It just got easier to hunt for bear in Wisconsin, after Governor Walker signed legislation Friday afternoon that eases hunting regulations. The measure lets a Class B bear license holder pursue, shoot and kill a bear that was shot, but not killed, by a Class A license holder.
The Class B license holder has to be in the same hunting party, and the bear can only be killed if it is necessary to protect others in the hunting party or the safety of the public.
State Senator Terry Moulton (R-Chippewa Falls), the sponsor of the bill, says the change will help get younger hunters involved in the sport and also prevent older hunters from fleeing to other states. He says the changes in the bill help to roll back some of the over-regulation that Wisconsin has become notorious for.
Under the bill, there would be one free hunting weekend in August. Anyone 16 or younger would be allowed to hunt under a Class B license without actually needing the license. And the measure allows bear dog training on free-roaming wild bears in the same season when hunting bears with dogs is allowed.
The state would lose about $4,900 in revenues from sales of licenses to anyone 12 to 15-years-old. The DNR thinks it would be able to absorb the loss in its budget the increased costs of enforcing more trespassing and illegal shooting complaints.
Matt Lehman, WSAU