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Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

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Monday, February 9, 2015

Colorado Parks and Wildlife estimate that there are 16,000 to 18,000 black bears in the state.............. The bear hunting season runs from the first week of September to the second week of November........... In 1992, the citizens of Colorado approved Amendment 10, which banned the spring bear hunt and outlawed the use of dogs and bait in hunting bears---Mother bears with cubs were also prohibited from being killed............. 1,172 bears, (688 males and 484 females), were killed by hunters in 2012......................... . The statewide annual kill average over the past ten years has been 710 and the average for the past three years is 990 bears...........Of course, there are Lawmakers in Colorado who are Ranchers and Hunters who feel an additional month of Bear hunting(month of August)) should be allowed.............Their feeling is that the Bear population has reached nuisance levels(has our human population reached that level also????) and more bears need to be removed from the land..................Most biologists feel that the Black Bear population has been relatively stable for years...............We see it as a good thing that the August hunt and the use of "scent" toi bait bears has been put on hold and instead a study of the bear population by a variety of stakeholders(hunters/ranchers/wildlife advocates) will take place to determine if bear hunting rules should be modified in any way going forward

Bear-hunting bill stalls

Is more hunting is needed? Lawmakers may study

Lawmakers may choose to study if holding a hunting season for black bears is appropriate.Enlarge photo
Steve Lewis/Durango Herald
Lawmakers may choose to study if holding a hunting season for black bears is appropriate.
DENVER – A measure that would allow hunting of black bears when they are most active stalled Monday as lawmakers work on a compromise.
The measure, sponsored by Rep. Yeulin Willett, R-Grand Junction, may be resurrected as a study after concerns were raised that the measure was premature without proper analysis.
Rural Coloradans complain that the bear population is increasing, causing loss of livestock and dangerous encounters with the public.
Rep. J. Paul Brown, R-Ignacio, is familiar with the subject. A sheep herder, Brown has lost dozens of his herd to bear attacks.
On one occasion, Brown slept outside with his herd in an effort to kill the bear who was costing him thousands of dollars in losses. He woke up to find the bear standing so close to him that he could feel its breath on his face.
With instinct kicking in, Brown punched the bear in the face and then went searching for his gun in the dark so that he could fire one in the bear’s face. Brown won that night, but he worries about others.

“Parks and Wildlife should be managing these bear, and right now the only thing they can do is when we have these problem bear, is they just kill them and then haul them to the dump,” said Brown, who carried a similar bill that failed in 2011. “Why not let some hunters do it?”
The bill this year originally sought to allow an August hunt, while permitting Parks and Wildlife to authorize hunting from Sept. 1 to Oct. 31. The legislation would have also clarified that the use of scents is not baiting.
Voters in 1992 prohibited the bear-hunting season from beginning before September. Voters also banned hunting with dogs or bait, or killing bears with cubs.
Willett asked the House State, Veterans and Military Affairs Committee to delay the bill for more than 30 days while he works on putting a stakeholder group together to study the issue. The committee agreed.
“It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking of this as a bear-hunting bill. It’s not a bear-hunting bill,” Willett told the committee. “It’s a problem that has grown in the state to involve farmers and ranchers, people in their homes, hunters, the Division of Parks and Wildlife, and the bears themselves.”
Wildlife advocates acknowledged the problem. But they said more research and stakeholder involvement should be accomplished before changing statute.
“If that process allows for wildlife advocates and equal numbers to other stakeholder groups, then we can come up with a set of recommendations that are perceived to be fair,” said Holly Tarry, vice president of Colorado Voters For Animals, a group committed to animal protection. “That makes the process of putting those recommendations into place far more likely.”

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