The Maryland Department of Natural Resources reminds hunters of all ages that Feb. 8 is a Youth Waterfowl Hunt Day. This is a great chance for qualified mentors to take a young or aspiring waterfowler into the field to teach hunting skills, reinforce the safety lessons of hunter education classes, and to create memories that will last a lifetime.

“Mid-winter hunting may include tough conditions that challenge youth hunters, making this opportunity to harvest a bird all the more special because of those challenges,” Wildlife and Heritage Service Director Paul Peditto said. “Few things are more gratifying than mentoring a new hunter and returning home with a stronger sense of conservation values.”

Anyone 16 years of age or younger may hunt ducks, geese, mergansers, and coots on both public and private land when aided by an unarmed adult at least 21 years old. All junior hunters and their adult mentors must possess Maryland hunting licenses or be license-exempt. Youth hunters, including those possessing an apprentice license, must purchase a Maryland Migratory Game Bird Stamp, but do not need to purchase a federal duck stamp if under 16 years of age.

The bag limits for the hunting days are the same as the regular seasons except:

Two black ducks may be taken
One Canada goose may be taken when hunting within the Atlantic Population Canada Goose Hunting Zone
Five Canada geese may be taken when hunting within the Atlantic Flyway Resident Population Canada Goose Hunting Zone.

Licenses, stamps, and permits may be purchased online by phone at 855-855-3906, at a Natural Resources Service Center or at any one of the more than 250 Sport License Agents statewide.

Hunters with questions may contact the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Wildlife and Heritage Service at 410-260-8540.

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