NORTHERN MICHIGAN (WPBN/WGTU) -- Preliminary results from the 2018 bear hunting season are in with numbers slightly below the harvest target.
For the 2018 hunting season, approximately 54,000 hunters applied for 7,140 bear hunting licenses, the same number of licenses that was available last year.
In 2017, 1,691 bears were taken. This year, preliminary numbers appear to be slightly below the 1,500-target harvest.
“Bear hunting seasons have staggered openings across the state, so we have seasons that have been opening and closing since early September,” said Swanson. “All bears must be registered within 72 hours of harvest, so eventually we’ll have all that information, along with completed hunter harvest surveys, to give us great data regarding days of hunter effort and also success rates.
Hunters can weigh-in on bear regulations at an upcoming forum.
Bear regulations are reviewed every two years, making 2019-2020 a new regulation cycle and an opportunity to review potential harvest quotas.
On Dec. 14, the Bear Forum will meet in St. Ignace at the Little Bear East Arena, located at 275 Marquette St., from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The Bear Forum is made up of stakeholders and non-affiliated individuals who have an interest in Michigan’s bear management. Public seating will be available.