Expanded bear hunt brings opposing opinions

The expanded New Jersey bear hunt is bringing about opposing opinions.

The expanded New Jersey bear hunt is bringing about opposing opinions. (8/13/15)

WEST MILFORD - The expansion of New Jersey's Bear hunt is drawing both criticism and praise.

West Milford resident Rick Ashely says his family regularly has to deal with bears, which he says constantly break into his "bear-proof" garbage cans, eat the fruit from his apples trees and just generally cause a nuisance.

Ashley was happy to hear that the state decided to expand the hunt.

"It will be a good balance and the state can shut [the hunt] down when the numbers are satisfied," he says. "When I say shut it down, I mean that [each] season they have to have it open every year. Just like deer season. Just like other seasons."

The expansion adds six days to the season, beginning in October 2016. The policy also broadens hunting territories that will now include most of New Jersey's northern forests.

However, not everyone is in favor of the large hunt. Jeff Tittel with The New Jersey Sierra Club says just having a bigger hunt won't work.

"The Christie administration has eliminated almost all the education programs," says Tittel. "They've eliminated non-lethal bear management methods, which are teaching bears to be afraid of people by using air horns and pepper sprays... We're not enforcing 'do not feed the bear' laws."

Tittel says The Sierra Club would support a bear hunt under the proper circumstances, but says that the governor's administration has had a failed policy in managing bears. 

The DEP commissioner still needs to sign off on the new hunting parameters. Hunters will be allowed to kill one bear in each of the two annual seasons.

advertisement | advertise on News 12

Trending Video

From left to right: New Jersey State Trooper 1 New Jersey state troopers help deliver baby on I-287
The Pascack Valley High School girls lacrosse team 2 HS lacrosse team 'adopts' 8-year-old fighting brain cancer
An Amtrak power problem in one of the 3 More headaches for LIRR riders after Amtrak power problem
News 12 New Jersey - Weather On The 4 New Jersey Weather Forecast
Sea Cliff's Troy Ramey was voted off 'The 5 Elisa's Entertainment for 4/26

advertisement | advertise on News 12

More News

NJ Fish and Game Council votes to expand Council votes to expand bear hunting season

The New Jersey Fish and Game Council voted to expand bear hunting season in an

The NJ Fish and Game Council approved adding Council approves additional bear hunt for 2016

The New Jersey Fish and Game Council on Tuesday approved adding an October hunt, expanding

Sorry to interrupt...

Your first 5 are free

Access to News12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service Electric℠ video customers.

Please enjoy 5 complimentary views to articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.