Night-time sharpshooting operations are conducted by the Fairfax County Police Department at select parks in the county when parks are closed to the public. This operation involves systematic culling of deer by trained police officers under a special kill permit authorized by the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources.
Each park that is selected for the operation has a safety evaluation conducted by Police Department personnel. Tactical operations plans are developed for each park. Night-vision equipment, thermal imaging and suppressed firearms are used to expedite field procedures and to ensure discrete operations.
County staff and uniformed public safety officers are present at parking lots and trailheads on nights when sharpshooting is conducted to inform park patrons of the deer management activity and prevent unauthorized access as a safety measure.
Deer harvested during sharpshooting operations are donated to Hunters for the Hungry. This non-profit organization donates venison to local homeless shelters to provide food for the needy. Hunters for the Hungry has processed and distributed over 5.6 million pounds of venison providing a total of 22.2 million servings to those in need since the program began in 1991.
Nov. 2022 - March 2023 Planned Sharpshooting Operations
2022-2023 Sharpshooting Operations Locations:
Bren Mar Park and Turkeycock Run Stream Valley
Franconia Park and Monticello Woods Park
Frying Pan Farm Park
Green Spring Gardens
Huntley Meadows Park/Dogue Creek Stream Valley (late season following archery)
Meadowlark Botanical Gardens (late season)
In order to efficiently reduce the deer herd, nighttime sharpshooting operations will be conducted by the Fairfax County Police Department. Sharpshooting will occur after dusk, when most parks are closed to the public, and in pre-determined locations away from residences and businesses.
Operations will be conducted between November 2022 and March 2023.
Operations will not be conducted on weekends (Fridays, Saturdays, or Sundays) to minimize impacts to park use or events.
Operations will not be conducted over the Thanksgiving holiday from Nov. 23 – 27, 2022 or during the winter holiday season from Dec. 16, 2022 – Jan. 2, 2023.
In the event of inclement weather or park disruptions that result in cancellation of an operation, additional nights will be scheduled.
Deer Management Public Information Meetings
There are no in-person public information meetings currently scheduled for the 2022-2023 Deer Management Program.