N.J. bear hunt is a 'bait and shoot,' argue protesters | State | NewJerseyNewsroom.com -- Your State. Your News.

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N.J. bear hunt is a 'bait and shoot,' argue protesters

bear031010_optBY BOB HOLT
NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM

The Division of Fish & Wildlife in New Jersey’s Department of Environmental Protection brought back the black bear hunt on a limited basis in 2003 to control the state’s growing number of bear sightings. But according to Susan Russell of the Animal Protection League of New Jersey and the Bear Education and Resource Group, the hunt is a bait and shoot.

Russell says baiting lures the bears from the wild into communities, often using carcasses, vegetables, and honey, according to lehighvalleylive.com. Baiting is not allowed in National Wildlife Refuges and the Delaware Water Gap National Recreational Area, according to the DEP.

NJ.com reported that more than 5,300 black bear hunting permits had been granted for 2012. Bear hunting season runs from Dec. 3 through 8. DEP figures said 469 bears were killed during the 2011 hunt.

New Jersey Sierra Club director Jeff Tittel says the bear hunt is unwarranted. "It is a trophy hunt, and has nothing to do with managing the bear population,” he said, according to NorthJersey.com. “It is all about sport."

The Sierra Club has proposed increased public education and better ways to handle garbage disposal as methods of controlling the bear population. Bears often roam the residential areas just foraging through garbage cans.

According to philly.com, all 21 counties in New Jersey have had bear sightings in the past ten years. American black bears are native to New Jersey. Areas included in the hunt are Warren County, and parts of Hunterdon. Sussex, Somerset, Passaic and Bergen Counties.

A group known as savenjbears.com has put up a Facebook page in memory of “Samantha,” who lived 31 years. The page says Samantha was the Bear Education and Reource Group’s mascot between 1995 and 2000, and her face was seen on the covers of newsletters, lawn signs, and advertisements.

The Bear Education and Resource Group will be having protests on Dec. 3 and 8 at 10 a.m. at the Whittingham Wildlife Management Area on148 Fredon-Springdale Road in Fredon Township, Sussex County.

 
Comments (7)
7 Saturday, 01 December 2012 12:51
Jan Fredericks, God's Creatures Ministry
God put His animals in our care to protect. Who will care for those who are maimed or for the orphans left behind? Gov. Christie, as a Catholic, should do a study of God's relationship with the hunters in the Bible. Someday we will be held accountable by God, for every one of His creatures.
Bears are not our enemy and we don't need them to survive.
Peace on earth begins with us.
6 Friday, 30 November 2012 07:46
A voice of reason
The fact that holds true is, as national and local media coverage continues to dwindle and the courts and mindful citizens of our state realize that the hunt is needed and working as well as will clearly continue to over time.

It brings to light the fact that most animal rights activists group’s like the APL of NJ, the Bear Education and Resource, and save nj bears who so publicly attack the state are actually just a small groups of misguided, emotionally charged people, who were given way to much credibility on the matter, now in the end simply spend their time trying to come up with ways to waste our tax dollars in useless court maneuvers or holding small protests were they stand road side emotionally attacking and hurling insults at or about our state officials and the legal hunters who are out there to do the job that is needed.

Ask these people why they don’t actually ever do anything positive to help the situation such as try to come up with a successful, cost effective alternative to the states scientifically based, court approved comprehensive black bear management plan.

In the end with the passage of time and the continued success of the state’s black bear management plan is that the evident irrelevance of these stated groups and their useless rhetoric will continue to simply disappear into obscurity along with the controversy they’ve tried to create.

Good Luck and THANK YOU to all the bear hunters next week.
5 Friday, 30 November 2012 00:45
Fisherman
Barbara are you a vegan? If not, your a hypocrite! Buying meat from the market is supporting animal cruelty! Google "meet your meat", watch the videos, & tell me that's humane. Mankind has been hunting/trapping (EATING MEAT) since our inception. GOD Forbid there was massive global crises, you would wish you possessed the skills needed to harvest the protein needed to sustain yourself & your loved ones existence.
4 Friday, 30 November 2012 00:39
Fisherman
Barbara are you a vegan? If not, your a hypocrite! Buying meat from the market is supporting animal cruelty! Google "meet your meat", watch the videos, & tell me that's humane. Mankind has been hunting/trapping (EATING MEAT) since our inception. GOD Forbid there was massive global crises, you would wish you possessed the skills needed to harvest the protein needed to sustain yourself & your loved ones existence.
3 Thursday, 29 November 2012 20:24
Cristina McGannon
What's cruel is allowing a population of an animal species to grow to a point that they are forced out of their natural habitat and into suburban and urban areas. There is no viable, cost-effective alternative to control the population to a healthy number. I love animals, I have respect for them and enjoy observing them in nature. When I take an animal so that my family has food on the table, I do it in the most humane way possible. I supposed getting slammed by mazda or trapped and moved is more humane?
2 Tuesday, 27 November 2012 09:37
William Rutledge
Let's get serious. People eat animals every day, sometimes 3 times a day. These animals (lamb, turkeys, cows, pigs, etc) aren't even baited - they are caged and raised to be slaughtered so that people can buy them in stores. The bears are no different than livestock - except that they have a chance to survive whereas livestock does not. Plus bear hunting performs a service to the community since it is a "managed" hunt, this ensures viable bear populations while keeping people and communities safe. So if hunting is animal cruelty, what do you call it when shoppers pay a grocery store money to have animals slaughtered? Mr. Holt, this is silly stuff. Don't you have legitimate things to cover?
1 Monday, 26 November 2012 12:45
Barbara Metzler
In New Jersey, the Definition of Animal: Includes the whole brute creation.
Statute Summary: A person commits the crime of cruelty to animals if the person: overdrives, overloads, overworks, tortures, torments, deprives of necessary sustenance, carries in a cruel manner, abandons a sick or disabled animal, cruelly beats or otherwise abuses, needlessly mutilates, or kills a living animal.
So, yes, hunting is ANIMAL CRUELTY!
And, as a non-hunting resident and taxpayer in this state, I believe that people like me should have representation. BUT WE DON’T. And this is a Democracy???

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