Wisconsin 2012 Bear Season Information

Wisconsin DNR, Bear Hunting Magazine
01/31/2012

The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board approved a lower bear hunting quota for the upcoming 2012 season. It was set at 4,600, which is down 12% from the 2011 harvest goal of 5,235. Around 9,015 permits will be given, which is comparable to last year. The permit numbers were not lowered since the success rate of hunters have been down in the past few years.

Approximately 27,000 hunters have applied for the 9,015 permits available for the 2012 season. An additional 77,598 applied for a preference point only. Applicants currently need to have collected between four and nine preference points in order to successfully draw a bear harvest permit. The permit breakdown by zone for 2012 is as follows: Zone A – 3,425 permits; Zone B – 1,335 permits: Zone C – 2,970 permits; and Zone D – 1,285 permits. The 2012 bear hunting season runs September 5 through October 9.

Wisconsin’s preliminary 2011 black bear harvest total stands at 4,246. This number is expected to change only slightly in coming weeks as harvest data are fully entered and verified.


ORIGINAL NEWS FLASH FROM 1/23/12:
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Board is set to consider reducing the number of bears taken for the 2012 season at their planned meeting in Madison this week.

The Wisconsin DNR has proposed setting this year's harvest target at 4,600, down from 5,235 in 2011. This new goal would translate to fewer permits in three of the state's four bear hunting zones. Officials stated that they want to make the move because the bear population appears to have stopped growing or may be declining after several years or higher harvest goals. The agency stated that they want to be cautious until it receives the findings from their 2011 population study later this year.



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