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Deer Hunters Enjoy Productive Firearm Season Opener

Western Maryland Harvest Sees Jump; Junior Hunt Weekend Also Successful 

Photo of deer in woods, photographed by Douglas E George

Photo by Douglas E. George

Hunters reported harvesting 13,514 deer on the opening weekend of the 2017 Maryland firearm season, the state’s most popular hunting season. The total includes 6,242 antlered and 7,272 antlerless deer, with sika deer comprising 201 of the antlered and 188 of the antlerless totals.

“Excellent weather conditions and the ability to hunt Sunday in much of the state contributed to the healthy harvest the opening weekend,” Wildlife and Heritage Service Director Paul Peditto said. “Sunday hunting continues to offer more opportunities for family and friends to share time out in the fields and woods. At the same time the additional day of harvest contributes positively to sustainably managing deer for the benefit of all.”

Hunters in Region A – mainly western Maryland – reported harvesting 1,401 deer for the weekend, up significantly from last year’s harvest of 1,111. In Region B, the antlered deer harvest decreased from 5,074 last year to 4,841 this year and the antlerless harvest decreased from 7,386 to 7,272.

Deer hunters harvested 3,389 deer (1,369 antlered, 2,020 antlerless) Sunday. Hunting is permitted on select Sundays in 20 counties and has become increasingly popular with hunters across the state. Frederick County once again led the Sunday harvest with 342 deer taken. The harvest was nearly the same as last year’s official total of 13,571 deer for the same period.

Junior hunters also took advantage of good November hunting weather and reported taking 2,462 deer during the Junior Deer Hunt Days.  The harvest was nearly identical to last year’s official harvest of 2,444. These young hunters registered 1,500 antlered and 962 antlerless deer.

Maryland Unofficial Results of Junior Deer Hunt (Nov. 11-12, 2017) and
Opening Weekend Firearm Deer Season (Nov. 25 – 26, 2017)

County Junior Hunt Opening Weekend Firearm Season
Saturday Sunday Total
Antlered Antlerless Total Antlered Antlerless Total Antlered Antlerless Total
Allegany 112 50 162 395 0 395 97 0 97 492
Anne Arundel 15 10 25 81 124 205 21 42 63 268
Baltimore 26 9 35 189 268 457 * * * 457
Calvert 12 13 25 51 79 130 20 51 71 201
Caroline 40 41 81 126 211 337 58 138 196 533
Carroll 90 46 136 442 511 953 89 148 237 1,190
Cecil 61 41 102 200 233 433 58 105 163 596
Charles 69 42 111 134 193 327 57 107 164 491
Dorchester
whitetail 41 35 76 95 197 292 46 133 179 471
sika 20 8 28 118 103 221 60 73 133 354
Frederick 141 85 226 541 692 1233 135 207 342 1,575
Garrett 255 107 362 506 0 506 180 0 180 686
Harford 21 20 41 145 205 350 41 68 109 459
Howard 12 12 24 84 112 196 * * * 196
Kent 40 39 79 193 287 480 59 98 157 637
Montgomery 57 29 86 173 267 440 32 58 90 530
Prince George’s 13 5 18 89 100 189 * * * 189
Queen Anne’s 62 57 119 193 298 491 62 144 206 697
Somerset 56 42 98 121 181 302 42 120 162 464
St. Mary’s 37 32 69 77 156 233 25 48 73 306
Talbot 27 26 53 84 218 302 53 103 156 458
Washington 123 68 191 472 239 711 84 42 126 837
Wicomico
whitetail 87 71 158 164 257 421 65 150 215 636
sika 1 1 2 8 7 15 9 4 13 28
Worcester
whitetail 82 72 154 186 313 499 76 181 257 756
sika 0 1 1 6 1 7 0 0 0 7
Total 1,500 962 2,462 4,873 5,252 10,125 1,369 2,020 3,389 13,514

The two-week deer firearm season runs through Dec. 9. Hunters who use tree stands are strongly advised to wear a full-body safety harness, which should be secured at all times, including while climbing up or down the stand. Using a sliding knot, commonly known as a prussic knot, attached to a line that is tied above the stand allows hunters to be secure from when they leave the ground to their return. The department has more information on tree-stand safety online.


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