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The 2014 New Jersey Freshwater Fishing Guide is now available!
To view the new guide, please download the pdf. Check back in the coming days as we work to put up the new 2014 website.

Below is content from the 2013 guide.

Firearm Regulations

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Shotgun Regulations

  • Shotguns may be used to hunt all game birds, game mammals (except beavers, weasels, mink, muskrats, and river otters), nutria, and woodchucks. The magazine and chamber must be capable of holding no more than 3 shells total except for resident Canada geese during the September season, light geese when prescribed in the annual hunting regulations, or deer hunting (where the number of shells is restricted to 8).
  • Shotguns larger than 10 gauge may not be used to hunt migratory game birds.
  • Nontoxic shot larger than No. T (.20 inches in diameter) may not be used to hunt waterfowl and coots.
  • The possession or use of lead shotgun ammunition while hunting waterfowl, coots, snipe, and rails is prohibited.
  • Deer and bear hunters using shotguns must use ammunition that fires a solid, single projectile. Buckshot may not be used to hunt deer except in Dorchester County, where #1 size buckshot or larger may be used. The use of shotguns smaller than 20 gauge for deer and bear hunting is not permitted.
  • A person hunting turkeys in the spring season shall be restricted to only using shot sizes #4 or smaller. A person hunting turkeys in the fall season shall be restricted to only using shot sizes #4 or smaller or a solid, single projectile.

Rifle Regulations

  • Air rifles are legal to use for hunting in Maryland and must comply with the rifle regulations. Air rifles may not be used to hunt turkeys in the spring season or migratory game birds. They are not legal for deer or bear hunting because they do not meet the minimum muzzle energy standard for rifles noted below.
  • It is unlawful to hunt with an automatic firearm capable of firing a series of shots with one continuous pull of the trigger.
  • Rifles used for deer and bear hunting must use ammunition developing a muzzle energy of at least 1,200 foot pounds.
  • Firearms used for deer and bear hunting may not have an ammunition clip loaded with more than 8 cartridges or bullets. If a clip has the capacity to hold more than 8 rounds, the clip does not have to be physically blocked, but no more than 8 cartridges or bullets may be loaded.
  • Rifles may be used to hunt all game mammals (except beavers, weasels, mink, muskrats, and river otters), turkeys during the fall season only, quail, pheasants, ruffed grouse, crows, nutria, and woodchucks.
  • It is only lawful to hunt with ammunition of soft point (expanding) construction. All military, full metal jacketed, incendiary or tracer bullets are prohibited.
  • Breech-loading rifles are those that are not loaded from the muzzle and include, but are not limited to, break action, bolt action, pump action, lever action, falling block, and semi-automatic rifles. Breech-loading rifles may not be used to hunt deer in Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Calvert, Caroline, Charles, Frederick (in that portion of Frederick County lying south of a line beginning at the Washington/Frederick County line at US Rt. 40 and continuing on Rt. 40 east to Harmony Road, proceeding south on Harmony Road to I-70, following I-70 east through Frederick County), Harford, Howard, Kent, Montgomery, Prince George’s, Queen Anne’s, St. Mary’s and Talbot Counties or in Worcester County as follows: (1) within one mile of any school, (2) within that portion of South Point lying south of a line beginning at the west end of the Sinepuxent Bay Bridge on State Rt. 611, then by and with the south side of Rt. 611 to the junction of the South Point Road going south for a distance of 0.6 miles to a point opposite the southern boundary of the Ocean City Golf and Yacht Club property on the west side of the road, then by the southern boundary of the Ocean City Golf and Yacht Club to Trappe Creek and (3) within that portion of the land lying south of a line beginning at the mouth of the St. Martin River northwest to the junction with Shingle Landing Road, then by and with the south side of Shingle Landing Road to the junction with State Rt. 113, then by and with the east side of Rt. 113 to the junction with Rt. 589, then by and with the east side of Rt. 589 to the junction with US Rt. 50, then by and with the north side of Rt. 50 to the junction with Assawoman Bay, then by and with the west boundary of Assawoman Bay to the junction with the St. Martin River.

Contact the Maryland State Police (800-525-5555) for information about the purchase, possession, transport and use of certain rifles.

Muzzleloader Regulations

  • Muzzleloading rifles may be used to hunt all game mammals (except beavers, weasels, mink, muskrats, and river otters), turkeys during the fall season only, quail, pheasants, ruffed grouse, crows, nutria, and woodchucks. Muzzleloading shotguns may be used to hunt all game birds, game mammals (except beavers, weasels, mink, muskrats, and river otters), nutria, and woodchucks.
  • Muzzleloaders used for deer and bear hunting must be at least .40 caliber in size and use not less than 60 grains of black powder (or a black powder equivalent) and propel one all-lead, lead alloy or copper soft-nosed or expanding bullet or ball at a single discharge. Sabot loads are legal.
  • It is permissible to hunt deer with a muzzleloading rifle or muzzleloading shotgun in all counties. Telescopic sights may be used on a muzzleloader.
  • Flintlock, percussion cap, and inline ignition muzzleloaders are legal hunting devices. To be considered a muzzleloader, a rifle, shotgun or handgun must be loaded from the muzzle, and a revolver must be loaded from the front of the cylinder.
  • Muzzleloaders are considered unloaded if the ignition system is disabled by removal of the cap, primer, battery, or primer powder.

Handgun Regulations

  • Modern and muzzleloading handguns may be used to hunt all game mammals (except beavers, weasels, mink, muskrats, and river otters), turkeys during the fall season only, quail, pheasants, ruffed grouse, crows, nutria, and woodchucks.
  • Modern handguns may be used to hunt deer only in those counties where the use of a breech-loading rifle for deer hunting is permitted with the exception that modern handguns may be used to hunt deer throughout Frederick County. Any modern handgun used for deer and bear hunting must have a barrel length of 6 inches or more and use ammunition which produces a muzzle energy of 700 foot-pounds or more.
  • Muzzleloading handguns (both single shot and revolvers) may be used to hunt deer in all counties. Muzzleloading handguns used for deer and bear hunting must be at least .40 caliber in size with a barrel length of at least 6 inches and use not less than 40 grains of black powder (or a black powder equivalent) and propel one all-lead, lead alloy or copper soft-nosed or expanding bullet or ball at a single discharge.

Contact the Maryland State Police (800-525-5555) for information about the purchase, possession, transport and use of certain handguns.

 

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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