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Natural Resources News

Black Bears Emerging from Winter Dens

Marylanders Urged to Keep Bears Wild

Photo of black bear

Black bear at Savage River Reservoir, Garrett County. Photo by Stephen Badger/Maryland DNR

Maryland’s black bears are leaving their winter dens. As they emerge, they are hungry and searching for food. Natural food sources for bears — such as acorns, plants, berries, and insects — are in short supply until later in the spring, so the bears are attracted to anything that smells like food.

Homeowners who leave human-generated food sources out in the open may unintentionally draw bears to residential areas. Residents of Maryland’s bear country are urged to be proactive and exercise good judgment to avoid creating man-made attractions for bears.  Read more…

Maryland Climate Leadership Academy Offers Day and Evening Courses

Registration for Spring and Early Summer Cohorts Now Open

Photo of lecture on shoreline protectionThe Maryland Department of Natural Resources announces open enrollment for two upcoming cohorts of the Maryland Climate Leadership Academy, free courses offered virtually over the course of eight weeks. This series is designed to prepare anyone interested in seeking Certified Climate Change Professional credentials or increasing competencies in climate change related topic areas.

The daytime cohort runs from April 26 – June 23. The evening cohort runs May 18 – July 13. Registration is open until April 23 for the daytime cohort and May 14 for the evening cohort.  Read more…

‘Welcome to Boating’ Clinics to be Held in May

Reservations Available for Free Basic Instruction

Photo of people on a boatThe Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Marine Trades Association of Maryland (MTAM), Annapolis School of Seamanship, and the Boat U.S. Foundation for Safety and Clean Water are sponsoring free “Welcome to Boating” clinics at Sandy Point State Park. The clinics — held from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on May 4, May 5, and May 6 — will provide instruction for new and experienced boaters on how to properly launch, load, retrieve, and dock a trailerable boat. Read more…

Statewide Spring Turkey Season Set to Open

Junior Hunt Precedes Full Season in April and May

Photo of wild turkey in a field during sprintime

Photo by Doug Wolfe

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources announced that the statewide spring turkey season will kick off April 17 with Junior Turkey Hunt Day. All hunters can try to bag a bird during the regular statewide spring turkey season, April 19-May 24. Read more…

Secretary’s Message – April 2021

Celebrating Our Earth this Spring

Photo of red and yellow tulips in bloom

Photo: “Full Bloom” by Jennifer Fry, submitted to the 2019 Maryland Natural Resources Photo Contest

As we continue to recover from the pandemic, I am more enthused than ever to welcome back spring and get outside. April in particular is a month full of events and opportunities to highlight our state’s amazing natural resources. In fact, it is becoming known as “Earth Month” for its many commemorative days including Maryland Arbor Day on April 7, Earth Day on April 22, and National Arbor Day on April 30. Read more…

Maryland Fishing Report – April 7

Angler Kate Morrison holds an invasive blue catfish she caught on the Nanticoke River -- and destined for the dinner table. Photo by Sean Morrison

Angler Kate Morrison holds an invasive blue catfish she caught on the Nanticoke River — and destined for the dinner table. Photo by Sean Morrison

April offers many fishing opportunities to anglers, ranging from trout to invasive species such as northern snakeheads and blue catfish.

A reminder to anglers that all fishing for striped bass, including catch-and-release, is prohibited in the Chesapeake Bay or any of its tidal rivers — except the main stem of the Potomac River — for the month of April. The main stem of the bay will open to striped bass fishing on May 1 south of the Brewerton Channel.

Read more…

Maryland Names First Group of ‘Outdoor Recreation Ambassadors’

Public, Private Sector Partners will Promote State’s Status as Recreation Destination

Photo of man on a paddleboard with two dogs

Photo by Norma Broadwater, submitted for 2018 Maryland Natural Resources Photo Contest.

The Maryland Department of Commerce and Maryland Department of Natural Resources have announced that 18 Marylanders from the public and private sectors have been named as the state’s first Outdoor Recreation Ambassadors. As part of their responsibilities, the ambassadors will work to enhance the state’s status as a leading destination for outdoor recreation.

The ambassadors all served as members of the Maryland Outdoor Recreation Economic (MORE) Commission, which was established by Governor Larry Hogan in 2017 to develop strategies and make recommendations to strengthen the state’s outdoor recreation industry and help ensure increased investment in our state’s outdoor recreation resources.  Read more…

Eyes on the Bay: Looking Back at Winter (February) 2021

Eyes on the Bay Resumes for 2021

Oscar the Osprey Lands a Perfect Splashy 10 by J. Sal Icaza

Oscar the Osprey by J. Sal Icaza (2020 Natural Resource Photo Contest entry)

Whether you like to boat, fish, swim or just enjoy Maryland’s amazing seafood, we know there are many folks out there who have bay waters running through their veins and like to keep their finger on the pulse of bay conditions. Read more…

Maryland’s Recreational Crabbing Season Now Open

Photo of reflection of four young crabbers with a dip net

Photo by by Christine Edwards, First Place winner in the Summer category, 2018 Maryland Natural Resources Photo Contest.

The recreational crabbing season in Maryland officially opens April 1 for the Chesapeake Bay and tidal tributaries as well as in the Atlantic Ocean, coastal bays and their tributaries. Read more…

Maryland Fishing Report – March 31

Photo of woman holding a rainbow trout

Gracie Ray is all smiles as she holds up one of the larger rainbow trout that are stocked. Photo courtesy of Gracie Ray

Put-and-take trout anglers had a wonderful opening day, the weather cooperated, and there was plenty of room for anglers to spread out and enjoy a day of fishing with family and friends.

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources has issued the 2021 regulations for recreational striped bass fishing in the Chesapeake Bay, available on the DNR website. Striped bass regulation maps — showing the bay’s regions and their open and close dates — can also be found on the department website.

Read more…

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