May 27, 2020
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How deer management has evolved overtime in Maine

Aislinn Sarnacki | BDN
Aislinn Sarnacki | BDN
A white-tailed deer pauses at the edge of a field on Swan Island, a state-owned wildlife management area in the Kennebec River between Richmond and Dresden, June 10, 2017.

— 1830: First restrictions on deer hunting; season set at Sept. 1 through Dec. 31, no bag limit.

— 1873: First bag limit, three deer per hunter per year.

— 1895: Bag limit reduced to two deer per hunter per year.

— 1906: Nonresidents required, for the first time, to purchase licenses for deer hunting annually.

— 1916: Taking of deer for provisioning logging camps outlawed.

— 1919: Mandatory deer registration began; residents required to purchase “good for life” license; nonresidents still required to purchase annual license.

— 1925: Bag limit set at one deer of either sex, statewide.

— 1967: Deer hunters required to wear fluorescent orange clothing during regular firearms season in southern and central Maine. Later required statewide.

— 1977: Legislature restricted the Saturday before regular firearms season be open for resident hunting only.

— 2002: Department establishes one-day, youth-only hunting opportunity to precede the opening of resident firearms by one week. Youths are allowed to take a deer of either sex.

Source: Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife


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