By: News Intern Katherine Jones
GRAND RAPIDS- The Minnesota bear hunting season opens September 1st, and the Department of Natural Resources is asking hunters to avoid shooting marked, research bears. These bears are marked with distinctively large, colorful ear tags and have radio collars.
Researchers with the DNR are monitoring about 30 black bears across the state. Most of them are in or near the Chippewa National Forest between Grand Rapids and Bigfork. Others are farther north, near Orr or Voyageurs National Park. Some collared bears are also around Camp Ripley, and in northwestern Minnesota, especially near Thief Lake Wildlife Management Area and Plummer.
“We’re asking hunters to watch out for these valuable research bears, and avoid shooting them. These collared bears are providing much of the data that is being used in bear management,” said Dave Garshelis, DNR bear research scientist.
Any hunters who do shoot a collared bear should bring the collar to a bear registration station and call the DNR Wildlife Research Office in Grand Rapids.