For Release: Friday, October 28, 2011
DEC Urges Hunters To Not Shoot Radio Collared Bears
Collared Bears Part of Research Project
NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) today urged hunters to not shoot black bears that are wearing radio collars while hunting this season. As part of an ongoing research project in parts of Allegany, Steuben, and Livingston counties, DEC and Cornell University have fitted 24 black bears with GPS collars that will be used to track the bears' movements.
"Hunter cooperation is appreciated as we work to continue this important research that will help wildlife managers understand how bears are using the habitat in this portion of New York," said DEC Senior Big Game Biologist Tim Spierto.
Due to the significant effort DEC and Cornell have expended to capture and mark these bears, DEC is urging hunters not to shoot bears that are wearing GPS collars, while at the same time reminding them that doing so is not illegal. If a hunter does choose to harvest a collared bear, it is important that the collar be returned to the nearest DEC office so its data can be recovered. Hunters may report sightings of collared or tagged bears to the DEC's office at (716) 372-0645.
DEC's website has more information about black bears and more detailed information about the radio collar research project is available at on the New York State Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research website (see right column for link).
Regular big game season begins this year on Saturday, November 19, 2011 and lasts through December 11, 2011. The taking of black bear is now permitted concurrent with the opening day of regular gun season for deer. Please be sure to refer to the Regulations Guide to determine which areas are legal for bear hunting. See the Regulations Guide that is available online.