Deer firearm season down slightly over last year

Sunday Hunting Contributed to Total

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources reported that more than 4,000 deer were taken on the two Sundays during the season, more than 10 percent of the total take during the two week season.Maryland hunters reported taking 34,412 deer during the state’s most popular hunt, the two-week firearm season. The total was similar to last year’s official harvest of 35,002.

 

“Deer hunters enjoyed good weather for most of the two weeks and produced a very respectable firearm harvest,” Wildlife and Heritage Service Director Paul Peditto said. “We are pleased to see hunters use the opportunity to hunt on Sunday in those select counties where the option is available.”

Hunters reported taking 21,661 antlerless deer during the season, down 3 percent from last year’s official total of 22,381. The antlered harvest increased slightly from 12,621 last year to 12,751 this year. Sika deer represented 423 of the total antlered harvest and 478 of the total antlerless harvest.

In western Maryland (Region A), hunters reported taking 4,478 white-tailed deer, an 11 percent increase from last year’s harvest of 4,018. The region’s harvest was comprised of 2,962 antlered and 1,516 antlerless deer. In the remainder of the state (Region B), the white-tailed deer harvest decreased 3 percent year-over-year from 30,984 to 29,934 this year. The region’s total included 9,789 antlered and 20,145 antlerless deer.

Maryland Reported Antlered and Antlerless Deer Harvest
2016-2017 and 2017-2018 Two Week Firearm Season
Antlered Antlerless Total
County 2016-17 2017-18 % Change 2016-17 2017-18 % Change 2016-17 2017-18 % Change
Allegany 863 1,053 22 561 528 -5.9 1,424 1,581 11
Anne Arundel 239 246 2.9 471 472 0.2 710 718 1.1
Baltimore 440 490 11.4 969 1,003 3.5 1,409 1,493 6
Calvert 184 185 0.5 403 370 -8.2 587 555 -5.5
Caroline
whitetail 447 385 -13.9 1,050 946 -9.9 1,497 1,331 -11.1
sika 0 0 * 1 0 * 1 0 *
Carroll 936 927 -1 1,571 1,692 7.7 2,507 2,619 4.5
Cecil 428 516 20.6 903 982 8.7 1,331 1,498 12.5
Charles 389 387 -0.5 780 814 4.4 1,169 1,201 2.7
Dorchester
whitetail 447 307 -31.3 1,041 758 -27.2 1,488 1,065 -28.4
sika 415 384 -7.5 486 445 -8.4 901 829 -8
Frederick 1,299 1,246 -4.1 2,136 2,245 5.1 3,435 3,491 1.6
Garrett 1,186 1,503 26.7 804 786 -2.2 1,990 2,289 15
Harford 328 380 15.9 768 714 -7 1,096 1,094 -0.2
Howard 182 181 -0.5 396 339 -14.4 578 520 -10
Kent 521 468 -10.2 1,052 988 -6.1 1,573 1,456 -7.4
Montgomery 435 415 -4.6 779 797 2.3 1,214 1,212 -0.2
Prince George’s 269 239 -11.2 505 432 -14.5 774 671 -13.3
Queen Anne’s 452 485 7.3 1,184 1,235 4.3 1,636 1,720 5.1
Saint Mary’s 288 249 -13.5 649 600 -7.6 937 849 -9.4
Somerset
whitetail 381 317 -16.8 936 858 -8.3 1,317 1,175 -10.8
sika 2 0 * 2 0 * 4 0 *
Talbot 381 280 -26.5 1,075 936 -12.9 1,456 1,216 -16.5
Washington 1,014 1,038 2.4 1,097 1,089 -0.7 2,111 2,127 0.8
Wicomico
whitetail 504 462 -8.3 1,187 1,194 0.6 1,691 1,656 -2.1
sika 26 36 * 28 28 * 54 64 *
Worcester
whitetail 565 569 0.7 1,545 1,405 -9.1 2,110 1,974 -6.4
sika 0 3 * 2 5 * 2 8 *
Total 12,621 12,751 1 22,381 21,661 -3.2 35,002 34,412 -1.7
*Small sample size

The harvest fell sharply in portions of several counties on the Eastern Shore, including Caroline, Dorchester and Talbot, perhaps due to an outbreak of Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease, a naturally-occurring disease among white-tailed deer. The virus is carried by biting midges and can spread quickly through localized deer populations. The deer population is expected to rebound quickly in this areas.

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