PARKERSBURG - Applications to participate in the city's annual urban deer hunt in September are available now.
This year officials say those who have qualified in the past will not have to go through the qualification process again.
Mayor Bob Newell said this marks the third year of the urban deer hunt which will take place Sept. 7 through Dec. 31 in Johnson T. Janes Park. The hunt will be with bows only and helps curb the city's urban deer population.
"The first year they got about a dozen deer, and last year they got about 22," Newell said.
The city will issue 30 permits on a first-come, first-served basis. Before the city issues a permit, prospective participants must meet criteria and pass a proficiency test.
In addition to possessing a valid West Virginia hunting license, participants must obtain a bow-hunting proficiency permit from the city. The test will consist of shooting five broadhead arrows at a target 20 yards away. Four of the arrows must be in the kill zone of the target.
Proficiency tests will be conducted at the police firing range on Keever Street from 5-7 p.m. Aug. 27 and Aug. 29. An alternate date has been set aside for Aug. 31 from 8-10 a.m. if needed. Tests must be scheduled by telephone no later than 4:30 p.m. Aug. 30.
Those who successfully completed the proficiency test before will not be required to complete the test again.
Newell said safety and safe hunting practices will be top priorities this year. The park will not be closed to the public during the hunt, he said.
"The deer hunters are being told to pay attention to that," he said.
For more information or to schedule the alternate test date should contact Public Works Director Rick Lemley at 304-424-8559.