Blue Mountains Spring Black Bear App Due March 9th

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Hunters who want a chance to be drawn for one of 105 permits for the 2003 Blue Mountains spring black bear hunt must submit an application before midnight on March 9, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) announced.

The special permit season, which will run April 15 to May 31, is the only bear hunting opportunity outside of the regular fall bear hunting season, said Donny Martorello, WDFW carnivore, furbearer and special species manager.

The hunt will occur in seven game management units in the Blue Mountains of southeast Washington. Thirty permits will be issued for the Wenaha Unit; 15 each for the Blue Creek, Dayton, Mountain View, and Lick Creek units; 10 permits for the Tucannon Unit; and 5 for the Grande Ronde Unit. Hunters can use any legal weapon, including modern firearm, archery or muzzleloader. Bait or hounds cannot be used to hunt black bears in Washington state.

Hunting licenses, bear transport tags and spring bear applications can be purchased at any hunting license vendor in the state, online at www.fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov, or by calling toll-free 1-866-246-9453. Hunters must submit their spring bear applications via the web site or by calling toll-free 1-877-945-3492. Hunters are reminded that the applications require the use of the correct hunt choice number. Hunt choice numbers can be found on page 24 of WDFW's 2002 Big Game Hunting Seasons and Rules pamphlet.

Permit winners will be notified by March 24 by mail.

A bear-hunting license for Washington residents is $21.90 and a special permit application is $5. For non-residents, the license is $219 and the special permit application is $50.