Alaska Department of Fish and Game
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Online Bear Baiting Clinic
Once you’ve baited your bear bait site and let it sit for awhile, it’s time to check the activity in your area. Check the bait every couple of days until bears start hitting the bait. The best time to hunt is early mornings and late evenings. If a bear approaches from behind your stand, resist the urge to turn around and check it out. Patience is a key trait of a successful bear baiter. Take the time to look each bear over. As we’ve already discussed, make sure the bear is not a grizzly or a female black bear with cubs. If you are hunting for a trophy, be sure to look closely at the bear’s hide. Are there rubbed areas? If you are patient, you will have opportunities to look at more than one bear.
There are two schools of thought when it comes to scent management around your baiting site. Some bear hunters choose to intentionally leave their scent (e.g., an old shirt) around the bait so the bears become accustomed to it. Others believe that mature adult bears may avoid the site if it contains an abundance of human odor. Some bears are wary of human scent, as are some white-tailed deer. To reduce the possibility of bears avoiding the site, some hunters prefer to take precautions such as wearing rubber boots, rubber gloves, and scent shields. Some even go so far as to use scent-free soaps.
As stated earlier, do your best to select adult male bears. This is the best form of wildlife management you can practice, and selecting males can help ensure the future of bear hunting in your areas. It is also important not to kill too many bears from one station. Have alternate sites and options planned so your hunting pressure is spread out.