Trap and Release Apiary-raiding Black Bears

From December 1980 to June 1988,66 nuisance black bears (Ursus americanus) were captured and released at beeyards to create an aversion to beeyards. In most instances, bear depredations at a beeyard stopped after a bear was trapped, handled and released at the site. Of 63 bears released with tags, 14% were recaptured 1-3 times after causing additional apiary damage. These repeat offenders were mostly adult males. Two bears that continued to raid apiaries after being traped 3-4 times in a year were relocated when it became apparent that these bears were not deterred by trapping. When used in conjunction with a working electric fence, trap and release may further condition bears to prevent apiary depredation.

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