Spring bear season in WI?

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Dewey
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Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby Dewey » Wed Feb 05, 2020 11:38 am

I just read in the latest WI Outdoor News that NRB Member Terry Hilgenberg is adding a question on the April 13th Fish & Game hearings asking if we should open a Spring Bear season of 2-3 weeks.

Reasoning is to distribute hunting pressure and could result in a higher quality fall hunt.

Not sure how I feel about that. The quality of the fall hunt is pretty darn good already and one of the best in the country. I say don’t fix what ain’t broke.

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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby john1984 » Wed Feb 05, 2020 11:41 am

It would be cool to hunt during the bear rut
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby Freelance Bowhunter » Wed Feb 05, 2020 11:56 am

Count me in. I would totally do it!
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby strutnrut716 » Wed Feb 05, 2020 2:25 pm

I would say yes, probably. Depends on the timing of it.

If its the same time as turkey season I could see some conflicts there. However, I've seen quite a few spring bears while turkey hunting in northern Wis... Bet they are real hungry then ... :dance: :dance: :dance:
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby wiscbowhntr » Wed Feb 05, 2020 2:36 pm

Dewey wrote:I just read in the latest WI Outdoor News that NRB Member Terry Hilgenberg is adding a question on the April 13th Fish & Game hearings asking if we should open a Spring Bear season of 2-3 weeks.

Reasoning is to distribute hunting pressure and could result in a higher quality fall hunt.

Not sure how I feel about that. The quality of the fall hunt is pretty darn good already and one of the best in the country. I say don’t fix what ain’t broke.

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Have you hunted zone C on public? The quality has gone way down since they started handing out more tags. If they hand out the same amount of tags for the year and split them between spring and fall I am all in.
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby Jonny » Wed Feb 05, 2020 2:39 pm

I don’t see any issue with it. Think part of the reason the fall hunt is good is that there is so few tags and a general abundance of bears. I’m guessing it will be limited amount so it shouldn’t have much of an impact on the fall hunt and could be a real treat. Not sure what states have spring season but could be a good out of state attraction to hopefully capitalize on. Maybe not since we can never take advantage of non residents that come here for what we have.

I’m seeing more bears than ever deer hunting in zone c. Lots of bear hunters but 90% of the baits I find are close enough to the road for me to hit my tires if I take a leak on the pile.
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby Dewey » Wed Feb 05, 2020 2:47 pm

wiscbowhntr wrote:
Dewey wrote:I just read in the latest WI Outdoor News that NRB Member Terry Hilgenberg is adding a question on the April 13th Fish & Game hearings asking if we should open a Spring Bear season of 2-3 weeks.

Reasoning is to distribute hunting pressure and could result in a higher quality fall hunt.

Not sure how I feel about that. The quality of the fall hunt is pretty darn good already and one of the best in the country. I say don’t fix what ain’t broke.

Comments....


Have you hunted zone C on public? The quality has gone way down since they started handing out more tags. If they hand out the same amount of tags for the year and split them between spring and fall I am all in.

I would never hunt Zone C. The two bears I killed were in Zone A and hope to draw there again in a few years.

I agree splitting tags between spring and fall would really cut down hunting pressure but for those that only like to hunt in the fall the length of time to draw might actually be increased especially up north.
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby Chuck B » Wed Feb 05, 2020 3:34 pm

Interesting. After this past bow deer season where I saw a bear on about 40 percent of my hunts, I would be in favor of more tags being issued and reducing the bear numbers. At least in NW WI.
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby dan » Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:08 pm

It would be cool to hunt bears in rut, but it would get a lot easier to kill them in rut. My cameras show huge boars in daylight constantly during the rut. However, if it split the dog season from the baiting season, it would be worth it. If it meant two seasons like we already have, I may need a little convincing
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby Freelance Bowhunter » Thu Feb 06, 2020 12:47 am

The rut is in June, really late June is the peak, and I doubt if they would do that. I suspect you would be looking at May, which would be just as good or better. Big male bears are hard to get on a bait with any degree of consistency during the rut, they often just cruise by the baits scent checking the area. Baiting bears in the spring has a lot of advantages because you're not competing with nearly as much natural foods, and the days are longer which reduces the amount of nocturnal activity.

Absolutely LOVE spring bear hunting.
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby Dewey » Thu Feb 06, 2020 12:15 pm

What about spring bear with dogs?

Dogs running sows and splitting them up from fresh out of the den cubs might not be a good thing. I realize that can happen in fall but the cubs are not nearly as helpless then.

Just thinking out loud here and wondering if that would make sense.

The more I think about it the more I would like to see a spring season using bait. It would be cool to have another hunting option other than turkey.
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby Manitoba derek » Sat Feb 15, 2020 4:26 am

I obviously live in Manitoba where we have a spring bear season that we run baits for. Honestly I would never hunt bear another way. The number of times you see a big sow and your trying to sex her then all of a sudden 15 min later 2-3 cubs come walking in that she had stashed close by. Baiting in the spring season is the only way to ensure clean ethical kills are made and selectively harvesting mature boars to ensure the longevity of our spring traditions. I am also a firm believer that dogs have no place in hunting bear unless you are tracking a wounded or lost bear. In Manitoba we are not even allowed to track with a dog. If they do give you guys a spring season I hope for your sakes your allowed to hunt over baits and no dogs outside of tracking.
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby PK_ » Sat Feb 15, 2020 4:48 am

Dewey wrote:I just read in the latest WI Outdoor News that NRB Member Terry Hilgenberg is adding a question on the April 13th Fish & Game hearings asking if we should open a Spring Bear season of 2-3 weeks.

Reasoning is to distribute hunting pressure and could result in a higher quality fall hunt.

Not sure how I feel about that. The quality of the fall hunt is pretty darn good already and one of the best in the country. I say don’t fix what ain’t broke.

Comments....


Not from WI but I would encourage hunters to strongly support any (reasonable) increase in hunting opportunity ESPECIALLY for that species.

I dream to spring bear hunt but likely will never have the opportunity since so few states have a season...
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby purebowhunting » Sat Feb 15, 2020 5:58 am

I'd live to see a spring bear season come to WI, I'd actually be more prone to do it than in the fall when there are other things to hunt. I've been looking into starting traveling west for spring bear.
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Re: Spring bear season in WI?

Unread postby 218er » Sat Feb 15, 2020 3:17 pm

Michigan is kicking around a similar idea. Most Canadians I’ve spoken with about bear hunting only hunt the spring season if given an option. I’d imagine historical success rates are higher in spring seasons and that would likely be factored into tags offered.
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