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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
More and more bear seem to be appearing in the 3M zone where I hunt, and I've never shot one or even seen one during the big game season. So the question came up, posed by my wife, at the dinner table the other night: "If you see one, would you shoot it?" Though I answered in the affirmative, I really wasn't sure why. I've taken plenty of deer in my time but never a bear.

So if the membership of New York Firearms would be kind enough to entertain a few noob question regarding bear hunting:

1. Is the meat as tasty as venison?

2. Can bear be butchered and processed at a typical deer butcher shop?

3. Do folks usually preserve the pelt, ala "bearskin rug"?

4. Do any of you deer hunters pass up an opportunity to shoot a bear? Why?

Is there anything else I should be asking, or some advice you'd care to share? I apologize in advance for my ignorance on this subject, but I figure it's better to be embarrassed here than to regret pulling the trigger later.
 

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The meat is dark-ER and can be very greasy but like anything else it's all how you preserve and prepare it. I have always butchered my own but I'd venture to say many butchers would not want to deal with a bear. Yes, preserve the pelt. Bears tend to stink, bad so let a pro handle the pelt until you've practiced tanning so it's not rushed or messed up. Be sure to read up on harvesting bear.... Do not harvest a sou when she's with young, be sure you will be able to actually harvest it and not just "take a shot" without knowing whose gonna butcher it, help ya drag it, etc.
 

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well answered by buell.... i cant add anything to it. Ive eaten bear once, it was the heart, and prepared by my late uncle... it was delicious, sauteed in a pan with onions, butter, etc... there are tons of bear in greene as well where I hunt, and I wouldnt take a sou, only a boar if I saw one. Id butcher it myself, and Id find a place to tan the hide, I wouldnt make a rug out of it. if it was big enough (like the 500+lber that my old man came within 35 yards of while walking the woods with only his knife) then id get a mount.
 

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As sorta said above if you shoot one worth wile remember it aint a deer getting it out will be fun so be prepared. The meat is good roasts are excellent, dress it as you would a deer (don't leave the gall bladder in the gut pile its worth a few bucks.) cool it fast the fat and heavy hide will keep the heat longer then a deer will. As for cooking treat it as you would pork bear can carry trichinosis.
 

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(don't leave the gall bladder in the gut pile its worth a few bucks.)
Really, why is that ? For scientific reasons or is there some other odd use for it ?
 

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The forest was crowded with bear hunters thus weekend. Well, relatively so. I ran into a handful on Saturday and Sunday. I've always revered bears as sort of a totem spirit guide. I kind of resemble a bear. Mostly, I have no idea how to even get started. Maybe next year.
 

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Another thing to mention pertaining to the flavor of bear is what their primary food source is/has been .... they are opportunistic .... the food source can carry over to the flavor of the meat
 

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Interesting thread. My father finished up his career in EnCon, and every year his department held a barbecue in New Paltz using some of the confiscated meat that was held for poaching and criminal cases. He particularly liked the bear, and there was a lot of it, apparently in that district there's a lot of poaching for the gall bladders or something. It's a chinese thing, they pay for it.

I've only come upon one black bear in the wild, in NH when I was in private school, it smelled like a walking outhouse. Literally the air stunk for 15 minutes after it left.
 

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And don't forget to look up when still hunting for them often they will climb a tree to get out of your way when approached rather then just run off
 

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I was camping once near blue mountain. The ranger warned me to keep all the food locked in the car at night because the park had "visitors". I thought he was talking about gypsies.
 

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Eaten bear once. Was OK but was a yearling and well stewed...
 

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I'm not a hunter so take this for what its worth, but my buddy hunts bear on his property every season. He says the Loin is really the only good meat on the Black bear up in ADK and he does take the hides. Last bear he took was taken by another bear before he claimed it. Almost nothing left of the meat or hide. Be careful out there!
 

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The only time I ate any bear was when I was a child, my uncle bagged one in the Adirondacks. Wasn't too bad from what I remember. I've been looking for one since they opened season here but haven't come across one yet. I see plenty of sign, even more this year, just no bear. Hoping this year is better.
 

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last two years of bow season i've had a black bear within bow distance I passed them up both times-#1 not interested in eating it and didn't wanna take it for bragging reasons #2 to majestic of an animal for me to double lung one..lol it was awesome to say the least..to watch him scratch the leaves and sit like a dog and eat acorns.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
last two years of bow season i've had a black bear within bow distance I passed them up both times-#1 not interested in eating it and didn't wanna take it for bragging reasons #2 to majestic of an animal for me to double lung one..lol it was awesome to say the least..to watch him scratch the leaves and sit like a dog and eat acorns.
I'm pretty much thinking along these lines myself. Two deer per year is more than enough tasty meat for my small family, and my wife wants nothing to do with a bearskin. I could do without the expense of taxidermy and professional butchering as well. I think I'll leave bear hunting to more experienced hands.
 

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The artist formerly known as jhm8071
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So if the membership of New York Firearms would be kind enough to entertain a few noob question regarding bear hunting:

1. Is the meat as tasty as venison?

2. Can bear be butchered and processed at a typical deer butcher shop?

3. Do folks usually preserve the pelt, ala "bearskin rug"?

4. Do any of you deer hunters pass up an opportunity to shoot a bear? Why?

Is there anything else I should be asking, or some advice you'd care to share? I apologize in advance for my ignorance on this subject, but I figure it's better to be embarrassed here than to regret pulling the trigger later.
1. I like it. Like any game meat, it's all in how it is prepared. Just make sure it is cooked until at least medium.

2. Depends on the shop. Some will do it and some won't. I butcher all my own deer, so I can't really comment much more than that.

3. If I were able to shoot one, I would get it made into a rug and put it on the wall. If I had a ton of money and my own large man cave, I'd get a full mount.

4. I've never had an opportunity to take a bear, although we have found tracks where I hunt. If I had a shot on a boar, I would take it. I'd pass on a sow with cubs though.

My ultimate dream hunt would be take a large grizzly with a bow in Alaska. :D
 

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I personally would not take a shot as I don't want to drag that sucker out of the woods. Where I hunt there aren't many so I don't have to worry too much. Just to majestic for me to kill.
 
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