Summary of fall black bear hunting seasons

The department has identified the 2020 Spring Black Bear Special Permit Hunts. Spring black bear special permits are typically used to address specific management needs, such as tree damage on industrial managed timberlands, human-bear conflict and damage, or to better distribute harvest.  For more information, see the Big Game Hunting Seasons and Regulations pamphlet

Hunt Number Hunt Name Hunt Area Permits Season Dates 2019Apps/Avg Points
7000 Sherman GMU 101 50 Apr 1-Jun 15 986/4.08
7001 Kelly Hill GMU 105 50 Apr 1-Jun 15 637/3.9
7002 Douglas GMU 108 40 Apr 1-Jun 15 356/2.68
7003 Aladdin GMU 111 50 Apr 1-Jun 15 548/3
7004 49 Degrees North GMU 117 100 Apr 1-Jun 15 844/2.48
7005 Huckleberry GMU 121 100 Apr 1-Jun 15 941/3.19
7006 Blue Creek GMU 154 18 Apr 15-Jun 15 431/6.13
7007 Dayton GMU 162 18 Apr 15-Jun 15 84./5.33
7008 Tucannon GMU 166 5 Apr 15-Jun 15 620/4.4
7009 Wenaha GMU 169 60 Apr 15-Jun 15 758/4.9
7010 Mt. View GMU 172 24 Apr 15-Jun 15 349/4.9
7011 Lick Creek GMU 175 18 Apr 15-Jun 15 379/4.2
7012 Peola Game Management Unit 178 5 Apr 15-Jun 15 New
7013 Couse GMU 181 5 Apr 15-Jun 15 67/3.5
7014 Grande Ronde GMU 186 5 Apr 15-Jun 15 92/6.6
7015 Kitsap GMU 627 5 Apr 15-May 31 161/2
7016 Mason GMU 633 5 Apr 15-May 31 172/4.2
7017 Bear River GMU 681 20 Apr 15-May 31 250/2.55
7018 Long Beach* GMU 684 12 Apr 15-May 31 126/2.75
7019 North Skagit That portion of GMU 418 designated as the hunt area by DNR, Sierra Pacific, Weyerhaeuser-Columbia Timber Lands, and Grandy Lake Timber Company. 30 Apr 15-Jun 15 674/5.87
7020 Copalis GMU 642, 648, and 638 (excluding U.S. Forest Service lands). 50 Apr 15-Jun 15 316/2.2

Notes
* Private lands; access is extremely limited. If you cannot secure access to private lands, do not apply for these hunts.

Regulations

Bear identification program: Successful completion of the Black Bear Identification test is required for hunting black bear in GMUs 101, 105, 108, 111, 113, 117, 203, 204, 209, 215, 418, and 426. The test can be taken through the department’s Wild system at https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov.

Licensed Required: A valid big game hunting license and tag, which includes black bear as a species option, are required to apply and hunt for spring black bear.

Hunting Method: Hunters may use any legal weapon for hunting black bear.

Hunting with dogs and bait: Bait or hounds are not allowed for bear hunting. It is also unlawful to hunt over supplemental feed barrels (RCW 77.15.245).

Access: Hunters interested in hunting western Washington damage hunts should contact the appropriate WDFW Regional Office before submitting an application to find out what areas are open.

Bag limit: A bear taken during the permit season applies towards the annual two bear bag limit.

Only one black bear may be taken in eastern Washington during a license year.

Report requirement and Harvest Check: Hunters will be required to report hunting activity for each special permit awarded in addition to their general season hunting activity report.

Harvest Check, Submitting Biological Samples and Bear Teeth: All successful bear hunters must validate (notch) their bear tag, notify the department within 72 hours of kill (excluding legal state holidays) by calling 1-844-992-7266 to provide the hunter's name, date and GMU of kill, and sex of animal. The raw pelt, with evidence of sex, and skull must be presented to an authorized department employee for sealing within 5 days of kill. All permit hunters must comply with harvest reporting and submission of biological sample. Failure to comply with the submission of biological samples is a misdemeanor pursuant to RCW 77.15.280

Additional Information: Hunters are urged not to shoot females with cubs. Females may be accompanied by cubs in the spring that tend to lag behind when traveling. Please observe and be patient before shooting.

General information and bear harvest statistics for specific GMUs can be found in WDFW’s Hunting Prospects.

Application Submission Period: January 2 through midnight February 28, 2020.