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The 2014 New Jersey Freshwater Fishing Guide is now available!
To view the new guide, please download the pdf. Check back in the coming days as we work to put up the new 2014 website.

Below is content from the 2013 guide.


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Open season
(All Dates Inclusive)

Daily BAG limit

possession limit

season limit

Black Bear

Zones 1-9

Sept. 2 – Sept. 20
Nov. 3 – Nov. 22

See “Black Bear,” below.


Bear hunting closed during shotgun deer season.


Permit required (see Licenses, Stamps & Permits). Limit one bear per year. Hunting allowed in Zones 1–9 ONLY. Hunting only with rifle .23 caliber or larger, muzzleloader .44–.775 caliber, bows with a draw weight of 40 lbs. or greater, or revolvers .357 Magnum or .40 caliber or larger. Revolvers permitted during September season only. Use of shotguns and use of dogs for training or hunting is prohibited (see Hunting Dogs on General Hunting Regulations). Baiting of bears is prohibited. Hunting hours close ½ hour after sunset except as noted in WMA Reg. #10 (Wildlife Management Area Regulations). Successful hunters must immediately fill out and detach bear tag from permit and attach tag to bear prior to moving it, and then must check/report their harvest within 48 hours by EITHER 1) reporting online and writing the harvest report confirmation number on tag attached to the bear (see Massachusetts Gun Laws for details), or 2) bringing the bear to an official check station. Bear can only be field dressed, must not be concealed (bear or part of bear must remain open to view during transport), and must remain intact or whole (do not skin, butcher, or take to a taxidermist for mounting) until it has been checked/reported.

ANIMALS Tagged for Research

Some bear, deer, coyotes and other animals may have ear tags or radio collars. It is legal to harvest them. If you find or take one of these animals, contact DFW’s Field Headquarters (508) 389-6300 immediately. You will be asked for information that will help biologists determine the source and status of these animals AND you will be asked to return the equipment to the DFW. Thank you for your cooperation.

How Old is That Bear?

If you harvest a bear, the DFW requests that you submit a tooth for aging. Please follow the instructions below.

  1. bear_age.jpgRemove the first premolar (see photo), or ask a DFW staff member to collect the tooth. This is a very small tooth, just behind the large canine tooth. It does not matter if you take the left or the right tooth. However, the root is the most important part. Do not break the tooth.
  2. Using a small sharp knife, or a sharp ¼-inch wood chisel, slide the blade down the side of the tooth and cut or separate the gum tissue where it sticks to the tooth. Using a small needle-nose pliers or the pliers on your multi-tool, wiggle the tooth slightly until you can pull it out of the jawbone and the gum. The tooth is only about ½-inch (or less) in length. Go easy and do not break it.
  3. Put the tooth in a small envelope, and mark it with your name and the seal/confirmation number of your bear. Put the small envelope in a regular mailing envelope and send it to: Bear Project, Division of Fisheries & Wildlife Field Headquarters, Westborough, MA 01581. Be sure to enclose your name and mailing address.
  4. All bear teeth from both seasons are sent out for processing in January. The ages are then received by the Division of Fisheries & Wildlife in May or June, and you will be notified of the age of your bear at that time.


Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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