Md. waterfowl hunt dates expected to win approval

September 04, 1994|By Peter Baker | Peter Baker,Sun Staff Writer

After three public meetings and consultation with its Wildlife Advisory Commission, the Department of Natural Resources has submitted its 1994-95 waterfowl hunting season and bag limit selections for federal approval.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is expected to approve Maryland's proposals, which include expanded hunting dates for most species of ducks and Canada geese.

"These seasons and bag limits are designed to maximize hunting opportunity while continuing to allow populations to increase," DNR Secretary Torrey C. Brown said Friday, when the selections were announced.

As a result of public comment at a series of meetings late last month, the Canada goose season was changed from earlier proposals and will include 20 days at one bird and 15 days at two birds. The change allows five extra two-bird days.

Hunters also expressed a preference for more hunting days for ducks rather than an additional duck per day.

The duck season will be 40 days at three ducks per day. The November split has been expanded by one day and the December-January split will run from Dec. 13 through Jan. 14.

Black ducks remain closed during the October season and canvasbacks will be open only from Jan. 7 to Jan. 14.

Sea trout proposals

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission has recommended that Maryland adapt its recreational size and creel limits for sea trout and spotted sea trout to help achieve a 25-percent reduction in catch.

Maryland's present limits are 12 inches minimum and 10 per day.

The ASMFC has recommended the following options: an increase in minimum size to 14 inches at 10 per day: two per day with no minimum; three per day at 10 or 11 inches; four at 12 inches or six at 13 inches.

Virginia has adopted the 14-inch minimum and 10-fish creel limit; the Potomac River Fisheries Commission has a 12-inch minimum with a four-fish creel limit.

Maryland's commercial fishery also will reduce its take by 25 percent through a 44-day season in October and November, with trawl net and gill net mesh restrictions and a 12-inch minimum size.

Changes at Wye Island

The managed hunting program at the Wye Island Natural Resource Management Area will continue this year with a few changes.

Bow hunting for deer will be allowed under a permit system Oct. 24-29 and Nov. 14-25, with permit applications due at the facility office by Sept. 16.

A muzzleloader hunt has been added this year for Dec. 5-10. Permit applications for this hunt are due by Oct. 14.

Waterfowl hunting by permit will be allowed only on Tuesdays, Thursday and Saturdays during the state seasons. Applications are due by Oct. 14.

Applications are available from DNR regional offices in Centreville and Salisbury or by writing DNR State Forest and Park Service, Tawes State Office Building E-3, Annapolis, Md. 21401. (Include a self-addressed, stamped envelope.)

Applications must be accompanied by a nonrefundable $5 application fee and a copy of your current hunting license.

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