2022 bear hunt lottery opens

Photo by Bob Geary via the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

ANNAPOLIS — The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is accepting applications for the 2022 black bear hunt lottery, according to a press release from the office.

Successful applicants will receive a permit valid for the six-day hunting season, which for the first time includes a Saturday.

The hunt will be open Oct. 24-29 in Allegany, Frederick, Garrett and Washington counties.

"The annual bear hunt, now in its 19th year, is an important management tool used to slow the increase of Maryland’s black bear population and limit expansion of Maryland bears into the eastern suburbs and cities," the release stated.

The department will again issue 950 hunting permits this year.

“Maryland’s science-based bear hunt remains well-regulated and sustainable,” Wildlife and Heritage Service Director Paul Peditto said via the release. “Allowing hunters to make use of one of the state’s greatest renewable natural resources helps us achieve our goal of limiting the increase in our bear population, while guaranteeing a secure future for this species in Maryland.”

Hunters may apply for the lottery online or at one of more than 250 hunting and fishing license agents across the state. Hunters need a valid DNR ID number to participate.

All entries must be completed by 11:59 p.m. Aug. 31 and be accompanied by a $15 nonrefundable application fee.

"Only one application per person will be accepted," the release stated. "Submitting duplicates can result in disqualification and forfeiture."

The drawing will be held Sept. 7, and winners will be notified shortly thereafter.

"When applying for a permit, hunters can make voluntary contributions to the Black Bear Damage Reimbursement Fund, which directly reimburses Maryland farmers who have suffered agricultural damage caused by black bears," the release stated. "The fund has paid farmers more than $130,000 since its establishment in 1996."

Teresa McMinn is the Digital Editor for the Cumberland Times-News. She can be reached at 304-639-2371 or tmcminn@times-news.com.

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