Notebook: Final bear harvest figures in
Hunters killed 2,972 black bears during the 2004 seasons, according to final figures released by the Pennsylvania Game Commission.
That total ranks the harvest as the fourth largest in state history.
Still, indications are that the bear population remains good across the state, said commission executive director Vern Ross. While the state's six largest bear harvests have occurred in the last seven years -- only 1999 was a lean year, with just 1,740 animals taken -- the population is estimated to exceed 15,000 bears.
Hunters killed 2,425 of last year's bears during the traditional, three-day statewide season. They took another 547 during the extended season held in parts of northwestern and northcentral Pennsylvania.
Lycoming County led the state with a bear harvest of 244, followed by Clinton, 218; Pike, 155; Luzerne 138; Wayne, 135; Tioga, 119; and McKean, 103.
In the southwest, Fayette County was the bear harvest leader with 57. It was followed by Indiana, 53; Somerset, 51; Westmoreland, 44; Armstrong, 35; and Cambria, 21.
A total of 56 bears weighing 500 pounds or more were taken in the harvest. The largest was an 834-pound male taken in Monroe County.
State Rep. James Casorio has pre-season trout stocking schedules for Westmoreland and surrounding counties available in his district office at 8981 Norwin Ave., Building 1, Suite 204, in North Huntingdon. For information, call 724-861-0247.
Many other legislators have similar schedules in their offices. Call their offices for details.
Local Chapter No. 1 of the National Wild Turkey Federation will not hold its regularly scheduled meeting tonight because some members are attending NWTF's national convention.
Local No. 1 will hold its next meeting at 7:30 p.m. March 17 at Hecla Sportsmen's Club.