South Branch WMA mourning dove controlled hunt applications available

Annual hunt at South Branch WMA is scheduled for Sept. 1–2

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.VA. — Applications for a controlled mourning dove hunt at the South Branch Wildlife Management Area in Hardy County are now available, the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (WVDNR) announced today.

The annual mourning dove controlled hunt is scheduled for Sept. 1–2. Hunters may register in person at the WVDNR District 2 headquarters in Romney or request an application by calling the Wildlife Resources Section at 304-822-3551. Hunters who wish to participate must submit an application by midnight on July 1.

The South Branch WMA is located at the upper end of what is known as the “trough section” of the South Branch River in Hardy County. Hunting is by permit only on Sept. 1–2, the first two days of the mourning dove season. 

Successful applicants will be notified by mail or email by Aug. 1. Hunters who are successful in the lottery drawing will be assigned a day to hunt and a shooting station free of charge and will be allowed to bring two guests. A map showing the location of shooting stations will be included with notification of successful drawing.

In addition to the permit, all hunters participating in the controlled mourning dove hunt must have a West Virginia hunting license or be exempt from license requirements. No permits will be necessary to hunt doves after Sept. 2, though hunters must still follow licensing requirements.

The 2024-25 West Virginia Migratory Bird Hunting Regulations with season dates and additional information will be available at WVDNR offices by the end of August and will be posted at