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Guidelines For Persons Applying For West Virginia Scientific Collecting Permits

  1. The name of the person applying for the permit should be the first name listed on the top of the application form, and the permit holder must be on-site when the surveys are being conducted. Any additional people who may be assisting with the applicant must be listed also. If any subpermittee will be working on his/her own (i.e., the applicant will not be on-site during the surveys), then a separate permit is required.

  2. Clearly describe the purpose for which the specimens are to be collected and attach a project proposal.

  3. Be specific in specifying where work will take place. Do not list counties without also listing the nearest town. Lists of coordinates without county and nearest town do not satisfy the survey site requirement. Providing a general location may prompt the need to ask for additional information to insure that rare, threatened and endangered species will not be inadvertently impacted. This can result in a delay in issuing the permit. Statewide permits can be issued for projects dealing with surveys for endangered species and aquatic surveys; however, these permits will not valid until project-specific information is supplied and permit addenda are issued. Other statewide permits will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

  4. Sign and date the application, and attach any required fees (all fees are per permit application):

    • Consultants: $200.00
      Out-of-state academics/researchers/students: $25.00
      In-state academics/researchers/students: No charge
      Government agencies: No charge
      Non-profit groups: No charge

      Checks are to be made payable to the WV Division of Natural Resources.

  5. A report must be submitted to the Scientific Collecting Permit Office (WVDNR, P.O. Box 67, Elkins, WV 26241) within 45 days of the expiration date of the permit. Reporting forms or databases for some species groups will be supplied by the WVDNR; however, in general, reports shall include the species name, number observed and collected, date, and location (including coordinates). Failure to submit a report will result in denial of future permits. Rare species records will become part of the statewide Natural Heritage Database. All data will help the WVDNR manage the state’s natural resources. Copies of any reports or published papers resulting from your work in West Virginia are appreciated and will placed WVDNR files. For permits requesting to handle federally threatened or endangered species, the West Virginia Scientific Collecting Permit will allow the permittee to handle the specified species under the WVDNR’s federal endangered species permit under Section 6 of the Endangered Species Act. Endangered species projects require written concurrence from the US Fish and Wildlife Service. The scientific collecting permit does not allow the taking (or the holding in captivity) of any federally threatened or endangered species, unless approved by the US Fish and Wildlife Service. All threatened and endangered animals must be released at the site of capture.

  6. Permit applications requesting the handling of migratory birds or raptors must be accompanied by a copy of the applicant’s federal banding permit.

  7. If any federally threatened or endangered species is encountered, it must be reported within 48 hours (unless noted otherwise in permit provisions) to Craig Stihler (craig.w.stihler@wv.gov) or Barbara Sargent (barbara.d.sargent@wv.gov). Specific location data must be included.

  8. Permits will not be issued if the applicant does not show appropriate qualifications to conduct the work stated. This is particularly true for applicants requesting permits to work with federally listed species. The applicant must provide a CV or resume which includes references, a list of publications, and other pertinent information.

  9. Please note that there may be restrictions placed on any scientific collecting permit, so it is important to read all permit provisions each year that a permit is issued. Failure to adhere to these provisions may result in the permit being revoked, denial of future permits, and/or legal action.

  10. The permit must be carried with you while you are in the field; Natural Resources Police Officers may request to see your permit.

  11. Scientific collecting permits do not give permission to access private property. Always contact landowners before entering private lands.

  12. Scientific collecting permits are issued on a calendar year basis. If a project extends beyond December 31, a new permit is required for the new calendar year.

  13. Permit holders may be requested to contact the district biologist and/or local Natural Resources Police Officer before beginning your work. Such requirements will be clearly stated on your permit.

  14. A permit addendum can be issued when changes to the project scope are not covered in the current permit. To request a permit addendum, all new information must be provided to the WVDNR. This new information may include counties (and nearest town), streams (and nearest town), species to be handled/collected, methodologies, expiration date, etc. If changes are related to a specific project, the project information must be provided as well. Lists of coordinates do not qualify as “location”.

To download the Application for West Virginia Scientific Collection Permit, click here. - (PDF format, 5.12KB)

To download a Fillable Application for West Virginia Scientific Collection Permit, click here. - (PDF format)

(You will need Acrobat Reader to view this file)

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