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Deer & Turkey Checking & Tagging

Hunting Regulations Icon Maryland Hunting

All deer and turkeys harvested in Maryland must be field tagged immediately and checked in within 24 hours via the internet, telephone, or mobile app. Each will receive its own Confirmation Number that must be recorded on the Big Game Harvest Record that is provided with your hunting license. Even those who may hunt without a License must complete the tagging and checking procedure for each deer and turkey. They must obtain a free DNRid number and free Big Game Harvest Record through the COMPASS portal at compass.dnr.maryland.gov/ OR any DNR Licensing and Registration Service Center OR a DNR Sport License agent.

Before moving each deer or turkey from the place of kill, the hunter must:

  • Complete a Maryland Deer and Turkey Field Tag in ink and attach it to the animal. The Field Tag must be attached to the head of the deer or leg of the turkey. These tags are available in the Maryland Guide to Hunting & Trapping or a tag with the appropriate information can be made by the hunter. The Field Tag must remain on the head of the deer or leg of the turkey until the animal is processed for consumption. Hunters who plan to have their deer mounted should attach the tag to the antler and not through a hole cut in the ear.
    • Place of kill is the location where the animal expired and was recovered.

Before moving each deer or turkey from the place of kill, the hunter must also:

  • Fill out a block on the Maryland Big Game Harvest Record in ink. Record the species, date, county, sex, and hunting device used. The Confirmation Number will be provided later.
  • After completing the previous two steps, the deer or turkey can legally be moved from the place of kill.

Hunters then have until 24 hours after the kill is field tagged to check in their game using one of the following:

  • the COMPASS portal at compass.dnr.maryland.gov/
  • the Maryland Big Game Registration Phone Line 1-888-800-0121
  • DNR’s official mobile app (AccessDNR)

TTY users, call through the Maryland Relay. For ease of use, deaf and hard of hearing hunters are encouraged to use the internet check-in site or mobile app.

  • Hunters should indicate the actual hunting device used to take the deer or turkey when checking their animal (not the season in which it is taken).
  • Hunters must use their DNRid number when checking in a deer or turkey. The DNRid number is printed on all hunting licenses.
  • Important: At the end of the Internet or telephone check-in process, a Confirmation Number will be issued which must be recorded in the Confirmation Number space on the Big Game Harvest Record.
  • Each deer or turkey checked in will have its own Confirmation Number. If you have a question or need to retrieve a Confirmation Number, call your local Wildlife & Heritage Service office.
  • A hunter may not remove the head or hide or any part from any deer (except internal organs), or cut the meat into parts, until the deer has been checked in and the confirmation number recorded on the Big Game Harvest Record.
  • Hunters are required to furnish the Confirmation Number to taxidermists and processors/butchers before they can leave their deer or turkey. Hunters may use the Butcher/Taxidermy Tag that is provided in the Maryland Guide to Hunting & Trapping (or a tag with the appropriate information can be made by the hunter) for this purpose.
  • The completed Big Game Harvest Record with associated Confirmation Numbers serves as the hunter’s possession tag and must remain in the hunter’s possession. If the hunter harvests more than three (3) animals (combination of deer and turkeys), they can obtain another Big Game Harvest Record free-of-charge through the COMPASS portal at compass.dnr.maryland.gov/ OR any DNR Licensing and Registration Service Center OR a DNR Sport License agent.

ATTENTION HUNTERS

Hunters have until 24 hours after the kill is field tagged to check in their game using one of the following:

  • the COMPASS portal at compass.dnr.maryland.gov/
  • the Maryland Big Game Registration Phone Line 1-888-800-0121
  • DNR’s official mobile app (AccessDNR)

To check in your deer or turkey the following will be required:

Your DNRid number:

The year of your birth in digits as it appears on your hunting license,
e.g., 1955:

The date of harvest:

The county code number for the place of harvest:

The private land code number for the place of harvest:

— Or —

The public land code for the place of harvest:

For deer-

White-tailed, fallow, or sika?

Button buck, female or antlerless male, or antlered male?

Number of antler points:

Was this deer taken with a shotgun, rifle, vertical bow, crossbow, muzzleloader, handgun, or other (air gun, etc.)?

For turkey-

Was this turkey taken with a shotgun, rifle, vertical bow, crossbow, muzzleloader, handgun, or other (air gun, etc.)?

How long is the beard; <6” or >6”?

How long are the spurs; <1/2” or >1/2”?

Record the Confirmation Number on your Big Game Harvest Record

County Code Numbers

Allegany01

Anne Arundel02

Baltimore03

Calvert04

Caroline05

Carroll06

Cecil07

Charles08

Dorchester09

Frederick10

Garrett11

Harford12

Howard13

Kent14

Montgomery15

Prince George’s16

Queen Anne’s17

St. Mary’s18

Somerset19

Talbot20

Washington21

Wicomico22

Worcester23