Saturday, October 14, 2017

Bear hunt in New Jersey nets 241 kills by Saturday night


Michael Izzo and Matt Kadosh report for NorthJersey.com

Hunters had killed 52 bears by 9 p.m. Saturday night, bringing the number of bears harvested on the sixth day of New Jersey’s bear hunt to 241, a Fish and Wildlife spokesman said.

With the potential for hunters to drag more kills from the forest overnight, final figures would be posted on the state Department of Environmental Protection’s website by 8 a.m., said a spokesman, Robert Geist.

While the figures marked a significant decrease from the 562 killed during last year’s hunt, an animal rights activist told a reporter the numbers don’t matter.

“The senseless slaughter of young cubs and yearlings and moms for trophies, mounts and rugs,” said Angi Metler, director of the Bear Education and Resource Group. “That’s what this hunt is about. Don’t kid yourself. It’s not about numbers.”

Bill Crain, another activist, knew he would be arrested Saturday morning when he left the designated protest zone at the Whittingham Wildlife Management Area. It wasn’t the first time he left a bear hunt protest in handcuffs.

An animal rights activist and professor at the City College of New York, Crain spent a week in jail this January after protesting last December’s bear hunt in the state.

“I was in jail eight days the last time I did this,” Crain said. “This would be the eighth time so it will probably be more.”

With a sign that read “Mother Nature is Crying” hanging from his neck, Carin crossed the street and walked toward the bear check-in station, where he was stopped by New Jersey State Police and Conservation Police, handcuffed, and placed in a trooper’s car.

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