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Two-day total of bears killed reaches 167
12/6/2005, 4:55 p.m. ET
The Associated Press

VERNON, N.J. (AP) — At least 167 bears have been killed in the first two days of New Jersey's black bear hunt, according to data released Tuesday, putting the hunt on pace to eclipse the number slain in a 2003 hunt.

But the head of the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife, who attributed the quick start to favorable weather conditions and the popularity of Monday's opening day, said he expects the total from the six-day hunt to be close to the 328 bears killed in the last hunt, two years ago.

The number of daily kills — 136 on Monday — will likely drop as the six-day season goes on, said Martin McHugh, director of the Division of Fish and Wildlife.

"The hardcore people who have the time on their hands will hunt all week long," McHugh said. "So opening day is usually a good day for whatever species, whether it's ducks, deer or bear. Also, the quarry gets wary. They start learning that there's people out there that are looking for them and that makes it more difficult, too."

In the 2003 hunt, the state's first in more than three decades, 123 bears were killed on opening day and 69 on the second day.

This time around, there are 1,200 fewer hunters with permits. According to the state, 4,434 people obtained permits to participate in the hunt, which is aimed at reducing New Jersey's black bear population in the wake of dozens of run-ins between bears and people this year.

The state will consider ending the hunt early only if hunters kill more than 25 percent of the 230 bears that have been previously caught and tagged by wildlife biologists this year, according to McHugh. As of 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, 32 tagged bears had been killed, he said.

The state releases daily kill totals at 3:30 p.m., but the count includes only the number of bears reported killed by 2:30 p.m. that day. Weigh stations, where hunters take their kills to be registered, stay open until 8 p.m.

As a result, each day's actual daily kill isn't known until the following day. Thirty-one bears had been reported killed by 2:30 p.m. Tuesday.

No injuries have been reported in the hunt, and no "hunter harassment" arrests have been made, despite continuing reports of animal rights activists confronting hunters in the woods, McHugh said.

The state is investigating one allegation of illegal baiting, he said. Under New Jersey law, bear hunters are banned from shooting within 300 feet of bait.
 

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
The state is investigating one allegation of illegal baiting, he said. Under New Jersey law, bear hunters are banned from shooting within 300 feet of bait.
Wasn't this mentioned on the this web site already? I think some guy "slipped" in an article that was posted on here.
 
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