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Maryland Hunting Guide

Although Maryland does not offer the game diversity that some other states do, it does provide significant hunting opportunities for a few species. Maryland’s varied northeastern landscape provides strong population densities for the available species.

What to Hunt


The species diversity in Maryland can be limited, but those game animals that can be found in the state are notably abundant.

Quail

Deer

Maryland is home to a strong population of over 200,000 whitetails. Hunters may take two antlered deer total for all seasons combined, and no more than one deer per weapon season. Region-specific bag limits for antlerless deer range from two to unlimited. Maryland’s deer seasons run from September through January, plus primitive deer hunt days. On these days, hunters may only use long bows, recurve bows, or flintlock and sidelock percussion muzzleloaders. A third antlerless deer may be taken during these days.

Quail

Waterfowl

Maryland supports a wide range of waterfowl subspecies. Hunters can enjoy Canada geese, wood ducks, and mallards, as well as long-tailed ducks, scaup, ringnecks, buffleheads and goldeneyes. Waterfowl seasons run from September through January, depending on the species. The daily bag limit for ducks is 6, though there are more restrictions on specific types of ducks.

Quail

Turkey

The strongest areas for turkey hunting in Maryland are in the far east and far west. Maryland’s spring turkey season generally occurs in April, with a bag limit of one bearded turkey per day and two per season. The fall turkey season generally occurs in October and November, with a bag limit of one turkey of either sex. Maryland also offers a brief winter turkey hunting season in January, though there is a bag limit of one turkey between fall and winter seasons combined.

Other Maryland game species include: Canada Goose, Brant, Teal, Ducks, Mourning Dove, Rails, Woodcock, Common Snipe, Black Bear, Squirrel, Rabbit, Quail, Pheasant, Ruffed Grouse, Crow, Coyote, Fisher, Fox, Muskrat and Mink, Nutria and Groundhog, Raccoon, Opossum, Skunk, etc. found in the "Hunting Seasons" section at bottom of the page.

Where to Hunt


Maryland has comparatively little public hunting land, but it is well distributed across the state. Private private hunting opportunities are readily available.

Wildlife Management Areas

Maryland’s Wildlife & Heritage Service maintains 64 Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) across the state. These areas total just under 128,000 acres. WMAs can be found in 19 of Maryland’s 23 counties. Hunting is permitted on WMAs.

State Parks

Hunting is permitted in many of Maryland’s state parks. These areas total about 4,000 acres of huntable land. Each state park is subject to restrictions and regulations based on the game, season, and method of take.

Licensing Fees


All hunters in Maryland must obtain hunting licenses. Additional stamps, permits, and fees May apply for certain species of game.

License Fee
​Resident Apprentice Hunting License ​$10.00
Resident Regular Hunting License ​$24.50
​Resident Junior Hunting License (Under 16) ​$10.50
​Resident Senior Hunting License (Over 65) ​$5.00
​​Nonresident Hunting License ​$130.00
​Nonresident Junior Hunting License ​$32.50
​Nonresident Senior Hunting License ​$65.00

Hunter Education


All first-time hunters in Maryland must pass a hunter education course. Limited exceptions exist for law enforcement and military personnel.

Youth Hunting


Maryland offers junior hunt days for waterfowl, turkey, and deer throughout the year. Junior hunters must have a license or a license exemption to participate. These hunts are available to hunters ages 16 and younger.

Trapping


The following mammals are considered furbearers in Maryland: beaver, bobcat, coyote, fisher, gray fox, long-tailed weasel, mink, muskrat, nutria, opossum, raccoon, red fox, river otter, and skunk. Bobcats may not be hunted or trapped. The following species may only be taken by means of trap: beaver, long-tailed weasel, mink, muskrat, and river otter. A furbearer permit is required to trap any fur bearing mammal.

Hunting Seasons

Game Season Begins Season Ends
White-tailed Deer* Sep 9 2022 Jan 31 2023
Sika Deer* Sep 9 2022 Jan 31 2023
Wild Turkey Oct 29 2022 Nov 6 2022
Jan 19 2023 Jan 21 2023
Feb 1 2023 Feb 3 2023
Canada Goose* Sep 1 2022 Mar 7 2023
Light Geese Oct 1 2022 Apr 15 2023
Brant Nov 16 2022 Jan 31 2023
Teal, September Season Sep 16 2022 Sep 30 2022
Ducks Oct 1 2022 Jan 31 2023
Mourning Dove Sep 1 2022 Jan 7 2023
Rails Sep 1 2022 Nov 21 2022
Woodcock Oct 19 2022 Jan 21 2023
Common Snipe Sep 29 2022 Jan 31 2023
Black Bear Oct 24 2022 Oct 29 2022
Squirrel Sep 3 2022 Feb 28 2023
Rabbit Nov 5 2022 Feb 28 2023
Quail* Nov 5 2022 Jan 15 2023
Pheasant Nov 5 2022 Feb 28 2023
Ruffed Grouse Oct 1 2022 Jan 31 2023
Crow* Aug 15 2022 Mar 15 2023
Coyote no closed season no closed season
Fisher Nov 1 2022 Feb 1 2023
Fox* Nov 15 2022 Feb 15 2023
Muskrat and Mink* Nov 15 2022 Mar 15 2023
Nutria and Groundhog no closed season no closed season
Raccoon, Skunk, Opossum* Oct 15 2022 Mar 15 2023

*Hunting dates for this species may vary by zone, method of take, or subspecies of animal. Visit the state’s website here to find out more.

Disclaimer: The information provided here is not to be construed as legal advice or acted upon as if it is legal advice: it is provided for informational purposes only. While we strive to provide accurate, up-to-date content, we cannot guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or currency of the information.