NJOA Comments on Black Bear Management in New Jersey


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Jun 9, 2009
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NJOA Comments on Black Bear Management in New Jersey

New Jersey's black bear population has doubled sine 2005. Dr. Len Wolgast is an expert on black bears. He is Professor Emeritus Wildlife Ecology and Management Rutgers University. Dr. Wolgast is the primary author of the 2005 Comprehensive Black Bear Management Policy, he was a Fish and Game Council member, and is an officer of New Jersey Outdoor Alliance (NJOA). Dr. Wolgast made the following timely comments about black bear management in New Jersey:

"New Jersey presently supports a black bear population which far exceeds cultural carrying capacity the number of animals that can exist without causing too many problems for the residents of our state. The only cost effective tool that is available to reduce the bear population to a more tolerable level is hunting. The three most recent New Jersey bear seasons (2003, 2005, and 2010) have occurred under a very conservative format. They were designed to slow the growth of the bear population and gather data. It is my opinion that future bear hunting seasons will need to be designed to reduce the density of New Jersey's bear population."

Anthony P. Mauro, Sr, Chairman, NJOA, added, "Yesterday's black bear attack is only one of a number that have occurred across the country during recent months. While attacks have been infrequent in New Jersey, it should act to open the public's eyes to the fact that managing the black bear population is a serious issue and must be determined by scientists and not those who would use it for political gain."

Mauro continued, "The media has also acted irresponsibly by substituting legitimate insights from bear biologists and wildlife experts with the gibber of animal groupies. The chase to report the thoughtless spectacles of animal rights fanatics has created a circus-like atmosphere that has detracted from the urgent need for sound wildlife management practices, a scenario that puts both bears and people in harms way. We are relieved that yesterday's attack resulted in only minor injuries, but it should be a sobering omen to take bear management seriously."

Anthony P. Mauro, Sr
New Jersey Outdoor Alliance
New Jersey Outdoor Alliance Conservation Foundation
New Jersey Outdoor Alliance Environmental Projects

"Preservation through conservation"

JOIN NJOA: http://www.njoutdooralliance.org/support/njoa.html

Officers: Ed Markowski, Captain Pete Grimbilas, Jerry Natale, Len Wolgast, PhD., Anthony Mauro


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