More than 9,000 permits will be available for this year’s 2011 black bear season, about the same as 2010.
State Natural Resources Board members approved a level of 9,005 permits, nearly identical to the 2010 permit offering of 8,910, according to Linda Olver, a bear ecologist with the state Department of Natural Resources.
A bear population study completed in 2008 estimates Wisconsin’s bear population at at least 22,000. DNR biologists set the recommended 2011 harvest quota at 5,235 bears, the same as 2010’s quota. That quota is based on the population estimate, the state’s bear population goal of 13,000, hunter success rates, harvest, bait station visitation rates, nuisance complaints, agricultural damage and public input.
Wisconsin’s preliminary 2010 black bear harvest total stands at 5,056. al 22 percent.