Amend Grizzly bear Range of Authorization for Limited Entry Hunting Zone 7-52

Proposal Number: 
2147
Status: 
Proposed
Region: 
Region 7B - Peace
Regulation Type: 
Limited Entry Hunting
Species: 
Grizzly Bear
Closing Date: 
Jan 31, 2016
Decision Statement: 

Pending

Current Regulations: 

The “Range of Authorizations” is a legislated minimum and maximum number of authorizations that may be provided for a specific Limited Entry Hunt. The Director of the Fish and Wildlife Branch is the law maker for determining the number of LEH authorizations available for each LEH hunt in the province and the final number must fall within the Range of Authorizations.

The current Range of Authorization (ROA) for grizzly bear in 7-52 is set at 1–50 for the spring and fall seasons.  The ROA for grizzly bear in MU 7-52 is not listed in the synopsis; however, the Limited Entry Hunting Regulation Synopsis 2015-2016 lists the following authorizations:

3209 Peace River 7-52 Apr 15-June 15 Adult only 50 0.4:1

3082 Peace River 7-52 Aug 15-Oct 31 Adult only 50 2.4:1

Proposed Regulations: 

A proposal to amend the Grizzly bear range of authorization for Limited Entry Hunting Zone 7-52. Current range of authorization is set at 1-50, and current population estimates suggest that MU 7-52 could sustain an increase in Limited Entry Hunting permits for resident hunters without posing any conservation concern.

Forest Lands and Natural Resource Operations are proposing to increase the ROA to 1–150 for the spring and fall grizzly hunts in MU 7-52.  This would allow for a potential increase in the number of authorizations issues, particularly for the fall hunt.

XXXX Peace River 7-52 Apr 15-June 15 Adult only 100 0.4:1

XXXX Peace River 7-52 Aug 15-Oct 31 Adult only 100 2.4:1

Rationale: 

The intention of this proposal is to amend the Grizzly bear range of authorization for Limited Entry Hunting Zone 7-52. Current range of authorization is set at 1-50, and current population estimates suggest that MU 7-52 could sustain an increase in Limited Entry Hunting permits for resident hunters without posing any conservation concern.

Currently in MU 7-52, the spring and fall Range of Authorization is set at 1–50.  The number of authorizations allocated to resident hunters through Limited Entry Hunting (LEH) is currently set at the maximum of 50 for both spring and fall.  MU 7-52 is the second largest MU in the Peace region, and has had an average of four grizzly bears harvested by resident hunters and four harvested by non-resident hunters annually (average annual harvest from 2000–2013).  MU 7-52 has the highest grizzly bear population estimate of all MUs within the Peace region.

In MU 7-52, the current population estimate for grizzly bear is 459 with an annual allowable mortality of 26.  The annual harvest is currently well below the maximum allowable mortality (avg. of 8 bears harvested by licensed hunters annually).  Thus, MU 7-52 could sustain a potential increase in LEH permits for resident hunters without posing any conservation concern.  Currently, the fall LEH authorizations are over-prescribed, suggesting that LEH authorizations could be increased to meet the demand of resident hunters without resulting in an over-harvest of bears.

This proposal would result in the ability for the regional manager to increase the LEH authorizations permitted in future years, up to a maximum of 150 permits.  MU 7-52 is remote with limited hunter access, and most grizzly bear hunting by residents occurs opportunistically while hunting other big-game species (i.e., ungulates).  

Additional Information: