Hunting in Maryland

Maryland Hunting at Glance

Maryland is a small but diverse state with a rich hunting tradition. The state offers a variety of hunting opportunities, from deer and turkey hunting to small game and waterfowl hunting. There are also many different types of hunts available, from bow hunts to rifle hunts.

Sand dunes and salt marshes can be found in eastern Maryland, as well as sea grass and mangrove swamps. On the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay, you’ll discover wildlife-rich dunes and marshes, as well as salt marshes and cypress trees.

To the west, the rolling hills and oak woods give way to pine groves and mountains as high as 3,360 feet in western Maryland near the border with West Virginia, where you may find the North Branch of the Potomac River’s headwaters.

Maryland is most famous for its big waterfowl hunting. Duck and goose hunting in the Chesapeake Bay, and along its many tributaries and marshes, is steeped in history and tradition. Maryland has a wide variety of waterfowl species to hunt, and there are several excellent waterfowl outfitters across the state.

Garrett and Allegany counties in western Maryland are home to a large black bear population, allowing hunters to target Maryland’s biggest game animal. The lottery for obtaining a Bear license is open.

Maryland ranks #35 in the nation for hunting license per capita with over 1.9% of the population classified as registered hunters.

Key Insights

  • Maryland is a small, diverse state with a variety of hunting opportunities, including deer, turkey, small game, and waterfowl.
  • The state has different types of hunts available, such as bow hunts and rifle hunts.
  • Bear hunting is also possible in the western part of the state, with a lottery available for obtaining a bear hunting license.
  • Most of the land in Maryland is private, with only 5.5% considered huntable public land. The state ranks 29th in the nation for acres of public huntable land.
  • Deer hunting is the most popular type of hunt in Maryland, with rifle, bow, and muzzleloader hunts available.
  • The Maryland DNR is the best source for accurate information on hunting seasons and requirements, including tag and bag limits.

Table of Contents

Hunters (Based on Hunting Licenses)
Population: 6,177,224
Hunters 117,367
Hunter % 1.90%
Hunters Rank 35

The state of Maryland is predominantly private land and only 5.50% of the total acres could be considred huntable public land. In fact, Maryland ranks #29 overall in acres of public huntable land.

Land Types (Acres)
Acres % Rank
Total 6,256,000
Huntable Public 344,000 5.50% 29
Private Land 5,827,020 93.14% 18
Tribal Land 0 0.00% no tribal land

Maryland ranks #18 for the percentage of private land vs total acres and doesn’t have any tribal land.

Maryland Hunting Seasons & Requirements

For the most accurate information on Maryland Hunting Seasons, along with the state’s requirements for tag and bag limits, it’s a good idea to check with the Maryland DNR.  We’ve provided their contact information below, along with links to helpful resources, including licensing.

Maryland DNR


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Popular Game to Hunt in Maryland

The most common type of hunt in Maryland is deer hunting. Deer are the most popular game animal in the state, and there are many different ways to hunt them. The most common deer hunts are rifle hunts, which take place during the fall hunting season. Bow hunts and muzzleloader hunts are also popular options.
Other popular game animals to hunt in Maryland include turkey, small game, and waterfowl. There are 25 different waterfowl species that can be hunted in Maryland, and excellent waterfowl outfitters are found statewide.

Small Game Hunting in Maryland

Maryland is a small game hunter’s paradise, with an abundance of squirrels, raccoons, rabbits, opossums, and groundhogs to be found in the woods and fields. Each of these animals provides unique challenges and rewards, making for an exciting and varied hunting experience. Squirrels are among the most common small game animals in Maryland, and can be found in both forest and scrubland habitats. Raccoons are also fairly common, and are often found near water sources such as lakes and rivers. Rabbits can be found in a variety of habitats, including open fields and woodlands. Opossums are typically found in wooded areas, while groundhogs are most commonly found in agricultural areas such as farms and fields. Regardless of which species you’re after, small game hunting in Maryland is sure to provide a fun and challenging experience.

Big Game Hunting in Maryland

Maryland is home to a variety of big game, making it a popular destination for hunters from all over the country. The most popular animals to hunt are whitetail deer, black bear, and mule deer. Pronghorn and elk are also popular, but are less common in the state. Each of these animals presents a unique challenge, and all require different hunting strategies. For example, deer are most active at dawn and dusk, while bears are active at night. Mule deer can be found in open meadows, while pronghorn prefer open plains. Elk tend to stay in forested areas. As a result, hunters need to be familiar with the habitat of their target animal in order to have the best chance of success.

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Where are the Best Areas to Hunt in Maryland

Maryland offers great hunting opportunities across the state, both on public and private land. We’ve included some of the best areas for public hunting below and as we have access we’ll be adding more private land too.

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Popular Public Hunting Land in Maryland

Maryland is home to a variety of public lands that provide great opportunities for hunting. Big Run State Park, located in Garrett County, is a popular spot for deer hunting. The park also offers opportunities to hunt for squirrels, rabbits, and grouse. Rocks State Park, located in Harford County, is another popular spot for deer hunting. The park also has a wealth of other wildlife, including turkey, quail, and dove. Patuxent River State Park, located in Anne Arundel County, is a great place to hunt for waterfowl. The park also offers opportunities to hunt for deer, squirrels, and rabbits. Seneca Creek State Park, located in Montgomery County, is a popular spot for deer hunting. The park also has a variety of other wildlife, including beaver, bobcat, and weasel. Deep Creek Lake State Park, located in Garrett County, is a great place to hunt for waterfowl and deer. The park also offers opportunities to hunt for turkey and grouse.

1. Big Run State Park
2. Rocks State Park
3. Patuxent River State Park
4. Seneca Creek State Park
5. Deep Creek Lake State Park

Hunting Private Land in Maryland

Since the majority of Maryland is private land getting access for hunting can be very appealing. When you hunt private land, it’s not only less crowded, the animals also tend to be less skittish and this means you’ll have a better day out in the field.  Traditionally, accessing private land for hunting has been complicated and expensive.  You either needed to join a club, hire a guide, or start knocking on doors.

Fortunately Wing It is simplifying this for hunters and outdoor enthusiasts of all types. We’re adding new land every day and if we have some in your area, you’ll see some options great below.

More Private Hunting Land

• 80 acres •
  • Hunting
  • Others activities
    • Woodchuck and rabbit hunting
  • Hunting
  • Others activities
    • Woodchuck and rabbit hunting
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