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Record-high Harvests Reported in Nine Counties

News Release, Maryland Department of Natural Resources

Maryland hunters reported harvesting 4,303 wild turkeys during the 2020 regular spring and junior hunt turkey seasons, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources announced. This year’s harvest surpassed the previous high of 4,175, set in 2017, and was 8% higher than the 2019 harvest of 4,002 turkeys.

“This year’s harvest suggests that many hunters took advantage of abundant turkey populations in much of the state,” Wildlife and Heritage Service Director Paul Peditto said. 

The percentage of juvenile turkeys or “jakes” reported in the harvest (24%) was at its highest level since the 2012 spring season. This supports other survey data showing that the summer of 2019 was an excellent year for turkey production and boosted populations significantly.

Turkey numbers have also grown and expanded in many areas where they have not traditionally been abundant. Record-high harvests were reported in nine counties – Baltimore, Caroline, Cecil, Charles, Frederick, Kent, Montgomery, Prince George’s, and St. Mary’s.

Washington County reported the highest harvest this year with 439 turkeys, followed by Garrett County with 387 and Charles County with 369.

Youth hunters kicked off the spring turkey season statewide on April 11 with the Junior Turkey Hunt. An additional junior hunting opportunity occurred on April 12 in select counties. In total, junior hunters harvested 248 wild turkeys, a 22% increase from last year’s junior hunt weekend.

Total harvests by county are below:

County20162017201820192020
Allegany256293250278286
Anne Arundel4558497481
Baltimore5251555665
Calvert7359766882
Caroline172149135152180
Carroll761031037393
Cecil6987698994
Charles265320336348369
Dorchester274303212221211
Frederick299332313304348
Garrett387429412429387
Harford11012710512488
Howard3424363334
Kent181174168166206
Montgomery94135149135162
Prince George’s879176105109
Queen Anne’s190160115145144
Somerset150163145129171
St. Mary’s188202191188226
Talbot8894808795
Washington355426459414439
Wicomico206175139155193
Worcester223220188229240
Statewide3,8744,1753,8614,0024,303

David M. Higgins II, Publisher/Editor

David M. Higgins was born in Baltimore and grew up in Southern Maryland. He has had a passion for journalism since high school. After spending many years in the Hospitality Industry he began working in...