Almost 2,000 Black Bears Harvested on Opening Day in Pennsylvania

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This year as Pennsylvania hunters took to the field on opening day for black bears, they were able to succeed in large numbers. Black bear season lasts for four days, and this year the first day fell on a Saturday. Across 52 counties hunters harvested 1,936 black bears. The archery numbers are not all completed yet so there may be more. This opening day harvest is the largest in recent years. 2005 still ranks first with over 2,000 black bears harvested on the first day. One of this year's largest bears weighed in at 746 lbs.

The preliminary first-day bear harvest by Wildlife Management Unit was as follows: WMU 1A, 8; WMU 1B, 39; WMU 2A, 2; WMU 2C, 141; WMU 2D, 82; WMU 2E, 42; WMU 2F, 200; WMU 2G, 612; WMU 3A, 160; WMU 3B, 181; WMU 3C, 50; WMU 3D, 146; WMU 4A, 55; WMU 4B, 46; WMU 4C, 41; WMU 4D, 108; and WMU 4E, 23.

The top bear harvest county in the state on the first day of season was Potter with 160, followed by Tioga, 149; Lycoming, 146; McKean, 120; and Clinton, 100.

County harvests by region for the opening day are:

Northwest: Warren, 83; Forest, 50; Venango, 28; Jefferson, 25; Clarion, 22; Crawford, 10; Butler, 7; Erie, 6; and Mercer, 4.

Southwest: Somerset, 57; Fayette, 40; Armstrong, 39; Cambria, 23; Westmoreland, 10; and Indiana, 7.

Northcentral: Potter, 160; Tioga, 149; Lycoming, 146; McKean, 120; Clinton, 100; Clearfield, 93; Elk, 82; Cameron, 65; Centre, 60; and Union, 18.

Southcentral: Huntingdon, 42; Bedford, 41; Juniata, 19; Mifflin, 17; Blair, 14; Fulton, 7; Franklin, 7; Perry, 7; Snyder, 6; and Cumberland, 1.

Northeast: Sullivan, 68; Wayne, 61; Pike, 50; Monroe, 31; Bradford, 29; Luzerne, 26; Susquehanna, 19; Carbon, 16; Wyoming, 16; Lackawanna, 13; Columbia, 10; and Northumberland, 1.

Southeast: Dauphin, 14; Schuylkill, 12; Lebanon, 3; Lehigh, 1; and Northampton, 1.From


GooseHunter Jr's picture

Man that is alot of bears

Man that is alot of bears being harvested.  Thiose number seem like they should be coming from Alaska or Canada and not a state from the lower 48.  Congrats to all the sucessfull hunters.

hunter25's picture

Great job to the hunters in

Great job to the hunters in Pennsylvania for the bear opener. I don't know what the harvest stats are in a good bear state but those numbers have to be some of the best out there. I can't even imagine that many killed in one day. I have hunted here in Colorado for more than 25 years now and still have not even seen one while I'm actually out hunting. Someday I will get one even if I have to travel somewhere else like Pennsylvania to make it happen.

Ca_Vermonster's picture

Well, that's one heck of a

Well, that's one heck of a way to start the bear season in Pennsylvania!  Very nice harvest numbers there.  My dad is from there, and has lots of relatives still living there, but I am not sure how many actually bear hunt.  They are all big deer hunters, but I don't know if they have tried other big game.

Lots of land for the bears to roam there, all over the state.  Some real big ones come out of the Poconos each year, plus other parts.  The 746 pounder was shot up in that part of the state, near all the national forests they have there.  That is an incredible bear.  Heck, a 300 bear is great, I can't believe what it would be like to have one that is 2 1/2 times that.  I can't think of how to even drag that.  You'd have to quarter it up like an elk, or hope you shot it along a road or firebreak. Geez, that's alot of bear burgers!


Retired2hunt's picture

  Wow a great opening day for


Wow a great opening day for PA black bear hunters!  Congrats to all of the successful bear hunters!  PA has always been a great place for black bear hunting.  A 746 pound brut is a huge black bear.  Also interesting is that the top 11 bears based on estimated live weight were all males.  I would have figured at least a couple of them would be females.  Based on the past several years the opening day harvests have been outstanding - especially those days that were Saturdays.  Definitely a great success and most likely will be even greater when the final archery bear are tabulated.  Dad always had fun with the black bear when participating in the PA deer hunt.  Good luck to all the other PA bear hunters and the remaining season.