4-day extension for black bear hunting season in New Jersey

Officials had hoped to harvest 20 percent of the population during the regular hunting period.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2022
NJ extends black bear hunting season 4 more days
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Hunters are allowed to go out for four more days to help with overpopulation.

TRENTON, New Jersey (WPVI) -- An extended black bear hunting season in New Jersey begins Wednesday.

Hunters are allowed to go out for four more days to help with overpopulation.

The season extension will begin a half-hour prior to sunrise on Wednesday, Dec. 14 and will end a half-hour after sunset on Saturday, Dec. 17.

Officials had hoped to harvest 20 percent of the population during the regular hunting period. The total ended up being six percent.

The Department of Environmental Protection's New Jersey Fish and Wildlife reminds hunters of the following important changes now in place as part of emergency rulemaking adopted last month reinstating the hunting season:

  • Hunters may not attempt to take or kill a black bear weighing less than 75 pounds (live weight), or less than 50 pounds dressed.
  • Hunters may not attempt to take or kill an adult black bear that is in the presence of cub(s) (bears weighing less than 75 pounds).
  • Hunters may not attempt to take or kill a black bear or have a loaded weapon within 300 feet of a baited area when hunting bears.
  • The state's bear hunting regulations call for the mandatory closure of the season once the cumulative rate of tagged bears brought to check stations reaches 30 percent.

    The bear hunting zones include all of Sussex, Warren, Morris, and Hunterdon counties, as well as portions of Passaic, Somerset, Bergen, and Mercer counties.