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Maryland Muzzleloader Season for Deer Reopens Dec. 15

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources announced today that the second segment of the muzzleoader deer hunting season opens Dec. 15 and runs through Dec. 29, 2018. Hunters may use muzzleloading firearms to harvest sika and white-tailed deer during this season.

“The late muzzleloader season is a great time for hunters to enjoy some colder weather while hunting with friends and family during the holidays,” Wildlife and Heritage Service Director Paul Peditto said. “The added harvest during this season helps the department manage the state’s deer population.”

Hunters are encouraged to consult the Maryland Guide to Hunting and Trapping for recent changes to bag limits, registration procedures and regulations.

During muzzleloader season, Maryland requires deer hunters and their companions to wear daylight fluorescent orange or fluorescent pink in one of the following manners: a cap of solid fluorescent; a vest or jacket containing back and front panels of at least 250 square inches of fluorescent; or an outer garment of camouflage fluorescent worn above the waist and containing at least 50 percent fluorescent color.

Hunters should carefully inspect all tree-stands and always wear a full-body safety harness while climbing in or out and while in the stand. The department strongly recommends using a sliding knot, commonly known as a prussic knot, attached to a line that is secured above the stand that allows the hunter to be safely tethered to the tree as soon as they leave the ground.

Maryland hunters are encouraged to donate any extra deer they may harvest to Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry. New this year, hunters may claim a tax credit of up to $50 for each legally harvested deer that is processed and donated to a nonprofit food sharing program. The maximum credit in any one tax year is $200 per hunter. The approved form to claim this credit is available online.

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