Vol. 39 Iss. 9 - December 19, 2022

Chapter 20

REGISTRAR'S NOTICE: The Board of Wildlife Resources is claiming an exemption from the Administrative Process Act pursuant to § 2.2-4002 A 3 of the Code of Virginia when promulgating regulations regarding the management of wildlife.

Title of Regulation: 4VAC15-20. Definitions and Miscellaneous: In General (amending 4VAC15-20-50, 4VAC15-20-200).

Statutory Authority: §§ 29.1-103, 29.1-501, and 29.1-502 of the Code of Virginia.

Effective Date: January 1, 2023.

Agency Contact: Jeff Trollinger, Natural Resource Manager II, Department of Wildlife Resources, 7870 Villa Park Drive, #400, Henrico, VA 23228, telephone (804) 367-1134, or email


The amendments (i) update the department's "List of Native and Naturalized Fauna of Virginia" incorporated by reference; (ii) remove fees for use of boat ramps; and (iii) set late fees for exhibitor and rehabilitator permits issued by the department.

4VAC15-20-50. Definitions; "wild animal," "native animal," "naturalized animal," "nonnative (exotic) animal," and "domestic animal".

A. In accordance with § 29.1-100 of the Code of Virginia, the following terms shall have the meanings ascribed to them by this section when used in regulations of the board:

"Native animal" means those species and subspecies of animals naturally occurring in Virginia, as included in the department's 2020 2022 "List of Native and Naturalized Fauna of Virginia," with copies available in the headquarters and regional offices of the department.

"Naturalized animal" means those species and subspecies of animals not originally native to Virginia that have established wild, self-sustaining populations, as included in the department's 2020 2022 "List of Native and Naturalized Fauna of Virginia," with copies available in the headquarters and regional offices of the department.

"Nonnative (exotic) animal" means those species and subspecies of animals not naturally occurring in Virginia, excluding domestic and naturalized species.

The following animals are defined as domestic animals:

Domestic dog (Canis familiaris), including wolf hybrids.

Domestic cat (Felis catus), including hybrids with wild felines.

Domestic horse (Equus caballus), including hybrids with Equus asinus.

Domestic ass, burro, and donkey (Equus asinus).

Domestic cattle (Bos taurus and Bos indicus).

Domestic sheep (Ovis aries) including hybrids with wild sheep.

Domestic goat (Capra hircus).

Domestic swine (Sus scrofa), including pot-bellied pig and excluding any swine that are wild or for which no claim of ownership can be made.

Llama (Lama glama).

Alpaca (Lama pacos).

Camels (Camelus bactrianus and Camelus dromedarius).

Domesticated races of hamsters (Mesocricetus spp.).

Domesticated races of mink (Mustela vison) where adults are heavier than 1.15 kilograms or their coat color can be distinguished from wild mink.

Domesticated races of guinea pigs (Cavia porcellus).

Domesticated races of gerbils (Meriones unguiculatus).

Domesticated races of chinchillas (Chinchilla laniger).

Domesticated races of rats (Rattus norvegicus and Rattus rattus).

Domesticated races of mice (Mus musculus).

Domesticated breeds of European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) recognized by the American Rabbit Breeders Association, Inc. and any lineage resulting from crossbreeding recognized breeds. A list of recognized rabbit breeds is available on the department's website.

Domesticated races of chickens (Gallus).

Domesticated races of turkeys (Meleagris gallopavo).

Domesticated races of ducks and geese distinguishable morphologically from wild birds.

Feral pigeons (Columba domestica and Columba livia) and domesticated races of pigeons.

Domesticated races of guinea fowl (Numida meleagris).

Domesticated races of peafowl (Pavo cristatus).

"Wild animal" means any member of the animal kingdom, except domestic animals, including without limitation any native, naturalized, or nonnative (exotic) mammal, fish, bird, amphibian, reptile, mollusk, crustacean, arthropod, or other invertebrate, and includes any hybrid of them, except as otherwise specified in regulations of the board, or part, product, egg, or offspring of them, or the dead body or parts of them.

B. Exception for red foxes and European rabbits. Domesticated red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) having coat colors distinguishable from wild red foxes and wild European rabbits possessed in captivity on July 1, 2017, may be maintained in captivity until the animal dies, but the animal may not be bred or sold without a permit from the department. Persons possessing domesticated red foxes or European rabbits without a permit from the department must declare such possession in writing to the department by January 1, 2018. This written declaration must include the number of individual animals in possession and date acquired, sex, estimated age, coloration, and a photograph of each fox or European rabbit. This written declaration shall (i) serve as a permit for possession only, (ii) is not transferable, and (iii) must be renewed every five years.

4VAC15-20-200. Fees for miscellaneous permits.

A. Pursuant to §§ 29.1-417, 29.1-418, 29.1-422, and other applicable provisions of the Code of Virginia, except as provided by this chapter the following annual fees shall be paid by applicants for the specified permits before any such permit may be issued.

Permit Type


Late Fee

Boat Ramp Special Use

Nonprofit Public Use


Private/Commercial Use


Collect and Sell


Commercial Nuisance Animals



Commercial Use



Educational/Scientific Use



Exotic Importation and Holding


Field Trial


Foxhound Training Preserves


Hold for Commercial Use







Scientific Collection


Special Hunting Permit


Striped Bass Tournament


Threatened & Endangered Species


Trout Catch-Out Pond


B. Veterinarians shall not be required to pay a permit fee or to obtain a permit to hold wildlife temporarily for medical treatment.


List of Native and Naturalized Fauna of Virginia, January 2021, Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources

List of Native and Naturalized Fauna of Virginia, April 2022, Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources

Federal Endangered and Threatened Animal Species as of May 7, 2019

VA.R. Doc. No. R22-7235; Filed November 30, 2022