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WVC 20-2-4

§20-2-4. Possession of wildlife.

(a) Except for wildlife lawfully taken, killed or obtained, no person may have in his or her possession any wildlife, or parts thereof, during closed seasons. It is unlawful to possess any wildlife, or parts thereof, which have been illegally taken, killed or obtained. Any wildlife illegally taken, killed or possessed shall be forfeited to the state and shall be counted toward the daily, seasonal, bag, creel and possession limit of the person in possession of, or responsible for, the illegal taking or killing of any wildlife. It is unlawful to take, obtain, purchase, possess or maintain in captivity any live wildlife, wild animals, wild birds, game or fur-bearing animals except as provided by this chapter or any rule promulgated thereunder.

(b) Wildlife lawfully taken outside of this state is subject to the same laws and rules as wildlife taken within this state.

(c) Migratory wild birds may be possessed only in accordance with the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, 16 U. S. C. §703, et seq., and its regulations.

(d) The restrictions in this section do not apply to the director or duly authorized agents, who may take or maintain in captivity any wildlife for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this chapter.

(e) Wildlife, except protected birds, elk, spotted fawn and bear cubs, killed or mortally wounded as a result of being accidentally or inadvertently struck by a motor vehicle may be lawfully possessed if the possessor of the wildlife provides notice of the claim within twelve hours to a relevant law-enforcement agency and obtains a nonhunting game tag within twenty-four hours of possession. The director shall propose administrative policy which addresses the means, methods and administrative procedures for implementing the provisions of this section.

(f) Persons are required to electronically register deer, bear, turkey, wild boar, bobcat, beaver, otter and fisher in accordance with rules promulgated by the director.  “Electronically register” means submission of all necessary and relevant information to the division, in the manner designated by rule governing the electronic registration of wildlife. The director may promulgate rules, pursuant to article three, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code, governing the electronic registration of wildlife:  Provided, That the rules shall include a procedure for persons who are not required to obtain licenses or permits under section twenty-eight of this article to register wildlife using identification other than a social security number.  The rules may use a system of a combination of the last four digits of the social security number, date of birth and last name of the person.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2016 Regular Session
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