Hunters, Be Prepared for Bears

Bears are still out and active throughout big game hunting season in much of Montana and they are extending their ranges in some areas where populations are growing.

Hunting is a prime time to encounter a bear, especially if your are calling game, using scents or have harvested an animal. Here are a few important safety tips for hunting in bear country:

  • Always carry bear pepper spray, have it close at hand and know how to use it.
  • If you are going to be alone in bear country, let someone know your detailed plans; better yet, don’t go alone.
  • While hunting, pay attention to fresh bear sign.
  • After making a kill, get the carcass out of the area as quickly as possible.
  • When field dressing the carcass, keep your can of bear pepper spray within easy reach.
  • Use special precautions if you must leave and then return to a carcass, including placing the carcass where you can easily observe it from a distance when you return.
  • Do not attempt to frighten away or haze a bear that is nearby or feeding on a carcass.

For details on how to hunt safely in grizzly country, check the Deer, Elk and Antelope Hunting regulations available online and at FWP offices, or go to FWP’s Living with Wildlife web page.

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