BOSTON (WWLP) – A hunter was charged in Massachusetts for baiting bears during the first week of bear season.

Near the end of the 2021 bear hunting season, Environmental Police were notified of two tree stands that were placed over bait. A few days before the beginning of bear season in September 2022, officers returned to the area and found that bait was placed five days before the season opened Officers then began to survey the area over the next several days.

On Saturday, September 10, officers found two people in the tree stands, with one of the individuals holding a rifle. The bait under the stands had been restocked with sunflower seeds, popcorn, marshmallows and peanut butter spread on trees.

The hunter holding the rifle admitted to Environmental Police that they were hunting bears and was charged with hunting bear over bait. The hunter’s rifle was seized and the area has been closed to bear hunting until after the end of the second bear hunting season in November. Environmental Police did not identify the hunter or the location at this time.

Illegal hunting methods:

  • It is illegal to use dogs during bear hunting
  • Using bait for bear hunting is illegal, including use of lure, scents or any substance that may attract a bear.
  • Wanton waste: It is unlawful to intentionally leave a wounded or dead animal in the field or forest without making a reasonable effort to retrieve and use it. However, this does not apply to animals unfit for consumption use (animals that parts are damaged, destroyed, decayed, rotting, diseased, or infected.)