Maryland’s New Winter Turkey Season to Open Statewide

This month kicks off Maryland’s first-ever winter turkey hunting season, taking place January 22-24 statewide. The new season will provide hunters with increased turkey hunting opportunities while minimizing conflicts with other seasons.

The bag limit is one turkey, of either sex. Hunters who took a turkey in the 2014 fall season may not harvest any in the winter. Hunting hours are one half-hour before sunrise to one half-hour after sunset. Weapons are limited to shotguns loaded with #4 shot or smaller. Crossbows or vertical bows are also legal. Harvest reporting requirements are the same as other turkey seasons. Hunters may check-in their harvests via phone, internet or mobile device with theAccessDNR app.

Winter hunting will generally require different techniques than those used in the spring when turkeys are breeding. For example, hen calls and decoys will be less attractive. Hunters should consider using traditional fall season tactics such as locating food sources, scattering a flock once found, and using “assembly” or “lost” calls to attract winter turkeys.

Complete regulations, check-in procedures and information on public land hunting opportunities can be found online at dnr.maryland.gov/huntersguide or in the 2014-2015 Maryland Guide to Hunting & Trapping issued with each hunting license.