I will see if I can clear this up for you...............there are a lot of part truths on here but not the complete picture.
When the requirement first came into place for black bear under CITES, you had to get a CITES permit to accompany the bear back to the US with you. This was a monumental pain in the ass for outfitters and hunters as most Fish & Wildlife offices are not open on weekends..........well you get the picture.
After a lot of talk back and forth between the US and Canada.......as there are thousands of bear hunters each year............they came up with an easier method.
US bear hunters can export their black bear trophy to the US with their valid hunting licence/tag while it is in a fresh, frozen or salted condition and accompanies the hunter. So if you take it with you back home right after the hunt, then you do not need a CITES permit. (This only applies to US hunters who have hunted in Canada and are taking their bear back home, as well as Canadians who hunted black bear in the US and are taking it back home to Canada.......................it does not apply to hunters from other countries.......they still require a regular CITES permit to export their black bear trophy.)
If you leave it in Canada to be mounted, then the exemption no longer applies and the taxidermist will have to get a CITES permit for your bear before he ships it down to you. This would also apply to any tanned bear hides or mounted trophies you may acquire in Canada and wish to take home.......you will need a CITES permit and an export permit from the province in which you acquired them.
This exemption only applies to black bear...........not any of the other big game species listed in CITES, such as grizzly, wolf, lynx, etc..........they still require a regular CITES permit to export.
(One other exception..........this exemption also applies for sandhill crane taken in Manitoba while on a bird hunt.)
So sorry..........I was addressing the CITES issue. Yes you also need the US import form as well, but it applies to all big game animals you take back to the US, not just black bear and it is no big deal to do. If an outfitter is worth his salt he will have those on hand for you to fill out so that you have them when you cross the border.
No Biggie makwa--Just have found that having all my forms etc filled out correstly helps a lot at border- both ways- customs on both sides get a lot of hunting traffic where I cross-Mostly at Pembina, ND/Emerson, MB and some times they get a bit harried and cross threaded- being an old fart ,they must figure i'm not a terrorist nor gun runnere- i also am in their records for 3-4 crossings each year since the late 60's-I usually can get through in under 5 min having all forms done in advance and ,for once, not ever being a smart ass- also answer questiond asked=- do not go into details not asked- just the facts mam.
I'll be making 3-4 rnd trips this year and hopefully all will go as easy as in past.
When I am guiding I always have the forms for the hunters and help them fill them out before they leave so that I know they are ready for customs. When I book hunters I send them a copy of the hunting regulations of the province/territory they are going to be hunting in so that they can bone up on the local regulations. I send them the firearms forms if they are not going to do it on line.
I am like you in that when I am crossing the border I like to have all of my ducks in a row so that things run as smoothly as possible. While that usually works, you can occasionally run into a customs officer....going in either direction......that either doesn't like hunters, his wife kicked him out of bed, or the morning donuts were stale, and decides to make your crossing a memorable experience. Even with these individuals, if your paperwork is in order, there is little they can do to you other than be annoying and inconvenience you.
I actually have less and less use for forums as time goes by and I find myself posting less and less. I just slid on to this forum to look for some info and I quickly scanned the topics, noticed the posts on the CITES/black bear issue I thought I would try and clear it up.
Makwa, thank you. A clear and consise explanation of a sometimes confusing topic. Too bad each province sometimes have different provincial requirements on game moving across the border. Like you, I make sure all my paper work is in order before they hit the border. All my hunters are saying its now harder to get back into the States than it is coming here. And the one other problem we'll never solve is the customs at the border don't always know the regs themselves.
Makwa--I see you hunt near Riding Mtn--I know area- in the 70's I was married to a lady from Oak Lake MB--used to hunt deer etc before a guide was needed--fished a lot at Flin Flon, Cranberry Portage and Cormorant & Clearwater lakes.
I am going to hunt bear this spring at Winnipegosis.
Widux.............well you are familiar with the country then. Our ranch is next to the national park so we have bear, deer, elk and moose on the place.
In most years I do guide locally but I also usually guide in northrn Manitoba as well as a couple of other provinces or territories as well. Too much running aorund though and I am trying to stay close to home more as I would like more time to enjoy being at home on our ranch.............doing some hunting for myself for a change and messing around with our horses.
Good luck on your bear hunt. I am starting to bait as we speak.
sawbill................you are so right about the provinces. I wish they would get their act together with regards to bear parts. In BC you cannot even possess the gall bladder or baculum, in Alberta you can keep the baculum and you can keep the gall bladder for personal use, in Manitoba you can keep the baculum but can't possess the gall bladder. It is no wonder hunters don't know what the hell is expected of them.
There it sits. Alone and forgotten in a desk drawer or maybe in the bottom of your hunting pack. The lowly compass. Primarily initially replaced by the hand held GPS and now even by the new “smart” cell phones that include GPS, electronic compass – even real time imaging on aerial maps! Once the friend of every hunter and now the companion of few. It is not glamorous or glitzy, that is for sure… no bells and no whistles. Aaaaah, but let’s not rush to forget our...