Maryland deer kill falls 2 percent to 91,930

SPORTS DIGEST

March 02, 2007|By CANDUS THOMSON

Maryland deer hunters killed 91,930 deer during the bow, firearms and muzzleloader seasons, down about 2 percent from last season.

The top five counties, combined total, were: Washington (8,815), Frederick (6,884), Baltimore (6,090), Montgomery (5,116) and Carroll (5,022), according to the Department of Natural Resources.

The totals show a marked change from five years ago, when Baltimore and Montgomery were at the bottom of the top 10 and Western Maryland counties were near the top.

Open suburban spaces with their abundant herds have become "the next great places to hunt," said Paul Peditto, head of DNR's Wildlife and Heritage Service. And, he said, the decline in Garrett and Allegany counties was to be expected, given recent adjustments in regulations that shifted the emphasis away from young bucks to taking more antlerless animals.

"Now those numbers are stable and we're likely to see a slight increase in the number of deer taken and the quality," he said. "Hunters aren't going to be seeing 20-30 bucks when they go out, but when they see a buck it will be a quality, mature buck."

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