Department of Game and Inland Fisheries COVID-19 update

dgifThe Department of Game and Inland Fisheries is taking the COVID-19 virus seriously and wants to make sure staff and constituents are taking all necessary precautions.

DGIF encourages everyone in the Commonwealth to utilize the online option, for all of your licensing and registration needs. Hunters, anglers, boaters and wildlife enthusiasts can do most transactions online.


All DGIF offices and fish hatcheries are operational, but closed for walk in traffic until further notice.

As you may have seen circulating around social media, DGIF has not canceled any hunting seasons or fishing opportunities. All access points are open. No license requirements or regulations on fishing or hunting have been lifted. Please follow all rules and regulations.

The upcoming turkey season, including youth and apprentice weekend, are still on schedule.

The following closures to access points have been made:

  • Burke Lake Park: the parking area and boat launch at Burke Lake will be closed until further notice. This coincides with the Fairfax County Park Authority’s decision to close Burke Lake Park in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Goshen Scout Reservation and Lake Merriweather: As of March 30, the Goshen Scout Reservation and Lake Merriweather will be closed until further notice. This coincides with the National Capital Council’s decision to close the property in response to COVID-19.
  • George Washington & Jefferson National Forests: the George Washington & Jefferson National Forests are still currently open for recreational fishing.

Trout stocking will continue. However, the following changes have been made to the 2020 Trout Stocking Program in order to promote social distancing and avoid crowds:

  • Heritage Day, scheduled for April 4 has been canceled.
  • Stockings for Urban Program Waters and the Youth-Only Stocked Trout Program will be rescheduled and will no longer be pre-announced. All waters will still receive their full allotment of trout stockings for the season.
  • Additionally, trout stockings at the Department’s three Fee Fishing Areas (Clinch Mountain, Crooked Creek, and Douthat Lake) will not begin in early April as planned. Stockings at the Fee Areas will resume as soon as advisable.

Information on daily trout stockings can be found on the DGIF website or by calling the Trout Line at 434-525-3474.

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