Deer in Spring Landscape

Youth Opportunities

Man shows small boy how to hold a bow and arrow

National Hunting & Fishing Day

Held annually on the 4th Saturday in September, this family-oriented day offers fun and educational hands-on activities that everyone will enjoy. It is a great way to introduce young people and newcomers to outdoor sports, while teaching them about the important role that hunting and fishing play in Maryland’s wildlife conservation programs. There will be displays for hunting and fishing equipment and demonstrations of outdoor skills. This event is FREE to the public.

Photo of Teal (AKA Morgans Choptank Cinnamon Teal JH) with the kids at Lower Shore Junior Hunter Field Day.

Junior Hunter Field Days

Held several times a year at different locations throughout Maryland, these day-long events are FREE and open to young people, ages 8 to 16.  Under the guidance of wildlife professionals, Junior Hunter Field Days provide safe, enjoyable, and hands-on opportunities for young people to learn about hunting, trapping and its important role in Maryland’s wildlife conservation. All equipment is provided. A free lunch is also offered to attendees (youth & parents), so preregistration is required.

Woman shooting

NEW Hunting & Shooting Sports Outreach Program

The primary goal of this program is to provide the ‘next step’ for novice hunters and shooters such that they will feel comfortable moving forward in the shooting and hunting sports as a result of their experience in the workshop. The program will be a series of ‘mini-workshops’ in partnership with public shooting ranges and other appropriate venues. These mini-workshops are designed to be as hands-on as possible, giving participants enough knowledge to further pursue their interests once the workshop is concluded. Registration now open.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation awarded a $25,000 grant to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources- Wildlife & Heritage Service (WHS) to help create a new Maryland Hunting & Shooting Sports Outreach program.

Maria Wilder took a 95 pound white-tailed deer with a rifle on the 13th day of November, 2010 in Frederick County.

Junior Hunt Days

These are days set aside during the deer, turkey, and waterfowl hunting seasons where only youth are allowed to hunt. All hunters participating in these Junior Hunt Days must be accompanied in the field by an individual who is 21 years old or older; possesses a valid Maryland hunting license, or is exempt from hunting license requirements; and is not afield with a firearm, bow or other hunting device.

Hunters 16 years of age or younger may participate in the Junior Deer Hunt and the Junior Turkey Hunt if the individual possesses a valid hunting license or is exempt from Maryland hunting license requirements.

Any licensed hunter 15 years old or younger may participate during the 2 hunting days of the Youth Waterfowl Hunt. Youth of this age who are exempt from Maryland hunting license requirements may also participate. Youth waterfowl hunters must possess a receipt showing they purchased a $9 Maryland Migratory Game Bird Hunting Stamp.

Special Junior Hunter Opportunities

Places where junior hunters get to hunt that no one else can.

Maryland Junior Hunter Certificate Program

The Maryland DNR- Wildlife & Heritage Service will provide Junior Hunters (age 16 and under) with a free certificate commemorating their deer, turkey, or bear taken during the current hunting seasons. Photographs of Junior Hunters and their game can be included on the certificate and will also be posted on DNR's online Junior Hunter Photo Gallery.

Mentored Youth Hunt Group Photo at Pintail Point

Mentored Youth Hunts

Maryland’s mentored youth hunts provides a positive hunting experience, educates parents/guardians how to be a good hunting mentor, and the youth as well as their parents/guardians are informed about what conservation groups are available for them to get involved with and how. Thus giving participants enough knowledge and contacts to further pursue their interest beyond these one day events.Youth who have recently completed a hunter safety class and are new to hunting are sent invitations to apply to participate in this program. Participants are selected by lottery.

1st Place Carroll County Envirothon Team - 2010

Maryland Envirothon

If you are a teenager who is wild about nature and the great outdoors, consider joining your school's Envirothon team. Envirothon is a fun and exciting way for high school students in grades 9-12 to learn about the natural world around us and earn scholarship money for college. As an Envirothon team member, you will learn first hand from the experts about the many ways that all living things are connected and the complex environmental issues affecting the world today.

2006 NASP Tournament winners, courtesy of Jon Gauthier

National Archery in the Schools Program

Students are taught how modern archery equipment works, shooting techniques, steps to archery success, and how to improve their skills. The act of shooting the bow improves upper body strength, grip strength, muscle endurance and flexibility. Archery also develops hand-eye coordination, dexterity and the importance of learning how to focus or concentrate.


For more information, contact:
Patricia Handy
(410) 260-8537