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Over 7,000 apply for Wyoming grizzly bear hunt

Grizzly Bear

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Over 7,000 people have applied for a chance at drawing one of 22 tags for Wyoming’s first grizzly bear hunt in 44 years. While many applicants are hunters after the once-in-a-lifetime hunt, others have applied for the tag in hopes of blocking the hunt completely. Jane Goodall, Cynthia Moss and members of a newly-formed campaign, “Shoot ‘em With A Camera, Not A Gun,” have also applied for one of the coveted tags. Yet, regardless of the excitement and backlash surrounding the planned hunt, the chances of drawing a tag will be incredibly slim.

“The drawing odds are going to be very low,” Wyoming Game and Fish Department (WGFD) spokesperson Renny MacKay told the Jackson Hole News & Guide. “There definitely were a lot of applications for very few licenses.”

Out of the 22 available licenses, up to 10 will be doled out one at time for those hunters who are “eligible to hunt in the six interior zones” – the main region where Wyoming grizzlies roam; the other 12 licenses are for Hunt Area 7 (HA7), the Jackson Hole News & Guide reports. The state manages the grizzly bear population within HA7 and is using the hunt to keep population numbers under control.

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While 7,000 applicants may seem high, some resident hunters were surprised more didn’t apply, especially considering that it only cost $5 for residents and $15 for nonresidents to do so.

“I thought it would be in the twenty thousand,” said Joe Kondelis, director of the hunting advocacy group Western Bear Foundation. “Figure how many residents in the state of Wyoming have hunting licenses. And how cheap it was to get on the [interior hunt area] issuance list.”

Wyoming will complete its grizzly hunt draw by Aug. 2 and will run the draw exactly like other big game drawings.

“This is the same process we’ve been using for years, and it’s a random process,” says MacKay. “We definitely stand by that we’re going to do this ethically and fairly. Everyone who enters legally is going to have an equal chance of drawing.”

5 Comments

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John C. - posted 2 months ago on 07-25-2018 06:52:12 am
Scranton, PA
goHUNT INSIDER

I put in for the limited draw for Hunt Zone 7. I wonder if I don't draw a tag that I will accumulate points like other big game species.

John C. - posted 2 months ago on 07-25-2018 06:52:14 am
Scranton, PA
goHUNT INSIDER

I put in for the limited draw for Hunt Zone 7. I wonder if I don't draw a tag that I will accumulate points like other big game species.

Michael M. - posted 2 months ago on 07-24-2018 12:31:57 pm
goHUNT INSIDER

I have not read all the rules on the drawing but if she doesn't pay the $6000 it would probably go to an alternate this is how it typically works on tags you do not have to front the money. The difference is if fish and game have to pay for someone to euthanize the bear or relocate it that costs money. But hopefully all the money that is raised from the hunt can cover these costs and everyone that pays $15 for applications or $6000 for a tag is contributing to the fund.

Michael A. - posted 2 months ago on 07-24-2018 12:16:27 pm
goHUNT INSIDER

No Jane Goodall would be taking money away from conservation because I'm assuming she would not pay the 6,000$ tag fee that anyone else who drew would end up paying after they were successful in the draw. But to piggy back on what you said, the same thing happened in California after they banned lion hunting. The current yearly mortality rate from depredation permits exceeds hunt mortality from that last few years before the ban, so like you said no lives even saved.

Michael M. - posted 2 months ago on 07-23-2018 01:11:14 pm
goHUNT INSIDER

At least every "conservationist" or "environmentalist" or "activist" or whatever that buys an application in hopes of blocking the hunt is contributing money to conservation... however they most likely are not saving the bears because the hunts are targeting areas that they want to reduce the number of bears. So if not by a hunter the bears most likely will end up getting euthanized by a rancher or Wyoming game and fish.

Michael A. - posted 2 months ago on 07-23-2018 12:31:04 pm
goHUNT INSIDER

Correction Jane Goodall is not a legendary "conservationist". Conservationists believe in sustainable use ie hunting. She is an Environmental activist.