Kodiak Sees Decline in Bears Killed in Defense of Life, Property

On average Kodiak residents kill 15-20 bears each year in defense of life or property. This year only one has been killed. Alaska Department of Fish and Game Wildlife Biologist Larry Van Daele says the sharp decline in threatening bear encounters is probably a result of hunter education and a good berry season.

Van Daele says the most common situations when humans will have a dangerous encounter with a bear are either during fall hunting or if a bear becomes used to human food or garbage. He says that ADF&G has worked to educate people on how to avoid bears.

Van Daele adds that if someone is out hunting and a bear gets to their kill first, the meat belongs to the bear. Hunters cannot defend their kill, but can defend themselves.

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