News from the DNR Office of Communications

Maryland Deer Hunters Repeat A Record Harvest

Annapolis, MD (February 18, 2010) — Maryland deer hunters harvested over 100,000 deer for the second time since modern deer management began in the early 1900s. Surpassing this numerical milestone is consistent with the Department’s goals to reduce or stabilize deer numbers in most of the state. The record 100,663 deer taken during the 2009-2010 deer season barely surpassed the previous record of 100,437 deer set last year.

Hunters reported 33,761 antlered deer (1,115 sika deer) for the 2009-2010 season, a three percent decrease from last year. In contrast, the antlerless harvest increased two percent to 66,902 deer (1,267 sika deer) this year.

“Our survey information confirms that deer hunters have spent more time in the woods over the past two seasons, a trend we attribute in part to the slow economy,” said DNR Deer Project Leader Brian Eyler. “The increased effort has resulted in more healthy and sustainable venison being put in the freezer and is consistent with our efforts to manage the deer population.”

In Deer Management Region A (Garrett and Allegany counties), hunters reported 9,430 deer this year, a five percent decrease from the 2008-2009 total. The antlered harvest decreased eight percent to 4,964 deer this year, while the antlerless harvest of 4,466 deer was down one percent. Region A hunters continue to harvest good numbers of antlerless deer due to the additional day of antlerless firearm hunting on private lands that was added in 2008. The extra day was provided at the request of landowners in the region who wanted more opportunities to effectively manage deer numbers on their land.

The reported deer harvest in the remainder of the state (Region B) was relatively consistent for most counties. Hunters in Region B reported taking 91,233 deer for the year. The antlered harvest of 28,797 deer was two percent lower than last year, while the antlerless harvest increased two percent to 62,436 deer. Washington County once again led the harvest totals with 8,587 deer, followed by Frederick County with 8,447 and Baltimore County with 6,752 deer.

The deer harvest in Maryland’s suburban counties (Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Howard, Montgomery, and Prince George’s counties) continues to be strong. Hunters in these counties reported 21,231 deer for 2009-2010; up one percent over last year. DNR has liberalized antlerless harvest regulations in these counties in an effort to address the impacts that high deer populations have on Maryland’s suburban landscape and residents.

“Controlling the deer population in the suburban areas of the state is a challenging task. Fortunately, Maryland’s hunters have taken advantage of the liberalized antlerless deer hunting opportunities in these areas,” said Wildlife and Heritage Service Director Paul Peditto. “Without their efforts, deer management in the suburban areas would be much more difficult.”

Deer harvest results by county are available in the table below.
 

Maryland Reported Antlered and Antlerless Deer Harvest for the 2008-2009 and 2009-2010 Hunting Seasons
Antlered   Antlerless   Total
County 2008-2009 2009-2010 % Change   2008-2009 2009-2010 % Change   2008-2009 2009-2010 % Change
Allegany 2,582 2,315 -10.3   2,059 2,193 6.5   4,641 4,508 -2.9
Anne Arundel 1,014 944 -6.9   2,091 2,119 1.3   3,105 3,063 -1.4
Baltimore 1,952 1,903 -2.5   5,064 4,849 -4.2   7,016 6,752 -3.8
Calvert 692 732 5.8   1,140 1,524 33.7   1,832 2,256 23.1
Caroline                      
whitetail 799 822 2.9   1,980 1,810 -8.6   2,779 2,632 -5.3
sika 0 1 *   2 1 *   2 2 *
Carroll 1,914 1,779 -7.1   3,576 3,394 -5.1   5,490 5,173 -5.8
Cecil 1,142 1,076 -5.8   2,544 2,364 -7.1   3,686 3,440 -6.7
Charles 1,664 1,669 0.3   3,083 3,319 7.7   4,747 4,988 5.1
Dorchester                      
whitetail 934 979 4.8   1,954 2,075 6.2   2,888 3,054 5.7
sika 996 1,032 3.6   997 1,078 8.1   1,993 2,110 5.9
Frederick 2,853 2,734 -4.2   5,385 5,713 6.1   8,238 8,447 2.5
Garrett 2,785 2,649 -4.9   2,450 2,273 -7.2   5,235 4,922 -6.0
Harford 1,147 1,098 -4.3   2,437 2,452 0.6   3,584 3,550 -0.9
Aberdeen Prv. Grds. 144 144 0   305 358 17.4   449 502 11.8
Howard 857 830 -3.2   1,988 2,225 11.9   2,845 3,055 7.4
Kent 1,137 1,195 5.1   2,414 2,628 8.9   3,551 3,823 7.7
Montgomery 1,580 1,531 -3.1   3,583 4,068 13.5   5,163 5,599 8.4
Prince George's 1,009 898 -11.0   1,887 1,864 -1.2   2,896 2,762 -4.6
Queen Anne's 1,241 1,266 2.0   2,767 2,885 4.3   4,008 4,151 3.6
Saint Mary's 1,111 1,276 14.9   1,943 2,592 33.4   3,054 3,868 26.7
Somerset                      
whitetail 786 841 7.0   1,895 1,737 -8.3   2,681 2,578 -3.8
sika 1 1 *   4 0 *   5 1 *
Talbot 862 860 -0.2   2,308 2,130 -7.7   3,170 2,990 -5.7
Washington 3,129 2,840 -9.2   6,098 5,747 -5.8   9,227 8,587 -6.9
Wicomico                      
whitetail 1,034 1,047 1.3   2,476 2,286 -7.7   3,510 3,333 -5.0
sika 38 29 -23.7   28 30 7.1   66 59 -10.6
Worcester                      
whitetail 1,281 1,218 -4.9   3,182 3,030 -4.8   4,463 4,248 -4.8
sika 41 52 26.8   72 158 119.4   113 210 85.8
Total 34,725 33,761 -2.8   65,712 66,902 1.8   100,437 100,663 0.2
*Small sample size                    

   February 18, 2010

Contact: Josh Davidsburg
410-260-8002 office I 410-507-7526 cell
jdavidsburg@dnr.state.md.us

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR), which celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2009, is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages more than 467,000 acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries, and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic, and cultural resources attract 12 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at www.dnr.maryland.gov