Despite longer season, fewer wild turkeys killed

Notebook

January 17, 1999|By Peter Baker | Peter Baker,SUN STAFF

The 1998 fall hunting season for wild turkey was longer than in previous years, and a greater area of the state was open to hunters. But the total number of birds killed was 16 percent lower than in 1997, according to statistics from the Department of Natural Resources.

The Wildlife Division count for 1998 was 302, compared with 359 in 1997. An additional Saturday was added in 1998, and all of Washington County was opened to hunters.

"Abundant acorn crops kept turkeys scattered throughout the area, and lower reproduction in 1998 meant fewer birds would be available to hunters," said DNR Secretary John R. Griffin. "Many hunters did report seeing plenty of turkey signs, but they had trouble locating turkeys."

The count by county: Allegany, 153; Garrett, 115; Washington, 34.

Saltwater seminar

Late registration for the Salt Water Sportsman magazine national seminar series, Saturday in College Park, will be held at Stamp Student Union on the University of Maryland campus before sessions begin at 9 a.m.

The six-hour program is designed to cover how, where and why of catching game fish from the offshore canyons to the upper Chesapeake using the latest techniques, tackle and strategies.

For Chesapeake Bay fishing, the seminar has enlisted Maryland charter captains Henry Gootee (middle and lower bay), Ed Darwin (Poplar Island to Patapsco River), Ed O'Brien (middle bay) and Peter T. Dressler (light tackle specialist).

Ocean City experts Robby Paquette and Mark Sampson will teach sessions on billfish, tuna and sharks.

Tickets are $40 and can be purchased by calling 800-448-7360.

No deer extension

DNR will not implement a two-day extension of the firearms hunting season for deer this year.

"In the past, the special extended season has been used as a management tool to decrease the female deer population in areas of the state with high or rapidly growing deer populations," said Griffin. "We will evaluate the impact of this year's expanded bag limits before determining if this will be necessary in the future."

Preliminary results from the firearms season indicate a 10 percent increase in the kill statewide.

Pub Date: 1/17/99

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