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Black Bear Hunting Regulations

Hunting Regulations Icon Oregon Hunting

General Bear Regulations

  • Person may harvest one black bear during specified seasons with a general season black bear tag, one black bear with a SW Additional bear tag, one black bear with a controlled or SW limited spring bear tag and one black bear with a leftover controlled spring bear tag, if available.
  • It is unlawful to hunt with a centerfire or muzzleloading rifle without a valid (used or unused) deer or elk tag for certain time periods and areas.
  • The number of limited, con­trolled hunt, and general season tags issued to nonresident black bear hunters is limited to no more than 3% of all tags.
  • Using bait to attract black bear and using dogs to locate and tree black bear is prohibited. Applying a scent or attractant to one’s body or clothing while worn is not baiting.

Mandatory Check for All Bears

The skull of any bear taken must be presented to an ODFW office or designated collection site; the person who took the animal is responsible to have it presented, within 10 days of the kill to be checked and marked. The skull is required to be checked in for the purpose of inspection, data gathering, tagging and removal of a pre-molar tooth for aging. Skull must be unfrozen when presented for check-in. Check-in at ODFW offices must occur during normal business hours (Mon.-Fri., 8-5) by appointment. Remember to call ahead to make arrangements. When the bear skull is presented at check-in, information that must be provided includes: 1) date of harvest and location of harvest including Wildlife Management Unit, and 2) complete hunter information including tag number as found on the bear tag. Hunter information is on the bear tag; the bear tag, a copy of the tag, or a completed “Wildlife Transfer Record Form” (page 84) are alternatives for providing information. Hunters must still complete mandatory reporting via the internet (www.odfw.com/resources/hunting/reporting) or call toll free at 1-866-947-ODFW(6339).

By counting rings on sectioned and stained teeth, biologists can estimate the age of each bear, and determine if the bear has been ‘marked’ as part of ODFW’s tetracycline study. This information can then be used to estimate black bear populations.

This information is important for black bear management in Oregon. Hunters providing teeth will be notified of the age of their bear once laboratory analyses are complete in about a year. Removing this small tooth will not affect any taxidermy work you plan to have done with your trophy.

Please collect the reproductive tract from any female bear harvested. Reproductive tracts help the department estimate reproductive rates and litter size of bear in Oregon. Reproductive tracts are easiest to collect when field dressing your bear (see illustration on page 33). Carry a clean sandwich bag and keep the sample cooled or frozen to maintain the quality of this important sample for the department. Reproductive tracts may be delivered to any ODFW field office when you check in your bear.

Black Bear – General

Tag sale deadline: Sept. 29, 2017

Open season – Western Oregon: Aug. 1 – Dec. 31 – All units west of the eastern boundaries of Santiam, McKenzie, Indigo, Dixon and Rogue Units except those lands within one mile of Rogue Rvr between Grave Cr and Lobster Cr, which are closed.

Open season – Eastern Oregon: Aug. 1 – Nov. 30 – All units east of the eastern boundaries of Santiam, McKenzie, Indigo, Dixon and Rogue Units.

Southwest Oregon Additional Bear: Aug. 1- Dec. 31 – (all of units 20-30) Requires a resident SW Additional; a nonresident SW Additional; or a nonresident Cascade Additional bear tag. (See information below for units with nonresident tags). An “additional” tag may be purchased throughout the season; however, hunters must purchase the general season tag (see tag sale deadlines on page 7) to be eligible for the additional tag.

Bag limit: One black bear per tag, except that it is unlawful to take cubs less than one year old or sows with cubs less than one year old.

Other regulations: Mandatory check for all bears. Using dogs to locate, or kill a black bear is prohibited. Baiting black bear is prohibited. It is unlawful to hunt with a centerfire or muzzleloading rifle without a valid (used or unused) deer or elk tag for certain time periods and area.

Resident and Nonresident Black Bear Tag Areas

For general black bear season (including the additional bear tags), the 3% nonresident limit is based on the previous year’s general season black bear hunter distribution patterns by areas throughout the state. Nonresident tag numbers for 2017 cannot be calculated at the time of writing, therefore a temporary limit of 1,200 nonresident tags divided into the four nonresident black bear tag areas (Northwest, Southwest, Cascades and Eastern) will be used. The number of tags available by area, along with area descriptions, for the 2017 general season are listed below. Once black bear hunter distribution is calculated for 2016, final nonresident tags will be set in July 2017.

Nonresident hunters who wish to hunt in general black bear seasons may pur­chase their black bear tags at any license agent, via the internet, or by mail, if postmarked not later than Sept. 29 (or fax for credit card purchases). The additional tag may be purchased throughout the season; however, hunters must purchase the general season tag prior to the deadline to be eligible to purchase an additional tag. Tags will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis until gone. Ap­pli­cants should list pre­ferred hunting areas in order of priority (see area descriptions below). If you do not receive your first choice, you may receive your second or later choice depending on how many tags remain available at the time of application. Please list only areas where you are willing to hunt. See odfw.com/resources/forms_applications, for application. For additional nonresident information.

Area Descriptions/Tag Numbers:

  • Northwest: All of units 10-12, 14, 15, 17, 18. (Number of tags: 207)
  • Southwest & SW Additional Nonresident Bear Tag All of units 20 and 23-29. (Number of tags: 271)
  • Cascade Nonresident Bear Tag: All of units 16, 19, 21, 22, 30, 31, 34, 39, 41, 42 and those portions of units 33 and 77 west of U.S. Hwy 97. Cascades Additional Nonresident Bear Tag: All of units 21, 22, 30 (number of tags: 365)
  • Eastern: All of units 32, 35, 38, 40, 43 and those portions of units 33 and 77 east of U.S. Hwy 97; and all other units east of these units. (Number of tags: 357)

Note: Nonresident tags are valid for only one of the areas listed above under Nonresident Black Bear Tag Area Descriptions.

 Western Oregon: Aug. 1 – Dec. 31
 Eastern Oregon: Aug. 1 – Nov. 30
 There are no hunting seasons on NP lands or allotted and/or Tribal lands in these areas.

 

Black Bear – Controlled

Tag sale deadline: The day before the hunt begins.

Controlled hunt application procedures: All spring black bear hunts are controlled hunts. The number of hunters is limited and tags are awarded through a public drawing, except the limited SW Oregon first-come, first-served spring black bear hunt.

Bag limit: One black bear, except that it is unlawful to take cubs less than one year old or sows with cubs less than one year old.

Hunt area: Entire wildlife management unit unless indicated by an asterisk(*). Please refer to hunt descriptions below.

Regulations: Mandatory check for all bears. Using dogs to locate and tree black bear is prohibited. Baiting black bear is prohibited.

Note: The “2016 1st Choice Applicants” column is not influenced by preference points; it only indicates the number of first choice applicants for each hunt. Successful individuals may also purchase a 2017 general season black bear tag and a 2017 Southwest Additional bear tag. Controlled black bear tags not drawn in the February drawing will be sold first-come, first-served beginning Mar. 15 at 10 a.m. Tags purchased in this manner are in addition to other bear tags purchased. Hunters purchasing a SW Oregon spring bear tag prior to the drawing will not be eligible to apply for other controlled spring bear tags or utilize the Point Saver option for spring bear hunts. Hunters planning to apply for other controlled spring bear hunts or a Point Saver should wait until after the drawing to purchase a SW Oregon spring bear tag. Please note there is a limited number of SW Oregon spring bear tags available. Tag numbers listed are the 2017 tag numbers authorized by the Fish and Wildlife Commission.

Private lands will limit access for highlighted hunts. Do not apply unless you have access to a place to hunt.

Controlled Spring Black Bear Hunts

HUNT #

HUNT NAME

OPEN SEASON

2017 TAGS

2016 TAGS

2016 1ST CHOICE

APPLICANTS

710A

Saddle Mt – Scappoose*

April 1 – May 31

165

165

92

712A

Wilson-Trask*

April 1 – May 31

440

440

346

716A

N Cascades*

April 1 – May 31

385

385

283

717A

Alsea-Stott Mt*

April 1 – May 31

212

212

424

731A

South Central*

April 15 – May 31

275

275

191

741

White River Unit

April 1 – May 31

110

110

225

742

Hood Unit

April 1 – May 31

110

110

92

746A

S Blue Mts*

April 15 – May 31

660

550

691

749A

W Blue Mts*

April 1 – May 31

210

210

1,495

752A

Starkey*

April 15 – May 31

220

220

169

756

Wenaha Unit

April 15 – May 31

248

248

449

757A

Sled Springs-Chesnimnus*

April 15 – May 31

275

275

771

759A

Snake Rvr Unit

April 15 – May 31

440

440

740

760A

Minam-Imnaha*

April 15 – May 31

248

248

500

762A

Pine Cr – Keating – Catherine Cr*

April 15 – May 31

436

436

769

764

Lookout Mt Unit

April 15 – May 31

43

43

86

limited first-come, first served spring black bear HUNT

HUNT #

OPEN SEASON

2017 TAGS

SW Oregon*

Apr. 1 – May 31

4,400 (Tags will be availble on a first-come, first served basis. See hunt description below)

Controlled Spring Black Bear Hunts For Youth

HUNT #

HUNT NAME

OPEN SEASON

2017 TAGS

2016 TAGS

2016 1ST CHOICE
APPLICANTS

756T

Wenaha Unit

April 15 – May 31

55

55

38

757T

Sled Springs-Chesnimnus*

April 15 – May 31

88

88

83

760T

Minam-Imnaha*

April 15 – May 31

55

55

37

* Hunt Descriptions

Hunt 710: Saddle Mt – Scappoose – All of units 10 and 11.

Hunt 712A: Wilson-Trask – All of units 12 and 14. There are specific weapon restrictions in the Cascade Head – Lincoln City area of the Trask Unit.

Hunt 716A: N Cascades – All of Unit 16 excluding the Marion and Linn Co portion outside of the USFS lands: the McKenzie Unit excluding the Linn Co portion outside of the Willamette NF.

Hunt 717A: Alsea-Stott Mt – All of units 17 and 18. There are specific weapon restrictions in the Cascade Head – Lincoln City area of the Stott Mt Unit.

SW Oregon – All of units 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29 and 30. Exception: Lands within 1 mi of Rogue Rvr between Grave Cr and Lobster Cr are closed to bear hunting. Tags will be available on a limited first-come, first-served basis from Dec. 1 through March 31, or until the authorized number of tags are sold, whichever comes first. Note: Purchasing this tag prior to the drawing eliminates your ability to apply for other controlled spring bear tags or point savers. Please refer to note section.

Hunt 731A: South Central – All of units 31, 32, 33, 74, 75, 76 and 77.

Hunt 746A: S Blue Mts – 64% public lands. All of units 45, 46, 47, 48, 50, 51, 65, 66 and 72.

Hunt 749A: W Blue Mts – All of units 49, 54 and 55.

Hunt 752A: Starkey – 67% public lands. All of Unit 52 except the Starkey Experimental Forest and Range fenced enclosure and a 1/4-mi buffer outside the exterior 8-ft fence.

Hunts 757A and 757T: Sled Springs-Chesnimnus – All of units 57 and 58.

Hunts 760A and 760T: Minam-Imnaha – All of units 60 and 61.

Hunt 762A: Pine Cr – Keating – Catherine Cr – All of units 53, 62 and 63.

Collecting the Reproductive Tract from a Female Black Bear or Cougar

  1. Label a plastic bag with: Tag Number, Date of Kill, Unit Number and Name, County, and Your Name and Address. Ziplock type kitchen or freezer bags work very well for this purpose.
  2. Locate the “Y” shaped reproductive tract beneath and slightly ahead of the pelvis or hip bones. It usually is necessary to move some of the intestines and other organs aside to locate the entire tract, including both ovaries and the uterus.
  3. Cut the uterus immediately forward of the bladder. Use caution when handling the bladder and cutting the reproductive tract from the body cavity to insure the meat is not contaminated with urine from the bladder.
  4. Place the entire reproductive tract in the labeled plastic bag and seal.
  5. Preserve specimens by freezing as soon as possible and submit to any ODFW district office or check station.

Don’t Forget to Report

Every hunter who purchased a deer, elk, cougar, bear, pronghorn antelope or turkey tag needs to report. Complete a survey for every tag you purchased — even if you didn’t hunt or weren’t successful. Visit www.reportmyhunt.com