WATERBURY, Vt. — Vermont’s bear hunting season opens next month.
Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department officials say the state’s black bear population has grown over the last two years and is now estimated to be slightly more than 6,000. Officials say that’s above the objective of 4,500-6,000 bears listed in Vermont’s Big Game Management Plan for 2010-2020.
Twenty-five years ago Vermont had fewer than 3,000 bears, mostly in the mountains and Northeastern part of the state.
Wildlife biologist Forrest Hammond says changes in hunting regulations have expanded the population.
He says there are more cases of bears doing damage when they are attracted to bird feeders, pet food left outside, garbage cans, barbecues, livestock and field corn.
The bear season runs from Sept. 1 to Nov. 16 this year.