HARRISBURG – According to official 2008 bear harvest figures released today by the Pennsylvania Game Commission, hunters took a total of 3,458 bears, which included 69 bears during the archery bear season, Nov. 19-20; 2,951 bears during the statewide 3-day season, Nov. 24-26; and 438 bears during the extended season, Dec. 1-6, that was open in select areas of the state.
This harvest ranks second among Pennsylvania’s annual bear harvests. In 2005, hunters set a record harvest of 4,164 bears. Other recent harvests were: 3,075 in 2000; 3,063 in 2001; 2,686 in 2002; 3,000 in 2003; 2,972 in 2004; 3,122 in 2006; and 2,360 in 2007.
“This year’s harvest was what we had expected, as many areas had above-average bear populations,” said Mark Ternent, Game Commission bear biologist. “There were a few exceptions to this, like Clinton and Cameron counties in WMU 2G, where poor acorn crops contributed to a smaller harvest, but elsewhere across the state, harvest generally increased.