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DNR Reminds Hunters to Use New License and Game Check-in System

The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) reminds hunters to use the new COMPASS system to purchase licenses or stamps and to check-in harvested deer or turkeys. DNR launched COMPASS as a pilot project in March 2012 and has now expanded it to include all hunting licenses, stamps and harvest check-in for deer and turkey. Hunters who take deer under the authority of a Deer Management Permit (crop damage permit) must also register their deer through the COMPASS system.

“Many hunters will find the shift to the COMPASS self service features extremely efficient,” said Len Singel, DNR’s chief information officer.

COMPASS issues all hunters an account with a free DNRid number. Once a hunter obtains their unique number, it can be used to identify that person as a returning customer at DNR Service Centers or Agent locations to speed up service. A hunter can also use his or her email address as a username and login to a personalized COMPASS account. This includes purchasing licenses or stamps and registering deer and turkey.

Hunters who want more information or encounter problems should contact the DNR Licensing and Registration Service at 410-260-3220 during normal business hours or the Call Center at 1-855-855-3906 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week.

Here are some key changes hunters need to keep in mind when making the switch to COMPASS:

• Licenses and stamps may still be purchased at Sport License Agents (such as many sporting goods stores) online and through the Call Center. Hunters will be issued a DNRid number during their initial transaction and should keep this number handy for future interactions with DNR. Persons wanting to obtain just a DNRid number may do so at Sport License Agents or online at

• Game checking may still be done online and by phone 1-888-800-0121. Instead of entering a license number, hunters will be asked to enter their DNRid number. COMPASS will require online users to log into their DNR account with the login name and password they established earlier. Game checking will be quick and easy once a hunter has logged into his or her DNR account.

• Hunters registering a deer or turkey will still be issued a confirmation number. Those who have done this in the past will notice that a two letter county code has been added to the confirmation number.

• A significant change is that hunters exempt from needing a hunting license must still have a DNRid number to register a deer or turkey. They can no longer use the last four digits of their social security number followed by their zip code. Once license exempt hunters obtain a DNRid number they can get a printed copy of their Maryland Big Game Harvest Record.

• Persons shooting deer under the authority of a Deer Management Permit to reduce crop damage will also need to have a DNRid number to register deer taken via the permit. In the past, the permit number and the shooter’s identification number were used to report deer taken.

Complete bag limits, season dates, game registration procedures and hunting regulations are available at The 2012-2013 Maryland Guide to Hunting & Trapping issued with each hunting license also contains detailed information about all of Maryland’s hunting seasons.

  • velma deshong

    I have killed a buck deer on my land unable to check
    the deer in….please tell me what to do ….don’t have a number because I have no license iam a land owner

    • kking

      Hi Velma-

      Your harvest report may be made online through your COMPASS account, or by phone at 1-888-800-0121.

      For Phone Harvest Reports – If you are reporting by telephone you will be asked for your DNRid number instead of your license number, please have your DNRid number readily available in addition to your three digit harvest location code. Answer the requested questions to receive a confirmation number at the conclusion of your report. Record your confirmation number on your Big Game Harvest card and Field/Butcher tags. Your harvest will also appear in your COMPASS account for your convenience.

      For Online Harvest Reports – Login to COMPASS ( with your username (email address) and password to jump to your Home page.

      If you do not have a DNRid number then you will have to get one by ‘Enrolling” in COMPASS. Even as a landowner you will need to enroll in COMPASS to get your DNRid number.

      For further questions or help please call the Wildlife & Heritage Service directly at 410-260-8540.

      Patricia Handy (Allen)
      MD-DNR WHS