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Big Black Bear Bagged in the Poconos

COOLBAUGH TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Hunting season for bear is underway and one hunter’s quest for a black bear in the Poconos turned up a monster.

Game wardens in the Poconos say the opening day of bear season on Saturday turned up a pretty standard harvest with about 40 bears checked in here at the station in Tobyhanna.

One number on the bear chart is quite impressive — a bear weighed in at 689 pounds after gutting. Game wardens estimate its live weight at 813 pounds. It’s the biggest bear so far this season in Pennsylvania.

“It was so large that as we lifted the bear up off the truck, our scale didn’t go high enough. We needed to pull him out, let the bear drop and then load him back up on a tractor, lift him with the bucket to get him back in the truck and get the guy on his way,” said Game Warden Randy Gildea.

“Everybody would, you know, love to get a world-class bear like that for themselves. A black bear like that in Pennsylvania? You be hard-pressed to see a bear like that anywhere in the world,” said Tyler Wilson, Pennsylvania Game Commission.

“That’s good. I’ve had a 579-pound bear so it’s good to see them getting mature bear. It means they’re shooting mature bears,” said hunter Michael Judge.

The big bear was taken in the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area. Game wardens say the hunter was from Bucks County.

Hunters who came to the check station after the massive bear was recorded were impressed.

“It does make them excited to see a number like that because it makes them realize they have an opportunity to go out and get that for themselves,” Wilson said.

“I think bear populations are high throughout the state specifically in the northeast region, so hunters should still have an opportunity to harvest bears,” Gildea said.

That big black bear did not break a state record. The biggest black bear ever recorded was an estimated 879 pounds alive. Hunters still have two more days to try to get a larger black bear.

Source: wnep.com

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