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Hunting on Private Property

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Permission Required to Hunt or Trap

In all counties, written permission is required from the property owner to hunt on private property. Written permission is required from the property owner to trap on private and public lands in all counties.


Any person hunting on private property shall be liable for any damage caused by that person to private property while hunting. The landowner may not be liable for accidental injury or damage to the hunter, whether or not the landowner or the landowner’s agent or lessee has given permission to hunt. For additional information regarding landowner liability in Maryland read Bulletin EB357 (Recreational Access and Landowner Liability in Maryland) at the Maryland Cooperative Extension’s website.

Controlling Hunter Use of Private Property

Posting property boundaries in a conspicuous manner makes it illegal to trespass or for any person to enter without the landowner’s permission. Maryland law allows the use of blue paint stripes, as well as signs, to indicate private property boundaries. Vertical paint marks at least 2 inches in width and 8 inches in length must be centered at least 3 feet, but no more than 6 feet, from the ground or water surface. The paint must be oil-based and bright blue.

Potomac River Boating Regulations

A person aboard a vessel, raft or tube must WEAR a U.S. Coast Guard Approved Type I, II, III or V personal flotation device at all times while underway on the upper Potomac River (up-river from the Little Falls Dam) and its tributaries during the period beginning at 12:01am each November 15 and ending at 12 midnight each succeeding May 15. From May 15 through November 15 all persons aboard a vessel are required to have a Type I, II, III, or V personal flotation device on board and readily available. In addition to the above PFD requirement, a Type IV throwable device is required on all vessels 16 feet and longer.

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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Conservation Partner Advertisements: The Maryland Department of Natural Resources allows appropriate advertising in its annual regulation guides in print and online, in order to defray or eliminate expenses to the state, and support enhanced communications with Maryland Department of Natural Resources Constituents. Through a unique partnership with J.F.Griffin Publishing, LLC &, ‘Conservation Partners’ have been established that pay for advertising in support of the regulations both in print and online. The Maryland Department of Natural Resources neither endorses products or services listed or claims made; nor accepts any liability arising from the use of products or services listed. Advertisers interested in the Conservation Partners program should contact J.F.Griffin/ directly at 413-884-1001,
This is not the full law. Consult the Maryland Department of Natural Resources for further details. All persons are reminded that the statutes, code and regulations are the legal authorities.
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