DNR acquires two new wildlife management areas in Preston County

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DNR acquires two new wildlife management areas in Preston County

            SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Two new wildlife management areas (WMAs), both in Preston County, have been acquired by The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR), according to Curtis I. Taylor, chief of the DNR Wildlife Resources Section.

    “These new public lands will provide outdoor enthusiasts with additional opportunities for hunting, trapping, fishing and other wildlife-related activities,” Taylor said. “In addition, these WMAs contain important habitat types and unique wildlife species which, under the management of the Wildlife Resources Section, can be responsibly conserved into the future.”

Cheat Canyon Wildlife Management Area

    The Cheat Canyon WMA (3,836 acres) was the collaborative effort of several acquisition partners, including federal and state agencies, non-governmental organizations and corporate and private donors. Located in the Cheat River Canyon from approximately Albright, West Virginia, north to the Jenkinsburg Bridge, the WMA is very important for the conservation and management of the federally endangered Indiana bat and the federally threatened flat-spired three-toothed land snail, which is known to only occur in the Cheat Canyon in Monongalia and Preston counties.

    In addition, a section of the Allegheny Trail through the Cheat Canyon previously closed to public use is re-opened on the WMA for hiking and wildlife viewing. The Cheat Canyon WMA is composed of very steep and rocky terrain primarily from rim-to-rim in the Cheat Canyon.

    Access into the WMA from the south is via Beech Run Road (County Route 26/23) and from the north by County Route 14/4 from Mount Nebo or Bull Run. Hunting opportunities exist for deer, black bear, wild turkey, coyote and squirrel. Limited trapping is available with raccoon, coyote, bobcat and fisher being common species available. Smallmouth bass fishing opportunities exist in the Cheat River.

Fairfax Pond - Rehe Wildlife Management Area

    The Fairfax Pond – Rehe WMA (638 acres) is located near Reedsville, West Virginia. It is composed of moderate-to-gently rolling slopes with mixed hardwood forests, open fields and a diverse wetland complex in the valley. Scattered old field habitat is found throughout the area along reclaimed strip mine benches. The wetland complex, a very important and limited habitat type in West Virginia, will be managed for a wide array of wildlife species.

    Access to the Fairfax Pond – Rehe WMA can be gained from State Route 92 on Arthur Road (County Route 92/1) and Dogtown Road (County Route 56/2). Primary species for hunting include deer, wild turkey, waterfowl and grouse. Trapping for beaver, muskrat, raccoon and bobcat is available on the area. Fishing opportunities for largemouth bass, bluegill and other sunfish exist in two impoundments located on the WMA.

    Additional information on both of these WMAs is available by contacting the Farmington District 1 DNR office at 304-825-6787.


West Virginia Division of Natural Resources                    

Earl Ray Tomblin, Governor                              
Frank Jezioro, Director

News Release: Oct. 9, 2014

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Hoy Murphy, Public Information Officer 304-957-9365 hoy.r.murphy@wv.gov  
Contact: Curtis Taylor, Wildlife Resources Section Chief 304-558-2771 DNR.Wildlife@wv.gov