Maryland Hunters Double Up on Black Bears

Hunters killed 103 black bears during the Maryland hunt this year, twice as many as in 2021 thanks to a combination of factors.

Maryland Hunters Double Up on Black Bears

Hunters in Maryland killed twice the number of black bears in 2022 as they did the previous year. Photo:

Maryland hunters killed 103 black bears during the state’s six-day hunt held in four counties, double the number from the 2021 hunting season. 

The hunt was held Oct. 24-29, 2022 in Allegany, Fredreck, Garrett and Washington counties. Hunters had an extra day this year, along with better weather conditions and more participation, state officials said. Final numbers included 41 boars, 62 sows and an additional 10 bears (three boars, seven sows) killed Sept. 1-Oct. 31, 2022 by farmers using agricultural damage permits. 

“Bear hunters enjoyed prime fall weather this year to spend time with friends and family pursuing one of our most recognizable game species,” Wildlife and Heritage Service Director Paul Peditto said. “Bear hunting remains an essential tool for managing our expanding bear population to minimize human conflicts and ensure it remains healthy for future generations.” 

This was the 19th year for the hunt. The 2021 hunt was hampered by poor weather and abundant natural food sources, which slowed the harvest. This year, better weather and typical fall food conditions were more favorable for hunting. The harvest was slightly lower than the previous five-year average of 116 bears.

  In the 2022 harvest, the average weight was 177 pounds. The heaviest bear was a 427-pounder killed in Garrett County. Officials said 67 percent of the bears were taken on private land, and 950 permits were awarded out of 4,755 applications.


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