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MT Hunters, Got Pepper?

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September 6, 2007

Montana hunters need to be prepared for some competition this season. Monica Fella with the Sierra Club Grizzly Bear Project encourages hunters to be well equipped and always carry bear pepper spray in the Big Sky backcountry.

"Bear pepper spray does not have to be aimed precisely, like a gun would have to be. Experts agree there is no better way to stop an attack by an aggressive grizzly."

Fella says grizzlies are in "eating machine" mode this time of year, trying to pack on as many pounds as possible before winter. They tend to be more aggressive in the fall, especially when they think there is competition for food.
Before heading out, Fella encourages sportsmen to call the local ranger district and ask about recent bear activity so those areas can be avoided. Successful hunters need to be aware that fresh kill can be a strong lure for a grizzly bear and plan accordingly.

"Field dress the carcass and get it out of there as quickly as possible. If a hunter would have a conflict over harvested big game, it's obviously not worth a confrontation."

Deborah Smith/Chris Thomas, Public News Service - MT