Scientific Collection Permit/License

Any properly accredited person of known scientific attainment desiring to collect wildlife, nests, or eggs from the wild for scientific or educational purposes must first obtain a Scientific Collection permit from the Wildlife and Heritage Service of the Department of Natural Resources. This permit is also required to capture, mark, and release wildlife.

Public educational institutions also need this permit to salvage wildlife and to maintain specimens for educational purposes.

Depending on your collection methodology and target species, you may also need an Endangered Species permit and/or an Aquatic (Fisheries) Scientific Collection permit*. If you are unsure which permits you need you can complete our Collection Permits Questionnaire or contact us at

*If you are interested in the collection of FISH or other AQUATIC LIFE, please contact the Fishing and Boating Service by email at

Permit Requirements

A Scientific Collection permit is valid through December 31 of the issuing year. An annual report must be filed by December 31 of the issuing year; failure to submit an annual report may result in revocation of existing permits or rejection of future applications.

A federal permit from the United States Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) and/or the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) may be required to collect and/or possess migratory birds or federally listed species. For more information please see the USFWS and USDA websites.

The permit becomes void on proof that the permittee has:

  1. Captured or killed any wildlife;
  2. Taken any nests or eggs for other than scientific or educational purposes; or
  3. Taken or possessed any wildlife, nests, or eggs not authorized by the permit.

How To Apply

Applicants must complete a Scientific Collection permit application and mail it, along with a check or money order for $10 (payable to Department of Natural Resources) to:

Wildlife Permits Coordinator
MD DNR - Wildlife and Heritage Service
580 Taylor Ave., E-1
Annapolis MD 21401

Request by Phone:
(410) 260-8540
Toll-free in Maryland:
1-877-620-8DNR [8367], Extension 8540
TTY: Maryland Relay via 1-800-735-2258 or 711

Request by Mail:
Wildlife Permits Coordinator
MD DNR - Wildlife and Heritage Service
580 Taylor Ave., E-1
Annapolis, MD 21401

The Tawes State Office Building is open to customers by appointment only; walk-in customers will not be accepted without a confirmed appointment.

To schedule wildlife permit appointments please email or call 410-260-8540.