LOU Magazine

LOU Magazine

Hunting & Fishing articles about waters in MD, PA, DC, DE and VA plus bonus features–this country and others. Ken Penrod-your host.

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4 weeks ago

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1 month ago

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Pennsylvania bear harvest nears 3,000 for 2019 after firearms opener
THE PATRIOT-NEWS
Sun., November 24, 2019 8:20 p.m.
1986582_web1_gtr-bear-120218
Hunters killed 986 black bears on Saturday, the first day of the 4-day firearms hunting season for bear across Pennsylvania.


Hunters killed 986 black bears on Saturday, the first day of the 4-day firearms hunting season for bear across Pennsylvania.

Hunters killed 1,241 bears on the first day of last year’s firearms season, which eventually contributed to a total bear harvest for 2018 of 3,153 bears, which was the 11th top bear harvest in state history. The top year was 2011, when 4,350 bears were harvested.

But in new early hunting seasons this year — an October 19-26 muzzleloader season, an October 24-26 season for junior and senior hunters, and October 28-November 9 archery season — hunters had already harvested 1,871 bears.

That means the total bear kill after the first day of the firearms season this year stands at 2,857.

The largest bear killed to date this year are one weighing 813 pounds taken in Monroe County in the firearms season; 747 pounds, Luzerne County, firearms season; 631 pounds, Clarion County, non-archery early seasons; 630 pounds, Schuylkill County, archery season; 623 pounds, Clinton County, firearms season; 620 pounds, Centre County, firearms season; 610 pounds, Monroe County, non-archery early seasons; 610 pounds, Susquehanna County, archery season; 604 pounds, Clinton County, firearms season; 601 pounds, Northampton County, non-archery early seasons.

The top harvest counties this year so far are Clinton, 210 bears harvested; Lycoming, 185; Tioga, 182; Potter, 130; Luzerne, 102; Pike, 98; Warren, 95; McKean, 87; Elk, 86; and Monroe, 86.

With those new early season added in 2019, many observers are wondering if a harvest record could be set this year, when hunters have double the number of statewide bear-hunting days available to them.

The firearms season continues through sunset Wednesday, and 2 extended bear seasons of varying lengths in selected wildlife management units will begin Saturday, which is also the first day of the firearms hunting season for deer.

The state has maintained a substantial bear population of about 20,000 the past 4 years, despite hunters removing more than 17,000 bears from the statewide population over the past 5 years.

“It’s hard for some to imagine Pennsylvania has such a vibrant black bear population,” noted Matt Lovallo, the Game Commission’s Game Mammals Section Supervisor. “But bears are incredibly adaptable. They can fit in almost anywhere that offers them cover and reliable food sources. It’s why bears are found in more places in Pennsylvania than any time in the Game Commission’s existence.”

Last year, bears were taken in 60 of 67 counties. Hunters have connected with bruins in 56 counties to date this year.
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Pennsylvania bear harvest nears 3,000 for 2019 after firearms opener
THE PATRIOT-NEWS 
Sun., November 24, 2019 8:20 p.m.
1986582_web1_gtr-bear-120218
Hunters killed 986 black bears on Saturday, the first day of the 4-day firearms hunting season for bear across Pennsylvania.

 
Hunters killed 986 black bears on Saturday, the first day of the 4-day firearms hunting season for bear across Pennsylvania.

Hunters killed 1,241 bears on the first day of last year’s firearms season, which eventually contributed to a total bear harvest for 2018 of 3,153 bears, which was the 11th top bear harvest in state history. The top year was 2011, when 4,350 bears were harvested.

But in new early hunting seasons this year — an October 19-26 muzzleloader season, an October 24-26 season for junior and senior hunters, and October 28-November 9 archery season — hunters had already harvested 1,871 bears.

That means the total bear kill after the first day of the firearms season this year stands at 2,857.

The largest bear killed to date this year are one weighing 813 pounds taken in Monroe County in the firearms season; 747 pounds, Luzerne County, firearms season; 631 pounds, Clarion County, non-archery early seasons; 630 pounds, Schuylkill County, archery season; 623 pounds, Clinton County, firearms season; 620 pounds, Centre County, firearms season; 610 pounds, Monroe County, non-archery early seasons; 610 pounds, Susquehanna County, archery season; 604 pounds, Clinton County, firearms season; 601 pounds, Northampton County, non-archery early seasons.

The top harvest counties this year so far are Clinton, 210 bears harvested; Lycoming, 185; Tioga, 182; Potter, 130; Luzerne, 102; Pike, 98; Warren, 95; McKean, 87; Elk, 86; and Monroe, 86.

With those new early season added in 2019, many observers are wondering if a harvest record could be set this year, when hunters have double the number of statewide bear-hunting days available to them.

The firearms season continues through sunset Wednesday, and 2 extended bear seasons of varying lengths in selected wildlife management units will begin Saturday, which is also the first day of the firearms hunting season for deer.

The state has maintained a substantial bear population of about 20,000 the past 4 years, despite hunters removing more than 17,000 bears from the statewide population over the past 5 years.

“It’s hard for some to imagine Pennsylvania has such a vibrant black bear population,” noted Matt Lovallo, the Game Commission’s Game Mammals Section Supervisor. “But bears are incredibly adaptable. They can fit in almost anywhere that offers them cover and reliable food sources. It’s why bears are found in more places in Pennsylvania than any time in the Game Commission’s existence.”

Last year, bears were taken in 60 of 67 counties. Hunters have connected with bruins in 56 counties to date this year.

1 month ago

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1 month ago

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PUBLIC NOTICE
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Fishing and Boating Services
Closure of Upper Chesapeake Bay to Oyster Harvest— Effective 12/16/2019

WHAT THIS NOTICE DOES

The Secretary of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources announces that except as
provided in the public notices described below, the Chesapeake Bay and its tidal tributaries north
of the northernmost spans of the Gov. William Preston Lane, Jr. Memorial and the R. Clayton
Mitchell, Jr. (Kent Narrows) bridges are closed to all oyster harvest. This notice supersedes all
notices effective prior to December 16, 2019 affecting oyster harvest areas north of the
northernmost spans of the Gov. William Preston Lane, Jr. Memorial and the R. Clayton Mitchell,
Jr. (Kent Narrows) bridges.

EXCEPTIONS TO CLOSED AREA

The areas described in the notices listed below are exceptions to the closed area. Details of the
openings are in each notice.

Partial Opening of Swan Point Oyster Bar (Kent County) — Effective 11/25/2019
Partial Opening of Hells Delight Oyster Bar (Queen Anne’s County) — Effective 12/16/2019
Partial Opening of Piney Point Oyster Bar (Queen Anne’s County) — Effective 12/16/2019
Partial Opening of Durdin Oyster Bar (Kent County) — Effective 1/6/2020
PURPOSE OF THIS CLOSURE

This closure is necessary due to low abundance of oysters, low natural spat set, and potential
impacts of persistently low salinity levels. Specific sites previously planted by county oyster
committees may be opened in a future notice.

WHO THIS NOTICE AFFECTS

This closure applies to all individuals who catch oysters recreationally or commercially.

EFFECTIVE DATE

The closure is effective at 12:01 a.m. December 16, 2019. The area is closed until further notice.
A new notice will be issued when the area or any previously planted portion of the area is reopened to harvest.

AUTHORITY

Code of Maryland Regulations 08.02.04.11G

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Fishing and Boating Services at 410-260-8302

Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio
Secretary of Natural Resources
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PUBLIC NOTICE
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Fishing and Boating Services
Closure of Upper Chesapeake Bay to Oyster Harvest— Effective 12/16/2019

WHAT THIS NOTICE DOES

The Secretary of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources announces that except as
provided in the public notices described below, the Chesapeake Bay and its tidal tributaries north
of the northernmost spans of the Gov. William Preston Lane, Jr. Memorial and the R. Clayton
Mitchell, Jr. (Kent Narrows) bridges are closed to all oyster harvest. This notice supersedes all
notices effective prior to December 16, 2019 affecting oyster harvest areas north of the
northernmost spans of the Gov. William Preston Lane, Jr. Memorial and the R. Clayton Mitchell,
Jr. (Kent Narrows) bridges.

EXCEPTIONS TO CLOSED AREA

The areas described in the notices listed below are exceptions to the closed area. Details of the
openings are in each notice.

Partial Opening of Swan Point Oyster Bar (Kent County) — Effective 11/25/2019
Partial Opening of Hells Delight Oyster Bar (Queen Anne’s County) — Effective 12/16/2019       
Partial Opening of Piney Point Oyster Bar (Queen Anne’s County) — Effective 12/16/2019
Partial Opening of Durdin Oyster Bar (Kent County) — Effective 1/6/2020
PURPOSE OF THIS CLOSURE

This closure is necessary due to low abundance of oysters, low natural spat set, and potential
impacts of persistently low salinity levels. Specific sites previously planted by county oyster
committees may be opened in a future notice.

WHO THIS NOTICE AFFECTS

This closure applies to all individuals who catch oysters recreationally or commercially.

EFFECTIVE DATE

The closure is effective at 12:01 a.m. December 16, 2019. The area is closed until further notice.
A new notice will be issued when the area or any previously planted portion of the area is reopened to harvest.

AUTHORITY

Code of Maryland Regulations 08.02.04.11G

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Fishing and Boating Services at 410-260-8302

Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio
Secretary of Natural Resources

2 months ago

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3 months ago

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Stephen Gutowski - OCTOBER 30, 2019 5:30 PM
A Pennsylvania judge ruled on Tuesday that Pittsburgh's recently passed gun-control measures violate state law.

In his ruling, Allegheny County judge Joseph M. James said the city's ordinances were in plain opposition to a state preemption law which prohibits localities from passing their own gun laws.

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"The Uniform Firearms Act is a comprehensive statute that evidences an intent by the Legislature to preempt the entire field of firearms and ammunition across the state of Pennsylvania," Judge James wrote.

The Pittsburgh ordinances restricted the use of certain rifles, like the AR-15, within city limits, banned the use of magazines which hold more than 10 rounds, and creates a process to confiscate firearms from those accused of being a threat to themselves or others. They were passed in the wake of the mass shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue last year, which took the lives of 11 people.

The gun-control ordinances faced immediate opposition from gun-rights activists, who launched several lawsuits. A suit filed by Pennsylvania-based Firearm Owners Against Crime, three Pennsylvania residents, the Firearm Policy Coalition, and the Firearm Policy Foundation led to the judge's decision. The groups applauded James's ruling.

"I am delighted that Judge James' decision today appropriately struck down the City of Pittsburgh's unlawful firearm ordinances and signage," plaintiffs' attorney Joshua Prince said in a statement. "The City's gun control sought to eviscerate the inviolate right of the residents of the Commonwealth to keep and bear arms and ensnare law-abiding citizens through a patchwork of laws. Today, Judge James made clear that Mayor Peduto and the Pittsburgh City Council are neither above the law nor a special class of citizens that may violate the law with impunity."

The National Rifle Association called the decision a "great day for law-abiding Pennsylvania gun owners."

"This is a huge victory for law-abiding gun owners and everyone who values freedom in the Keystone state," Jason Ouimet, executive director of the group's Institute for Legislative Action, said in a statement. He said the case underscores the "need for judges who will faithfully interpret the law in defense of their rights and liberties."

The Firearms Policy Coalition said the state law prohibiting local gun ordinances is important because it keeps residents from having to navigate dozens of different firearms laws depending on what part of the state they visit.

"Pennsylvania's preemption statute serves an important purpose, to ensure that Pennsylvanians are not subjected to a patchwork of illogical and inconsistent rules and regulations pertaining to the firearms they chose to employ," Adam Kraut, the group's director of legal strategy, said.

Prince said the city should face consequences for its decision to flaunt state law.

"We look forward to Judge James issuing a decision on Allegheny County Sportsmen's League's contempt petition against the City of Pittsburgh and District Attorney Zappala filing criminal charges against Mayor Peduto and the City Council Members who enacted these illegal ordinances," he said.

Prior to the passage of the ordinances, Allegheny County DA Stephen Zappala warned the city council and mayor that they could face criminal complaints if they voted to pass measures that violate state law. However, after the ordinances passed, he refused to accept complaints filed by local residents before the measures were enforced.

Despite the possibility of legal action should the measures ever go into effect, Mayor Bill Peduto (D.) said the city would appeal the decision.

"The city and its outside legal counsel have always expected this would be a long legal fight, and will continue to fight for the right to take common sense steps to prevent future gun violence," Tim McNulty, a spokesperson for the mayor, told WTAE. "We will appeal."

Pittsburgh was defended in part by Everytown Law, an arm of the gun-control group Everytown for Gun Safety. The group also helped represent the cities of Edmonds, Wash., and Missoula, Mont., in similar cases attempting to defy state preemption laws. Those cities were also dealt legal defeats in the last two weeks.
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