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Monday, September 10, 2018

Deer hunting season under way in local parks

A couple of young deer in a park in Mason District.
The Fairfax County archery program for reducing the deer population started Saturday, Sept. 8, and runs through Feb. 23, 2019.

The program allows bow-hunting groups certified by the county to use archery to kill deer in designated parks.
Signs like this one are posted at the entrances to parks in the archery program.
The 2018-19 deer hunting program permits archery in 18 park clusters, including these parks in the Annandale/Mason District area:
  • Accotink stream valley cluster: Accotink Stream Valley Park, Eakin Park (Mantua section), Sally Ormsby Park, Brookfield Park, Carrleigh Parkway, and Hunter Village Park.
  • Holmes Run stream valley cluster: Holmes Run Stream Valley, Lillian Carey Park, Mason District Park, Roundtree Park, and Deerlick Park. (Luria Park is not included.)
  • Lake Accotink cluster: Lake Accotink Park, Wakefield Park, Americana Park, and Long Branch Stream Valley. 
Deer hunting is restricted to Monday through Saturday from 30 minutes before sunrise to 30 minutes after sunrise. The parks remain open during deer-hunting season.

The hunters are required to shoot from elevated tree stands that must not be located closer than 100 feet from property lines or closer than 50 feet from established park trails. Archers are not allowed on private property without permission from the owner or tenant.

The deer management program also includes sharpshooting operations conducted by the Fairfax County Police Department in certain parks, including Annandale Community Park.

Sharpshooting will take place on four to five evenings in each park between November and 2018 and March 2019 after sunset when the parks are closed.

Fairfax County believes it’s necessary to allow deer hunting to minimize safety and health hazards related to an overabundance of deer, such as deer-vehicle collisions, the spread of disease, and environmental damage.

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