Avondale WMA

Flock of wild turkeysLocated on the outskirts of Westminster, Maryland the property was deeded to the Department of Natural Resources by the estate of Mildred M. Tarkington in January 2005. The 180-acre tract is dedicated to wildlife conservation.

What To See

Avondale WMA provides habitat for upland and forest wildlife species primarily white-tailed deer, wild turkey, squirrel, and songbirds.

What To Do

The area is open to hunting for all game species during the regulated hunting season established by the Maryland Wildlife and Heritage Service. Hunters are required to have a permit and a daily reservation to access the area. Outside of the hunting season this area is open to hiking, bird watching, and nature photography.

Area Regulations

  • Access to Avondale WMA is restricted from September 1 through February 28 for the hunting season for seasonal permit holders with daily reservations (except on Sundays). This restriction is also in place during the spring turkey season.
  • Click here to apply for the free Central Region Public Hunting Permit.
  • No motorized vehicles are allowed.
  • Horseback riding is prohibited.
  • Parking is available at the end of Windy Hill Drive.
  • Use of rifles is prohibited.
  • Non-Hunting Users

  • Outside of the hunting season Avondale WMA is open to hiking, nature photography, and bird watching.
  • Site Management Practices

  • Avondale WMA consists of 26-acres of cool season grasses with the remaining acreage being forested land.
  • Land management practices include mowing fields and trails annually.
  • Periodic border edge cuttings are conducted to maintain openings in the forest to benefit a variety of wildlife species.
  • DirectionsMaryland map showing approximate location of Avondale WMA

    Avondale WMA is located on the southwest side of Westminster, Maryland. Public access to this area is on Windy Hill Drive off of Old New Windsor Road (which parallels Maryland State Route 31). Take Windy Hill Drive and follow the signs up a gravel driveway to the parking lot located at the end of Windy Hill Drive. For additional information or seasonal permits, contact the Gwynnbrook Wildlife and Heritage Service Office at 410-356-9272.

    Click Here for Map

    This area is a part of Maryland’s Department of Natural Resources public land system and is managed by the Wildlife and Heritage Service. The primary mission of the WMA system is to conserve and enhance wildlife populations and their respective habitats as well as to provide public recreational use of the State’s wildlife resources.

    Eighty-five percent of the funding for Maryland's state wildlife programs comes from hunting license fees and a federal excise tax on sport hunting devices and ammunition. The federal aid funds are derived from the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration (or Pittman-Robertson) Fund, which sportsmen and women have been contributing to since 1937. Each state receives a share of the funds, which is administered by the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service; these funds are used for wildlife conservation and hunter education programs, including the management of the WMA system.

    Other sources of funds for land acquisition include Program Open Space Funding for Maryland's State and local parks and conservation areas, provided through The Department of Natural Resources' Program Open Space. Established in 1969, Program Open Space symbolizes Maryland's long-term commitment to conserving natural resources while providing exceptional outdoor recreation opportunities.​