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Solving Problems with Nature - Naturally

ERIC P. ORFF
Certified Wildlife Biologist
Wildlife Author - Wildlife Lecturer - Wildlife Photographer
Non-Lethal Control of Bats since 1983
nhfishandwildlif@aol.com

Hunting

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME DEPARTMENT WILDLIFE DIVISION

20 November 2008
Bear Season Update # 6

As of November 20th, 426 bears (240 males, 186 females) have been reported to the bear project.  Bait hunters took 176 bears (112 males, 64 females) and hound hunters harvested 55 bears (21 males, 34 females).  These represent unofficial harvest tallies as the seasons for those methods have closed.  Still hunters/stalkers have harvested 195 bears (107 males, 88 females).  The overall harvest sex ratio is 1.3 males per female which is slightly below but similar to the long-term average (1.4 m:f).  Method-specific harvest sex ratios include 1.8, 1.2 and 0.6 m:f for bait, still and hound hunters, respectively.

Regionally, 113 bears (56 males, 57 females; 1.0 m:f) have been taken in the North, 121 (70 males, 51 females; 1.4 m:f) in the White Mountains, 136 (80 males, 56 females; 1.4 m:f) in the Central, 36 (18 males, 18 females; 1.0 m:f) in Southwest-1, 19 (16 males, 3 females; 5.3 m:f) in the Southwest-2 and 1 (1 female) in the Southeast regions.  These represent unofficial harvest tallies for all regions except the White Mountains as the season has ended in those portions of the state.  The still hunting/stalking portion of the bear season in the White Mountains will remain open until November 25th.
 
Below is a breakdown of the bear harvest through November 16th for the past 6 years.  Currently, this year’s harvest is 26% below the 5-year in-season average of 574 bears for this time period.  Additionally, the harvest is 31% below the 2007 tally at this point in the season. 

Bears have continued to remain very active over the past couple of weeks due to the abundance of acorns in many areas of the state.  During years of less abundant mast, most bears, especially pregnant females and females with cubs, typically den by early November.  Many deer hunters are reporting seeing bears while deer hunting and a number of these hunters are taking bears as the opportunity presents itself.  This trend is supported by recent harvest data as 58 bears have been taken since the start of the muzzleloader deer season.

Thank you to everyone for continuing to promptly submit registration slips to the bear project.  Please continue to submit all bear registration slips and premolars with deer data mailings during the remaining 2008 bear season.  Thanks again for your assistance.  

2008 IN-SEASON BEAR HARVEST TALLY COMPARED TO PREVIOUS 5 YEARS
AS OF 11/16/08 AS TALLIED ON 11/20/08

Year 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Date SUM SUM SUM SUM SUM SUM
9/14 381 278 204 122 249 136
9/30 617 482 329 257 473 257
10/14 706 567 360 284 525 299
10/31 760 661 417 323 575 368
11/16 791 679 434 352 613 426

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