Black bears

Courtesy of Crawford Notch Campground

The fall hunting season is now underway across the state. Starting Friday, hunting is open for black bears, Canada geese and gray squirrels. Deer and turkey season begins later this autumn.

New Hampshire Fish and Game officials have set a target population for black bears at just under 5,000. This year, they estimate there are more than 6,000 in the state. That means hunting restrictions will be fairly liberal -- good odds for those heading out to the woods.

Living with Black Bears in Back Yards

Jun 5, 2017

The recent saga of the troublesome family of bears in Hanover, destined to be killed after they entered a home in search of food, is one of the latest examples of conflict between black bears and humans in New Hampshire.  Governor Chris Sununu intervened, and the three yearlings were captured and relocated to the north country, although the mother bear has yet to be located.  The Hanover human-bear conflict generated concern nationwide, with hundreds signing an online petition and flooding N.H. Fish & Game with calls.  Why did this conflict resonate with so many - and how do we continue to live with bears in New Hampshire?

 


Here at Something Wild, we’ve been thinking a lot about winter and the different strategies animals use to get through these cold, harsh months. There are quite a few techniques to survive winter if you don’t live in a toasty house with central heating or a roaring wood stove.

The top 5 are:

Michael Webber via Flickr CC

Black bears are as much a part of New Hampshire as fall foliage and stone walls, nevertheless they are a misunderstood species. To better understand the species, we wanted to talk to a bear, the closest thing we could get was Ben Kilham. And that’s pretty close, which is evident when you meet him. He’s over six-feet tall and moves with a slow ambling gait. His ursine tendencies aren’t surprising when you consider Kilham’s been studying and living with black bears for nearly 25 years.

Flickr CC / https://flic.kr/p/cjdv7S

Black bears are as much a part of New Hampshire as fall foliage and stone walls, nevertheless they are a misunderstood species. To better understand the species, we wanted to talk to a bear, the closest thing we could get was Ben Kilham. And that’s pretty close, which is evident when you meet him. He’s over six-feet tall and moves with a slow ambling gait. His ursine tendencies aren’t surprising when you consider Kilham’s been studying and living with black bears for nearly 25 years.

Jeannette S. / Flicker CC

New Hampshire Fish and Game commissioners have voted unanimously to ban using chocolate as bear bait.

The ban will be phased in beginning September 1st of this year. Hunters will be allowed to use chocolate donuts and pastries this season, in order to use up any supplies of bait they’ve already purchased, but all chocolate will be prohibited in the 2016 season.

Fish And Game's Glenn Normandeau

May 11, 2015
Kevin Micalizzi / Flickr/CC

Fish and Game Executive Director joins us to discuss his agency's mission, its 150th anniversary, and its wildlife management planning process - including decisions around hunting permits and fishing catch limits.

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Casey Brown / Flickr Creative Commons

New Hampshire's state bear expert says good-hearted but irresponsible residents are "loving the animals to death.''   Fish and Game officials discovered four sites in Stoddard, North Conway and Bethlehem where residents have resumed feeding black bears despite previous warnings to stop.   Biologist Andrew Timmins says two bears had to be killed in North Conway because they had become so accustomed to human food, they were breaking into cars.

In his new book, New Hampshire’s Ben Kilham describes what he’s learned in his twenty years studying these creatures.   Contrary to their image as solitary and not-that-intelligent, Kilham finds bears capable of altruism, and cooperation. He even finds them possess a complex communication system, as well as social  behaviors that at times look a lot like ours.

GUEST:

Kirk from Wolfeboro

In his book, New Hampshire’s Ben Kilham describes what he has learned in his twenty years studying these creatures.   Contrary to their image as solitary and not-that-intelligent, Kilham finds bears capable of altruism, and cooperation. He even finds them possess a complex communication system, as well as social  behaviors that at times look a lot like ours.

GUEST: