The Ontario Ministry Of Natural Resources and Forestry has announced the expansion of the spring bear hunt. SCI Canada has worked diligently over the past 20+ years to bring back this hunt as it was cancelled because of political pressure without and against science. Congratulations to the current government for recognizing this and doing the right thing. Dwight James, Chair of the Canada committee, expressed, “[W]we are extremely pleased with the decision by OMNRF to extend the pilot project to all WMU’s in Ontario. Wildlife management should always be done using science and facts rather than emotion and politics”
In 2014, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) introduced a two-year black bear pilot that included a limited early bear hunting season in response to increasing concerns in some northern communities about conflicts with black bears.
The spring black bear hunting pilot has now been extended for five years in all provincial Wildlife Management Units with a fall bear hunt. It will also include non-resident hunters.
Under the expanded pilot, it will still be illegal to shoot cubs and female bears with cubs. In most cases, each licensed hunter will be allowed to hunt one bear in each calendar year. The placement of baits used in the baiting of bears will be regulated during all bear hunting seasons to help reduce the potential conflict with people living and carrying out other recreational activities in nearby areas.
The extension will allow the ministry to gather further information to assess concerns voiced by Ontario’s communities about human-bear conflicts, and to support economic growth and tourism in the north and central parts of the province. The ministry will continue to monitor and evaluate the success of this pilot.