Maryland's new deer management plan, which divided the state into four hunting regions with independent bag limits for bow, muzzleloader and firearms hunters, is intended to "tailor" the deer kill according to the need for population control.
In most parts of the state, the aim is toward thinning the number of breeders by emphasizing the hunt for antlerless deer. In far Western Maryland, however, the management goal is to maintain the deer population near present levels and antlered/antlerless ratio.
According to state game managers, the ridges and mountains of Garrett and Allegany counties and Zone 2 of Washington County are areas that have a good balance of deer numbers and available habitat.
There is, however, a change in the western counties of Region A this year.
"DNR has regulated the harvest of antlerless deer in Western Maryland for many years through the issuance of antlerless deer permits," said DNR Secretary John R. Griffin. "[But] deer hunters need to be aware that DNR will no longer issue antlerless deer permits and will now regulate the harvest of antlerless deer through the issuance of bonus antlerless deer stamps."
DNR will issue 9,500 bonus antlerless deer stamps this year, allowing those hunters selected by lottery to take an antlerless deer during certain portions of firearms, muzzleloader or bow seasons. The resident fee for the stamp is $5; the non-resident fee has been raised from $10 to $25, and residents who apply will get first crack at stamps.
The bonus antlerless stamps for Region A will be made available as follows: Allegany County, 2,000 each in Zones 1 and 2; Garrett County, 1,300 in Zone 1 and 2,000 in Zone 2; Washington County, 2,200 in Zone 2.
Stamps must be used in the county or zone for which they are designated. The firearms season days are Dec. 11-12. Muzzleloader dates are Dec. 19-Jan. 2, and bow season dates are Dec. 14-18 and Jan. 4-30.
Application forms and information are included in the guide to hunting and trapping in Maryland, which is issued with the purchase of a state hunting license.
Bonus stamp clarification
Bonus deer stamps may be used in any deer season and in all regions within established seasons and bag limits for a particular management region.
The purchase of one $5 resident bonus deer stamp allows a hunter to take one additional deer.
For further information on bonus stamps and bag limits, check the guide to hunting and trapping in Maryland 1998-1999.
Record Spanish mackerel
A Pennsylvania angler has set a state record for Spanish mackerel caught in Maryland waters of the Chesapeake Bay, with 6-pound, 8-ounce catch Sept. 11.
Tom Boyle of Dover, Pa., was trolling for rockfish at Parker's Creek south of Breezy Point when the 30 1/8 -inch fish hit a Mann's Stretch 25. The catch was weighed in at Breezy Point Fishing Center.
The previous mark of 6 pounds, 4 ounces was set in September 1997.
Pub Date: 9/20/98