Crossbow Deer Hunting Opens October 1 - Southern Maryland Headline News

Crossbow Deer Hunting Opens October 1

ANNAPOLIS (September 19, 2007) — Dear hunters may use crossbows during Maryland’s Archery Season from October 1 through October 15 and January 15 through January 31.

All crossbow hunters must possess a Resident or Non-resident Hunting License and a Resident or Non-resident Bow Stamp. Any white-tailed deer or sika deer taken with a crossbow will count toward the appropriate Regional Bow Bag Limit. All bow hunting regulations apply to crossbow hunters.

In addition, crossbows must have a minimum draw of 75 pounds and a working safety. Arrows and bolts used for deer hunting must have sharpened broadhead with a cutting surface with a minimum width of 7/8 inch. A cocked crossbow may not be transported in a vehicle.

Any deer taken with a crossbow or vertical bow must be registered with the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) by calling 1-888-800-0121 or through the Internet at Deer taken with crossbows will be registered as taken with a crossbow. Deer taken with straight limb, recurve or compound bows will be registered as taken with vertical bows. Maryland DNR deer biologists will continue to evaluate any influence of the crossbow to the deer management.

Thirty-three sika deer and 1,024 white-tailed deer were killed during the 2006-2007 four-week crossbow season. During this same four-week period, 54 sika deer and 3,342 white-tailed deer were killed with vertical bows. The top counties for the crossbow season were: Baltimore County (116); Montgomery County (92); Washington County (91); Garrett County (75); Howard County (70); Harford County (68); Allegany County (61); Frederick County (56); Charles County (54); and Anne Arundel County (48).

Maryland’s Crossbow Deer Hunting Season is one component of DNR’s deer management activities. Maryland deer hunters purchase more than 50,600 bow stamps annually. Nearly 7,000 archery deer hunters indicated that they use crossbows. Archery hunting combined with firearm and muzzleloader deer hunting, provides 900,000 hours of outdoor recreation while managing white-tailed deer and sika deer populations. Each year deer hunting contributes more than $150 million to Maryland’s economy.

Complete bag limits, season dates and bow hunting regulations can be found at the DNR website at The 2007-2008 Guide to Hunting & Trapping in Maryland, issued with each hunting license, also contains detailed information about all of Maryland’s hunting seasons.

Source: Md. Department of Natural Resources (DNR)

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