56 Black Bears Killed During Maryland's 2008 Hunting Season

OAKLAND, Md. — Maryland’s 2008 black bear season opened Monday, October 20, one half-hour before sunrise in Garrett and Allegany Counties and closed Thursday, October 23, at 9 p.m.

56 bears were reported taken as of 9 p.m. on October 23. The harvest objective for the 2008 bear hunt was 55 to 75 bears. The average estimated live weight of the bears taken during the 2008 hunt was 178 lbs. The largest bear of the season was a 332 lb. male taken by Matt McKenzie of Frostburg, Md.

“This was the first year that the new preference point system could be used by hunters to gain an advantage in the drawing,” said Jonathan McKnight, Acting Director of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife & Heritage Service. “Although only 56 percent of the applicants entered the drawing with a preference point, 70 percent of those who drew permits had preference points. It appears that this new system DNR implemented based on hunter input was effective in its first year”.

For more information about Maryland’s black bears visit http://www.dnr.maryland.gov/dnrnews/infocus/blackbear.html.

The hunt by the numbers:

* 56 bears taken
* 46 from Garrett County, 10 from Allegany County
* 178 lbs. average weight
* 86 percent of the bears were taken on private land
* 59 percent of successful hunters live in the hunt area
* 452 hunters participated in the hunt and 3,278 hunters applied for a permit

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