmen will have a chance to comment on the proposed regulations at 12 public meetings to be held March 18 and 19 at locations throughout the state. DNR officials will collect the surveys and will make them available to members of the Natural Resources Commission so they can vote on the proposals at their late-April meeting.
Reach John McCoy at johnmc...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1231.