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Thread: More Bears

  1. #1

    Default More Bears

    Quick question I wanted to pose to everyone here after all this bear talk.

    Hypothetically, if you shot a bear in self defense and wounded it, are you ethically obligated to track it down and kill it?

    More simply, are the ethical consideration different for self defense and hunting?

  2. #2

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    personally, I would track it down and make sure it was dead. I wouldn't want a pissed off bear running around and possible hurt or kill someone else....then again, I don't know if I would be tracking down a bear that just tried to eat me either. That is a real loaded question the more I think about it. I think ethically you would be obligated to make sure the bear didn't suffer anymore than it had to.

  3. #3
    Member Mort's Avatar
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    Since the law requires you to skin the bear and recover the pelt/claws/skull (after a DLP), my GUESS would be you have a legal obligation to try to track it and determine its demise. But that's just an opinion.

    As for ethics, I think at some point you should try to track and kill it. You would probably be justified in taking time to get help, perhaps more firepower. I also think the aspect of trying to ensure a wounded bear doesn't encounter another unsuspecting (and likely unarmed/unprepared) person. This would be much more a factor if the DLP encounter occurred in the vicinity of recreational activities like fishing, hiking, etc.

    Just opinions...

    Chris

  4. #4

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    If a bear just tried to kill me and I wounded it in self defense I MIGHT try to track it if it was out in the open. If it sprinted into thick brush I probably would not follow. I would report the incident.

    My first obligation is to come home to my two little girls and wife. I won't be seeking out a wounded bear with my 500.

  5. #5
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    This ole boy agrees with AKGunner:

    The responsible thing to do is to finish it off, but how, or how urgently, you make that happen would, of course, depend on the circumstances. At the least, you could report it, and warn people.

    I reckon it’s a no-brainer.

    If you can legally kill a bear anyway, you wouldn’t have to worry about justifying the DLP thing. WHEW!

    (Whatever, you do, don’t tell them the bear woofed at you.)

    It wouldn’t be easy to pass yourself off as an ethical hunter, having wounded a bear, but it beats a prosecution, if you have to fight the DLP.

    I do not think it is a fair Law that "requires you to skin the bear and recover the pelt/claws/skull (after a DLP" You should be required to report it only, and soon enough for zee authorities to salvage it. What??, Only those capable of skinning a bear can legally defend themselves from a bear? REE'DIK'LUS.

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  6. #6
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    Talking This thing is greaseeeeey...

    I think the regulation is that if and when and after a DLP encounter you are required to notify the troopers. They will then go out and fetch it for you to skin. What if i'm not able to skin this big greasy furry think? What if it is too ichy and yucky and I get sick, do I still have to skin it? If I'm not a trained bear skinner, must I hold my fire and allow said bruin to devour my bones. Darn if I had just gone to that bear skinning class!
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  7. #7

    Default Obligated?

    I have to say if you are a committed hunter and/or outdoors person, then that question should never have to be asked. Of course you should find some way to locate and make sure the bear is finished or finish it off. If you are not capable of doing it yourself, being alone and improperly armed for the area you are in, it would be better to get help. As for skinning out the bear, it isn't required to be a professional. If you are inexperienced enough to not have a clue on such things, whether you are hunting or just hiking in an area that has bruins around, perhaps some research and study might come in handy. To ask if it is ethical to leave a wounded, dangerous animal to drift around in pain and to potentially hurt or kill other people is a sign that perhaps you shouldn't be out there alone. I homesteaded for years and was pretty much alone when I explored my living area or hunted, but I have always been comfortable doing so and am interested in enough that I have a pretty good concept of what I should know to survive and function properly. Alaska is one place where you definitely are better off with someone to be with you. Enough of my 2 cents.

  8. #8

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    I think it depends on the situation. If I or a friend got mauled but I managed to shoot the bear & make it run, the first priority is getting medical attention. If the victim lives, I'd be happy to go to court and settle whatever dispute the law may have with the action of saving a life. If the victim dies from injuries and the law makes a fuss about the bear carcass, I'd blast it all over the news about how my friend got mauled to death and the gov't is petty enough to fine me for trying to save their life. If I die, then I won't care.

    If I've just shot a charging bear but have nothing to show for it but a smoking gun and the jitters, it still depends. I don't normally carry hunting paraphernalia with me, and I don't want to think "oh gee I'd better go see if my little swiss army knife is enough to skin & behead that huge dead grizzly". In that case I'd probably wait a while for it to die & for my nerves to settle, then go follow the blood to make sure it's dead. I don't like shooting animals unless they're going to be on the menu. After that I'd go home, tell my wife about it, and trust her to keep mum.

    If somebody saw it happen and/or I have the goods to clean an animal, darn tootin' I'm going to track it and take its fur, etc. I think it's weird that it's Alaskan law to do that; here in Washington I think we're supposed to report the incident, but we're absolutely forbidden to take any part of the animal. I wonder if the Alaska version was written up by someone who wanted to get away with hunting out of season. I wonder who the fur & stuff go to.
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  10. #10
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    Default Depends..

    I would say it depends on if tracking the animal puts you in harms way. I would not go into the alders looking for a wounded bear. ADFG can kiss my.... With that being said, we do have an obligation to put it down. A wounded bear is very dangerous as others here have mentioned. Ideally, you would skin the bear and take the skull/hide out and report to ADFG. Would I risk lowering my position on the food chain to do it. No.
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    Default From what I have read

    The law requires you to track and kill a bear that you have injured. There were several reasons why they ask that this be done. First, an injured bear is more dangerous to anybody that encounters it. Secondly and more obviously, the required skining and reporting of the kill to the DFG. I was just reading some updated information on this topic a couple weeks back.

    Regards...

  12. #12
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    Default Law?

    "The law requires you to track"

    If someone could find this law, I would love to read about it. Turning in the hide/skull of a bear you killed in self defense is one thing. Tracking a dangerous and wounded animal into the alders is another. I am not sure that the law obligates you to track a wounded animal that is capable of killing you. Especially not right after it attacked you. Otherwise, why would you have shot it in the first place? I will take common sense over law anyday. If anyone can show where it is "law" to track the bear, post it here so I can find out how much the fine will be.
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

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    Default Law/Regulation

    This one is intended to prevent a camper, hiker or fisherman from encountering a bear that has been wounded. It stated that every attempt be made to track and mortally wound any bear that has been wounded. It really encompasses any dangerous animal but, this section was about bears wounded in defense of life or property.


    "You are responsible for tracking and recovering every animal that you hit. Even if the animal runs at the shot you must assume that your bullet or arrow hit the animal."

    http://wildlife.alaska.gov/index.cfm...alaska.wounded

    I personally spend a lot of time out in the wilderness with my wife and young son and I don't want to run into a bear that has been wounded and nobody took the time to ensure that the bear is dead. I will eventually find the regulation that specifically covered this topic and I will post it then.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    I think the regulation is that if and when and after a DLP encounter you are required to notify the troopers. They will then go out and fetch it for you to skin. What if i'm not able to skin this big greasy furry think? What if it is too ichy and yucky and I get sick, do I still have to skin it? If I'm not a trained bear skinner, must I hold my fire and allow said bruin to devour my bones. Darn if I had just gone to that bear skinning class!
    I know that if you commit a poaching crime that they charge you not only for committing the crime (a fee that is) but also for gutting/skinning/butchering the game so they can send it off to some deserving penitentiary inmates somewhere. I wonder if you make the trooper (or someone they hire) recover the animal, say ...if you are a non-hunter who owns a gun for protection only, that they'd charge you for the privilege? Good question...

    bd

  15. #15

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    I think that was written in reference to hunting and not DLP.

    Now that I've uncorked the bee's nest I'll chime in.

    I think it's highly dependent on the situation as many others here have pointed out. If I could at all safely put the animal down I would. I doubt that the state would prosecute if they didn't immediately try to recover if the situation were particularly dangerous or the situation prevented it for whatever reason.

    In my opinion, from strictly a ethical standpoint in the wilderness we have no obligation to track that bear, if we were not engaged in hunting. Tracking wounded animals is a very legitimate game management policy. If that animal goes off and dies and the hunter just shoots another that is just wasting resources that someone else could have and you should have utilized. This is a very different situation than self defense.

    If you shoot something in self defense it's not an issue of game management. It's life and death. If a moose injures a wolf that is trying to take it down, that moose has no obligation to go finish it off and most likely won't. This is a situation very analogous to ours. We aren't the apex predator in the woods. We are outclassed in about every way other than our brains and opposable thumbs. In a self defense situation with a bear we are in close enough proximity that our guns render us little aid to eliminate the possibility of close contact with a bear. This is a potentially deadly situation that we never wanted to be in, tried to avoid and we were forced to take action.

    In hunting a bear you are seeking out a confrontation of sorts with the bear. Your intent is to kill the bear. It is still a game management issue. I think the recovery laws were written to prevent unscrupulous hunters from taking advantage of the situation and keeping the hide or selling it. These laws were more written to keep trophy hunters honest. I don't see the state game laws intervening in any situation on purely moral grounds. They are protecting the interests of the state. If you injure a bear in the process of hunting it you are ethically obligated to recover it.

    None of this prevents anyone from tracking and killing an animal they wounded in self defense. I think it is a respectable thing to do but I would not look down on someone who didn't make an effort to finish an animal who was injured and went into heavy cover (what they do when injured) and considered dangerous. One life has already been taken. What purpose would be served by more being killed?

    This whole situation takes on a different light when the injured bear is in a heavily used area. I think there is some mitigation required of people who injure a bear in this situation. AT LEAST they must inform the authorities, warn people in the general vicinity and try to ensure that others are not injured.

    My opinion for what it's worth.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TALLONE6FOOT9 View Post
    This one is intended to prevent a camper, hiker or fisherman from encountering a bear that has been wounded. It stated that every attempt be made to track and mortally wound any bear that has been wounded. It really encompasses any dangerous animal but, this section was about bears wounded in defense of life or property.


    "You are responsible for tracking and recovering every animal that you hit. Even if the animal runs at the shot you must assume that your bullet or arrow hit the animal."

    http://wildlife.alaska.gov/index.cfm...alaska.wounded

    I personally spend a lot of time out in the wilderness with my wife and young son and I don't want to run into a bear that has been wounded and nobody took the time to ensure that the bear is dead. I will eventually find the regulation that specifically covered this topic and I will post it then.
    THAT statement is in the HUNTING regulations ...Sure it makes sense to do so if it doesn't, as someone else put it, "lower you on the food chain." But what if you are a non-hunter who does carry a firearm for protection? He/she is not "hunting" in that case and therefore the hunting regulations don't seem to apply ...no? I wonder what the law is for non-hunting kills for DLP is? I'm certain that it includes an immediate reporting to the authorities, but I'm not certain it includes tracking/killing for sure. Hunting regulations assume you are properly armed and know what to do ...other regulations cannot make that assumption. I would think that killing a bear for protection (while not hunting) is no different than wounding one by accidentally hitting it with a car or something similar... Although it might be fun to chase the bear down in a gnarly 4x4 to finish it off

    Brian

  17. #17
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    Default Interesting...

    This has turned into an interesting topic. I agree that we have a responsibility to put down a wounded bear when feasible. I would hate for my wounded bear to run across the guy that posted above while out fishing with his kids for the afternoon. But I would not expect anyone to put their life in further danger by chasing the bear that just attacked them into the brush. Lots of variables here and I suspect that is why there is no law on it. Every situation is different. The laws that a hunter obeys are certainly different than a person that encounters a bear in a self defense situation. The hunter is stalking the bear. Looking for a nice rug if you will. The float fisherman or hiker was the one that was stalked in the self defense shooting. In the criminal courts the same difference would be between murder and a self defense shooting. No one would dare try to say that the same laws apply to murder and self defense. Is the difference in shooting a bear for sport and defending ones life from imminent attack not the same?
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  18. #18
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    Default DLP, not Hunting..

    This is how the regulation is explained on the ADF&G Website, and the Link to the particular page.

    “Bears killed in defense of life or property belong to the state. If you kill a bear you must remove the hide. If it is a brown bear you must also salvage the skull. You must give both the hide, with claws attached, and the skull to ADF&G. You must also notify your local ADF&G Wildlife Conservation office or Alaska State Troopers Bureau of Wildlife enforcement immediately. You are required to fill out and submit a questionnaire concerning the circumstances within 15 days.”

    http://www.wc.adfg.state.ak.us/index...=bears.problem

    Note, it is "MUST", "MUST" "SALVAGE" "CLAWS ATTACHED" "REQUIRED", and like verbiage.

    It clearly states what is required. I don't know how they handle it in cases where the KILLER, is unable to skin a bear, but it's probably just as unfair, and unreasonable.

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  19. #19
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Default Good ...

    "Bears killed in defense of life or property belong to the state"

    That is the very fabric of the problem. IF the bear is killed, certain laws apply. No problem. I will do my part. But what about a shot/wounded bear that is not killed. Now what? I know what I would do.
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  20. #20

    Default Laws and ethics......

    If I wound a bear I am going to go find it and kill it. I will give the details to the authorities as soon as I can.

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