Muzzleloader season gets underway on Thursday
The first segment of Maryland’s muzzleloader deer season opens statewide tomorrow. This is one of many deer hunting and deer management opportunities offered in the state and typically coincides with fine fall weather.
The early muzzleloader season runs from Oct. 19-21 in Deer Management Regions A and B. Region A consists of Garrett, Allegany and western Washington counties and Region B is the rest of us. Hunters in Region B can also use muzzleloaders from Oct. 23-28 for antlerless deer only.
Being afield with a muzzleloader in hand is a great way to enjoy the outdoors either individually or with others and provides much needed deer management since other natural predators have been eradicated from their habitat.
“Regulated deer hunting remains our most effective tool for managing deer in Maryland,” said Wildlife and Heritage Service Director Paul Peditto. “Hunting helps keep deer numbers in check while affording a great opportunity to enjoy the outdoors with family and friends.”
The statewide bag limit for antlered white-tailed deer is one per weapon season — archery, muzzleloader, or firearm. Region B hunters who purchase a Bonus Antlered Deer Stamp can take one additional bonus buck after taking two antlerless deer. Bag limits for antlerless deer differ between the regions.
An antler-point restriction remains in effect for the coming hunting season. Deer hunters may harvest up to two antlered white-tailed deer within the yearly bag limit that do not meet the requirement of having at least three points on one antler. Any additional antlered deer taken within the established bag limit must meet the minimum-point restriction. Licensed junior hunters are exempt from this restriction.
The early muzzleloader season for sika deer of either sex is open statewide Oct. 19-21, and then for antlerless-only sika deer from Oct. 23-28. The sika deer muzzleloader season bag limit is three deer with no more than one being antlered. An antlered sika is defined as a deer with at least one antler visible above the hairline.
New this year, the Apprentice Hunting License Program allows first-time and novice hunters a lower-cost opportunity to explore
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