With that information now in their hands, the seven member Wildlife Board, which is appointed by the Governor, unanimously approved the spring hunt to begin on April 8, 2006 and run until May 31, 2006.
Officials feel that the best way to protect the species is to protect the female bear populations. Previous studies have shown that in the spring, male bears appear from hibernation sooner than females with their cubs. The new spring hunt will forbid the shooting of any bear in the presence of cubs. Studies have also shown that the number one predator of bear cubs is the male bear. So reducing the number of male bears should decrease the mortality rate of the cubs.
The number of permits to be issued for the spring hunt is 172 and 13 going to Indian tribes. The fall hunt will have 70 issued.