Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) has released details for hunting waterfowl on the refuge during the 2019-2020 season. Designated hunt units at the refuge can be reserved each week of the hunt via phone on a first come, first served basis. Waterfowl hunting on the refuge will take place only on Wednesdays and Saturdays, October 12 –19, November 16- 27, and December 18, 2019 – January 29, 2020. Complete details concerning the waterfowl hunt, including a regulation/instructional brochure, FAQs, hunt maps and boat access photos, must be obtained through the refuge’s website at: http://www.fws.gov/refuge/blackwater/visit/hunting.html.
This year, Blackwater NWR is pleased to announce the opening of new waterfowl hunt units along the Nanticoke River and Marshyhope Creek. A total of seven (7) hunt units may be reserved for hunting on all available dates October through January. Two (2) units are located on Marshyhope Creek just north of Brookview, while five (5) units are located on the Nanticoke River just south of the confluence of the Nanticoke and Marshyhope Creek.
As in past years, seven (7) hunt units will be available for hunting only during the early season in October and November: three (3) units on the Blackwater River west of Route 335, two (2) units at Beaver Dam Creek, and two (2) units at Goose Dam Creek. A total of six (6) hunt units will be available only during the late season (December and January): two (2) each at Barren Island, Spring Island, and Bishop’s Head in the Chesapeake Bay.
All hunt units are only accessible by boat. Retriever dogs are permitted during the hunt. Hunters are encouraged to make a scouting trip to their desired unit prior to hunting. Scouting is permitted only during specified days as outlined in the hunt brochure.
Hunters wishing to reserve a hunt unit must follow the refuge’s call-in procedure. Reservations will be taken each Monday from 8:00am to 9:00am for hunt days available that week. In the hunt brochure, please note call-in date exceptions due to holidays. Hunters must call the refuge’s reservation line at 410-221-8155. Only the individual with the reservation, and up to three additional individuals, will be allowed to hunt each unit. Each hunter must possess a signed waterfowl hunt permit.
There is no fee for waterfowl hunting on the refuge. All hunting will follow Maryland State regulations and bag limits. In addition to a refuge waterfowl hunting permit, a hunter must be in possession of a valid Maryland State waterfowl hunting license, Federal Migratory Hunting and Conservation (Duck) Stamp, Maryland State Waterfowl Stamp, and government issued photo identification. If you have any questions about the hunt, please call 410-228-2677.
Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, located on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, protects over 29,000 acres of rich tidal marsh, mixed hardwoods and pine forest, managed freshwater wetlands and cropland for a diversity of wildlife. To learn more, visit our website at www.fws.gov/refuge/blackwater or Facebook @BlackwaterNWR.
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.