Wildlife Roundup: Bears, deer, waterfowl seasons opening

Welcome to the 2013 Juneau area Wildlife Roundup. For the week of Sept. 1, calls concerning black bear activity remained about the same over the last week.

The calls came from:

• Lemon Creek

• Sunny Point

• Stephen Richards Drive

• Lena Point

Black bears continue to be active, but the number of reports is declining. Bears will continue to feed on salmon where available and forage on berries well into the fall. Biologists have documented bears in dens as early as mid-September, so it is likely some local bears will begin moving to den locations in the next few weeks.

The number of black bears in 2013 that have been captured and released in a new location remains at two. For 2013, the number of black bears humanely killed totals two, as well.

Though some bears may be headed to dens in the near future it is common to have active black bears in Juneau well into October and even November. Many bear related concerns can be addressed through the proper storage of garbage, and the removal of attractants such as fish scraps and waste, bird feeders and pet food. Chicken coops and runs, and bird feeders continue to attract bears in the Juneau area. Coops and runs should be surrounded by a working electric fence, and livestock feed should be stored in a secure, bear resistant structure. Bird feeders should not be used until later in the fall when black bear activity has significantly decreased.

Hunting seasons are opening around Alaska including the Juneau area. Buck deer season is now open, with the either sex deer season opening on Sept. 15. Black bear season opened Sept. 1, and brown bear season will start Sept. 15. The waterfowl season in Southeast starts Sept. 16, and Mendenhall Wetlands State Game Refuge waterfowl hunting permits are now available at the Douglas fish and game office and online. Don’t forget to get your 2013 hunting license and the appropriate harvest tickets, tags and permits before going into the field; good luck hunting!

For additional information and questions, please contact the Douglas Area wildlife Office at 465-4265.

• Ryan Scott is a wildlife biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. The intent of this column is to provide Juneau residents updates on wildlife activity in the Juneau area, and general interest wildlife information.

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