Bear Hunt Application Deadline Approaching

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The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will accept applications for the 2006 Minnesota black bear hunting season through May 5. This year, 14,850 licenses will be available in 11 permit areas in northern and central Minnesota. The season will run from Sept. 1 through Oct. 15.

Applications can be made through the Electronic Licensing System agents throughout the state, and the DNR License Center at 500 Lafayette Road in St. Paul. Applications can also be made by calling 1-888-MNLICEN (665-4236) or online at www.dnr.state.mn.us.

Licenses for the no-quota area, which is the area outside of the 11 permit areas, can be purchased directly at any agent beginning July 1. No previous application is necessary to buy a no-quota area license.

In 2005, there were 16,153 applicants for the available 15,950 permit area licenses. Seven of the 11 permit areas were under-subscribed. Hunters harvested a total of 3,340 bears - 2,759 in the permit areas and 581 in the no-quota area. Bear licenses cost $39 for residents and $196 for nonresidents.

The bag limit will remain at two bears in the no-quota area, and one bear in all-quota permit areas.