Mathews Inc.
Is this ethical?
Bears
Contributors to this thread:
rattling_junkie 23-Jun-19
rattling_junkie 23-Jun-19
Dale06 23-Jun-19
Screwball 23-Jun-19
Grey Ghost 23-Jun-19
Franklin 23-Jun-19
Ucsdryder 23-Jun-19
Owl 23-Jun-19
Urbncwby 23-Jun-19
Bowfisher 23-Jun-19
spike buck 23-Jun-19
deerslayer 23-Jun-19
Brian M. 23-Jun-19
itshot 23-Jun-19
rattling_junkie 23-Jun-19
DConcrete 23-Jun-19
leo17 23-Jun-19
spike buck 23-Jun-19
rattling_junkie 23-Jun-19
spike buck 23-Jun-19
DConcrete 23-Jun-19
rattling_junkie 23-Jun-19
spike buck 23-Jun-19
badguybuster 23-Jun-19
Owl 23-Jun-19
Owl 23-Jun-19
WV Mountaineer 23-Jun-19
rattling_junkie 23-Jun-19
turkey talker 23-Jun-19
Screwball 23-Jun-19
Wild Bill 23-Jun-19
joehunter 23-Jun-19
rattling_junkie 23-Jun-19
Buffalo1 23-Jun-19
Screwball 23-Jun-19
Irishman 24-Jun-19
Owl 24-Jun-19
Kevin Dill 24-Jun-19
WV Mountaineer 24-Jun-19
K Cummings 24-Jun-19
LINK 24-Jun-19
Kevin Dill 24-Jun-19
Alexis Desjardins 24-Jun-19
WV Mountaineer 24-Jun-19
Brotsky 24-Jun-19
rattling_junkie 24-Jun-19
Ambush 24-Jun-19
APauls 24-Jun-19
sticksender 24-Jun-19
Ambush 24-Jun-19
TrapperKayak 24-Jun-19
APauls 24-Jun-19
Whitey 24-Jun-19
LINK 24-Jun-19
bad karma 24-Jun-19
map1 24-Jun-19
badguybuster 24-Jun-19
JusPassin 24-Jun-19
Owl 24-Jun-19
SteveB 24-Jun-19
DL 24-Jun-19
joehunter 24-Jun-19
BIG BEAR 24-Jun-19
joehunter 24-Jun-19
TravisScott 24-Jun-19
elkmtngear 24-Jun-19
Highlife 24-Jun-19
BIG BEAR 24-Jun-19
Recurvericky 24-Jun-19
Huntiam 24-Jun-19
Whitey 24-Jun-19
DL 24-Jun-19
Missouribreaks 24-Jun-19
svrelk 24-Jun-19
Rutnrod1995 25-Jun-19
Irishman 25-Jun-19
BIG BEAR 25-Jun-19
BIG BEAR 25-Jun-19
sticksender 25-Jun-19
K Cummings 25-Jun-19
BIG BEAR 25-Jun-19
carcus 25-Jun-19
LINK 25-Jun-19
APauls 25-Jun-19
BIG BEAR 25-Jun-19
wild1 25-Jun-19
Buskill 25-Jun-19
K Cummings 25-Jun-19
Whitey 25-Jun-19
BIG BEAR 25-Jun-19
APauls 25-Jun-19
Whitey 25-Jun-19
BowJangles 25-Jun-19
BIG BEAR 25-Jun-19
svrelk 25-Jun-19
DL 25-Jun-19
BIG BEAR 25-Jun-19
TD 25-Jun-19
Ambush 25-Jun-19
Hancock West 25-Jun-19
BIG BEAR 25-Jun-19
joehunter 25-Jun-19
sticksender 25-Jun-19
Kevin Dill 25-Jun-19
WV Mountaineer 25-Jun-19
Hancock West 25-Jun-19
23-Jun-19

23-Jun-19

From: Dale06
23-Jun-19
Who decides what’s ethical? For me, if it’s legal, and there is a humane kill, it’s ethical. Others may see it different, and that’s fine with me. I did not look at the video.

From: Screwball
23-Jun-19
That's about it. Have lots of bear dog hunters around me here and friends of mine. Not my cup of tea but, If condemning them we get into: bait, food plots, crossbows, compounds, game cams, and all areas. We need everyone together to fight the antis. That includes, trapping, fishing, farming etc.

From: Grey Ghost
23-Jun-19
I didn't look, either, but I can imagine.

It's not my style, but there are a lot of hunting methods I would never participate in. To each their own, as long as it's legal.

Matt

From: Franklin
23-Jun-19
I watched it....all things considered it wasn`t that bad. Personally I think a bear has less of a chance eluding hounds than say a mountain lion. But I agree with Screwball and Matt.

From: Ucsdryder
23-Jun-19
I’ve been on 1 hound hunt. I’d venture to say a very large percentage of bowsite members would not have been able to catch up to the treed animal. Three of us in excellent shape ran out of water and 1 guy drank from a creek because he couldn’t go any further. He ended up with giardia. I imagine most hound hunts are easier but that was a hunt I’ll never forget.

From: Owl
23-Jun-19
Ucsdryder x 2

I've been on exactly 1 successful bear hunt with hounds and I thought I was going to die. Bear hunting with hounds should be an Olympic event. It is absolutely fair chase.

From: Urbncwby
23-Jun-19
I know some of these guys personally. Hound hunting may not be your cup of tea and that’s fine. Watch some of their whitetail videos. 100% legit hunters, regardless of what season it is or what method their using.

From: Bowfisher
23-Jun-19
I’m friends with one of the members of The Untamed. They’re legit guys. And yes, it is ethical. Especially here in WV where we cannot bait bears, hound hunting is the only feasible way for hunters to keep bear populations in check.

From: spike buck
23-Jun-19
I've been on many bear hunts using hounds. Only reason we don't do it here anymore is because of Bear Management areas. Many hunters who think its too easy, cant keep up to the hounds. Change their minds after. I'll be in N.C. mid October hunting bears with hounds!!

Hound hunters tell me hunting bears over bait (Buffet) is unethical and only for sissies...

We always tied the dogs up once we decided to shoot the bear if it was treed. Not tying your dogs will kill them as the bears fall on them as they are baying underneath the bear. Not all bears here tree, many bears will run forever. The hunter has to follow where ever the bear goes. Also, just because you tree a bear, doesn't mean you have to shoot it. Many hound hunters walk away without shooting. Catch and release you can say.

From: deerslayer
23-Jun-19
A lot of people would condemn baiting as unethical. Hound hunting has a rich and long tradition in the many places. To me it doesn’t seem like much of an accomplishment to shoot a bear out of a tree with hounds, but then again shooting one off a bait barrel doesn’t seem super sporting when compared to spot and stalk. If a guy was chest thumping about shooting a big bear over hounds I would eye roll, but as far as ethical I think it is. No one seems to have a problem with hounds for lions. I also think what is ethical is very dependent on times and places. 1-200 years ago, no one thought about that regarding method of take. In fairness they also decimated game numbers, but my point is that ethical methods of take is a modern construct, and is not a one size fits all.

From: Brian M.
23-Jun-19
My only bear hunt so far was a hound hunt in Maine. More to hunt with my cousin than anything. Like many hunts. It's the chase that's exciting. Not necessarily pulling the trigger. But even that was a bit of an adrenaline rush, since I had never shot a bear before. The guide almost made it sound like the bear would hit the ground and come rip you to pieces. And although I've killed hundreds of animals, the thought was in my head. She was dead before she left the branch. Probably won't do another, but it was fun. Next time will be over bait (which may or may not be any better).

From: itshot
23-Jun-19

keep judging and questioning the ethics of the other guy, that'll help. . . .smh

23-Jun-19

23-Jun-19
I just returned from a baited bear hunt, that others did the baiting. Your hunt is much more difficult!

From: DConcrete
23-Jun-19
Because I live in the land of the free and I don’t accept anyone or any king telling me what to do?

From: leo17
23-Jun-19
Rattling Junkie, I see many bear photos posted in your profile. How were they Killed? assuming Baiting? Please explain to me how one is more "ethical" than the other? We have enough problems defending our lifestyle from antis. honestly i could understand someone who doesn't hunt having this opinion from watching that video but its a shock to hear that from a hunter.You may not choose to hunt this way but please keep in mind that ethics is a subjective ideal, one that has a large grey area.

From: spike buck
23-Jun-19
When chasing bears with a hound, you have no idea where that bear will run and finally be dispatched. A GPS collar takes the place of a trail cam that a bait hunter uses. I don't remember an easy kill site when hunting with hounds. Also there is no better feeling of harvesting a bear with hounds as the guys that can keep up are there to enjoy the catch and release or taking of the bear. At a bait site...you are the only one at the site when you take your shot. Have to wait for your buddies to come help. Because your buddies are with you at the tree or bayed bear, the excitement of the hunt is shared instantly.

A bait site brings the bear in to you. You can pretty well tell where the bear will expire. A good bear guide will know. Easier to get a bear out of a bait site rather than a 10 acre treed swamp 3 miles from the road.

A bear will stop and fight when it feels the need. I seen many a battered hound, along with a hunter or 2. No bear runs for its life!!!

Many provincial governments are constantly bombarded by anti hunters campaigning against baiting of bears. They also say baiting of a bear is an outdated tactic to lure bears in front of a hunter. Governments in many juristictions have banned hound hunting....is baiting next!!!

and we all know I actively bait bears for a living....

23-Jun-19

From: spike buck
23-Jun-19
I see that some of your wording has been edited!!...

From: DConcrete
23-Jun-19
Disappointed that some of us won’t lie face down and butt up when the pressure from the outside kicks in? Listen man, I get your question. But don’t doubt people’s desire for true freedom for even a nano second.

23-Jun-19
Chris I didn't edit any wording. I think you have come to see who I am by my time on Bowsite. Never did edit the wording. I might be many things, but I'm not a liar.

From: spike buck
23-Jun-19
For the record...you said "Hound hunting is an outdated tactic.."... now its gone *** I have much respect for you, I would never call you a liar!!

From: badguybuster
23-Jun-19
My biggest complaint (from first hand experience) is how much stress it puts on other wildlife. I know of 3 spectacular hunting spots that were ruined by guys running bear with hounds.

From: Owl
23-Jun-19
rattling junkie, This is a public forum so I'm not going to challenge you on the hypocrisy of your position. Instead, I will say you cannot judge the fair chase elements of a hound hunt on an 8 minute edited video. I know this because the same video could have been shot of my hunt and I was never closer than 3/4 of a mile to a truck. And that was after the bear was on the ground. Sure the hunt started from a truck and ended with loading a truck but, if that is the basis of judging a hunt ethical, we are ALL lacking.

BTW, the meat from the bear we chased 4 miles through the hollers of VA was delicious.

From: Owl
23-Jun-19
badguybuster, I get your point but the bears put "stress on other wildlife," too. And baiting is not legal in some of those states. As is the case with VA. Bears are either killed over hounds or as a pick-up species while deer hunting. The latter is just not strategy to manage the resource.

23-Jun-19
I've done a fair bit of hound hunting for bears in WV. It rarely works the way it did on that video. A bear that size is getting big enough that they don't like to climb much. They usually will just lumbar along killing dogs every time one gets close enough. Small enough to be lightning quick but, big enough to hurt when he climbs, unless you can get in front of it and kill it on the ground, you'll follow it for Lord knows how long rounding up injured, wore out dogs until you get them all. With the bear still going.

While that video did not show it well, plus they were hunting coal country with surface mine reclamation with a lot of roads, the terrain here is brutal in Southern WV. Absolutely separates the men from the boys with thousands of feet in elevation gain in the average mile. Rocky, laurel, thick as all get out, etc.... You could hunt here for years surrounded by hundreds of bears and never see them. Without dogs, the environment simply makes it so easy for them to evade you. And, they do.

Dogs by no means ensures a treed bear. And, unless you get lucky and can drive within a mile or so, you are going to be humping it in as rough a country a man can walk in. There is simply nothing unethical about this way of hunting. It might not be your cup of tea but, if you try it, you will earn it.

These guys know what they are doing. They use enough dogs to keep the bear occupied and put enough pressure on it to get it up a tree. If they didn't that bear would never tree. Eventually killing every dog that got too close. Don't judge it by emotion. As long as they don't dump fresh dogs on the track, there is nothing illegal or unethical about what you just saw.

23-Jun-19
WV Mountaineer thanks, that is a great explanation. Appreciate the civil response.

23-Jun-19

From: Screwball
23-Jun-19
Rattle Junkie, I understand your perspective based on the video. Bear dog hunting is as passionate as any other style or method other and you believe. Bear dog hunters believe baiting is the easy way to hunt bears and they are trained to be shot. As I stated not for me I don't like the noise of the dogs. The comparison to ethics of everything else in hunting is relevant to this discussion. All of these topics are intertwined when dealing with those hoping to end our way of life. I trap, farm, fish, etc. its all under attack. I as well am not sure what you were looking for? I would ask would this be the same for squirrel dogs, bird dogs, and the like as well?

From: Wild Bill
23-Jun-19
I've only experienced one hunt with hounds, and it was thrilling. I heard tales from my grandfather on running fox with hounds, but it wasn't until I followed hounds after a hog in Hawaii that I experienced the excitement of a chase, and appreciated the skills of the dogs and handler.

From: joehunter
23-Jun-19
To me Hunting bear with hounds is no different than hunting over a pointing dog for birds. Same result!

23-Jun-19

From: Buffalo1
23-Jun-19
I've hunted black bear with dogs and I would say this video is very realistic.

What is the difference between hunting black bear with dogs from hunting cougar, hog or raccoon ?

I was surprised to learn several years ago as to how dogs are used in polar bear hunting.

From: Screwball
23-Jun-19
Rattling Junkie: Morals: a person's standards of behavior or beliefs concerning what is and is not acceptable for them to do. Everyone's are different, society has norms that change. Don't get me started on what society accepts. I shot my first deer with a bow it was a doe, when I walked up to her, the fawns were standing over her. I questioned the ethics of hunting. I then came to understand hunting and my role. Not for you that's okay, lots of things are not for me. Doesn't mean your wrong for how you feel. Well maybe, LOL

From: Irishman
24-Jun-19
I have friends that hunt with hounds, but for mountain lions not bears. I have no desire to ever do it myself. I'm not saying its unethical, but it's just not for me. If dogs chase another animal down and have it stuck up a tree, and I show up and shoot it, then it was the dogs that did the hunting and all I did was the shooting, in my opinion.

From: Owl
24-Jun-19
" If dogs chase another animal down and have it stuck up a tree, and I show up and shoot it, then it was the dogs that did the hunting and all I did was the shooting, in my opinion."

-Lots of hunters object to guided hunts for similar reasons, Irishman. And that is fine but once you start deconstructing the arguments, they tends to collapse on themselves. Perhaps, we conflate suitability with ethical, sometimes.

From: Kevin Dill
24-Jun-19
Dogs and hunting go back as far as you can trace the domestication of wild dogs. As long as it was productive (and relatively safe) humans pursued wild game of all types using dogs. The only reason we have these discussions today is because we have the luxury (or curse) of allowing human emotion, preferences, ethics and social rules to enter the equation. How many are sweating about a squirrel treed by a dog and then killed for dinner?

24-Jun-19
^^^^This^^^^^

From: K Cummings
24-Jun-19
Once people come to the realization that modern hunting in the US really only exists for one primary reason, and that is for game departments to manage game populations, a lot of these legal/ethics discussions become irrelevant. Individual hunters hunt for their own reasons, therefore they have the luxury to pick and choose which legal methods, weapons and seasons they would like to use. Game departments don't have that luxury when game numbers, if left unchecked, create serious problems for society, the habitat, or the resource itself.

There are a variety of different weapons, methods, and seasons allowed in order to ultimately achieve the goals set by those departments. I personally don't have any interest in hunting bears with with dogs, but have hunted them over bait many times. Ironically, there are those that think hunting them over bait is unethical too. If both factions were successful in eliminating the method that they find unethical, bear populations would be completely out of control.

In my opinion, it's the game department's job to set the rules (hopefully based on science, not politics) and it's my choice which legal methods I choose to partake in.

KPC

From: LINK
24-Jun-19
I love it when I see hunters questioning the ethics of hunters. Baiting, hounds, spears, many gun hunters probably think archery is unethical. Regardless we need to be united. I’ve never hunted bears but I’m sure I’d love hunting them with hounds or over bait. RattlingJunkie your #2 has me baffled. As hunters we should absolutely endorse other methods of hunting. You may think hounds are tasteless and most antis would take your side right before coming for your bait barrel, right before releasing wolves and grizz, right before taking your hunting rights, right before....

From: Kevin Dill
24-Jun-19
But....

Since most fish and game director's positions are filled by political appointment, the department automatically becomes an extension of the state's prevailing political leadership. And that means factors like business & financial interests, social preferences and so on play into whether certain types of hunting are allowed to remain in favor. Easy enough to understand why my neighboring state of WV might allow a type of hunting which would have zero chance of happening in Colorado or California. Some states would rather have bears running amok in suburban areas versus the dastardly practice of running them with hounds or (choking up) baiting them to a kill site.

Hunters are NOT immune to social, moral and ethical constraints. In fact, we have likely never allowed ourselves to be more affected by them in the history of hunting. We're busy judging each other like never before.

24-Jun-19
I have no problem with it what ever works to keep the bear population in check.

24-Jun-19
WV most definitely has a bear problem. In years of low mast production, they get out of hand with suburbia’s interests. Every town and city will have bear traps at the fast food dumpsters. They walk around like they own the joint. Then disappear in late October until spring green up.

Dog hunters are by far the leading group of bear control with their influence. But, I doubt they kill as many as deer hunters that see them in the woods. The dog hunters shoot such a small percentage of what they tree. But, with bears literally every where, the DNR will take what they can get from any entity.

From: Brotsky
24-Jun-19
I shoot pheasants and ducks over my dog. What's the difference really? The only questions that matters is "Does it fit into your personal ethics?" If the answer is yes, then enjoy your hound hunt, if the answer is no, then hunt them over bait or spot and stalk. All methods are legal, humane, and effective. The rest is up to us to decide personally.

24-Jun-19

From: Ambush
24-Jun-19
Where I live, I consider bears as giant racoons at best and a predator scourge at worst. We don't allow baiting but do allow hound hunting, though I've never hunted behind hounds. I wouldn't draw a distinction between cats and bears.

That being said and while discussing the optics of ethics, I watched a Youtube video of a doe whitetail being taken down by hounds. About a dozen hounds had finally run the doe to exhaustion out in a field and hauled it down by sheer weight of the dogs hanging on to her. Several guys strolled over while the dogs chewed and the doe flopped around on the ground. One fellow casually stepped on the doe's head and slit her throat.

It may well be steeped in tradition for that area and people, but the optics of it is certainly bad for all hunting.

Where do you draw the line as to when your "legal method" affects other's ability to pursue other legal methods?

From: APauls
24-Jun-19
SOOOOOOOO much of what we deem moral, ethical, and normal has to do with the way we were raised. If you were raised sucking eyeballs out of fish for supper it's totally normal. Here, not so normal. In Louisiana they bite crawfish heads off and here (not too far away) people think it's disgusting.

Same goes with ethics. When you've been raised hunting with dogs it's normal, as is everything that goes along with it. Like hunting pigs with dogs and knifing them. Not my cup of tea but I wouldn't question it for a second.

Think about hunting externally for one second. Most hunters will head out hunting, kill an animal and then put it's head on the wall. THINK about this if you didn't grow up hunting. To me it's totally normal. But we literally kill animals and then take a picture holding it's dead head up. To most people, this is the absolute weirdest thing on planet earth. If you didn't grow up with it, or get introduced to it in the right way I understand people's reactions.

And that is why I would never question any type of hunting.

From: sticksender
24-Jun-19
My impression after watching the video is that they're a good solid bunch of hard-charging mountain boys, who I'd truly enjoy hunting with. As far as the eye-appeal of the video....after the kill I saw none of usual turn-offs, like hysterical cackling, high-fiving, or pinky&thumb horn-throwing gestures that you sometimes see from city boys in their videos. Just a good honest taking-care-of-business approach from guys who've probably been doing this their entire lives. I felt a similar positive reaction after watching the OP's video about his son taking his first bear this spring. I support all kinds of legal hunting, and don't feel a need to over-analyze the methodology, or fret endlessly over esoteric points of ethics. It's just good basic honest hunting.....a time-honored practice without which none of us would currently exist. I leave the fake intellectualizing to the liberal moon-bats who don't even know where their buffalo wings come from.

From: Ambush
24-Jun-19
In the big picture, it really comes down to individual rights affecting community rights. Substitute "privileges" for "rights" if you like.

That's the new reality we live in. Your ability to hunt may well depend on how others view my methods of hunting.

From: TrapperKayak
24-Jun-19
About as red as it gets but a lot of worse things happening in the world, that's for sure. I far prefer this to the citiot crap so prevalent now days. I'd do a hound hunt for bear. I've hunted over dogs all my life for other stuff. Not hounds with bear of cat but a lot of bird hunting. This hunt is not unethical, it is a hunt for bear as it should be. No worse than a barrel hunt. Bears are just another wild animal that should be hunted.

From: APauls
24-Jun-19
bowsette, my opinion is that how we were raised plays a massive part, not that it is the sole determinant to how we end up. Our experiences in our formative years to a large part form in our brain what is and isn't acceptable. From there we continue to warp it as we get older ;)

From: Whitey
24-Jun-19
I ended up with primitive archery gear to make hunting harder. I believe hounds and bait are great game management tools. I see no honor for myself in shooting an animal treed by dogs or over bait as a sport. If you do that’s your business . I have hunted pheasants ,quail and hun my whole life and never once used a dog. Had no issue with obtaining limits. I kept myself fed in college hunting birds before class. The logic that man has been doing it since the beginning of time falls short. We are no where near as desperate for food today as we were even 50 years ago. If We were short of food there would be no rules nor ethics.

Where I live we are over run with bears, I believe Washington has the highest bear pop in the lower 48. I am 25 minutes from downtown seattle. Right now is my favorite time of year watching the 2 year olds on their own for the first time getting into all sorts of predicaments. I have a video of 3 raiding garbage cans last week. I have video of 6 in one small apple tree last sept. They nailed 11 cans on a mile stretch of road last week. Bird feeders are not safe right now. The stories people have about their exploits are like the old Disney Drama in real life shows I used to watch before movies at the theatre when I was a kid. The tops of the wild cherry trees swing wildly on a windless day as the sows and 2 year old shake cherries to the ground. Having to lock up your garbage and take down the feeders is a tiny price to pay for the excitement of seeing these animals up close and personal daily.

From: LINK
24-Jun-19
Junkie tell me what your free thinking, legal hunter judging self thinks is different about baiting and hound hunting from an ethical standpoint?

So were straight, I’m against neither. I just don’t see how you are on the moral high ground. If you didn’t bait anything I might take your posts as mere ignorance. Knowing that you bait just makes your post seam like a bunch of bull butter to me.

From: bad karma
24-Jun-19
I do not like threads like this one, as all they do is promote discord, and give anti-hunters a chance to quote hunters declaring certain hunting techniques "unethical."

They serve no useful purpose.

From: map1
24-Jun-19
I guess rabbit, grouse pheasants, etc... hunting with dogs is unethical too.

From: badguybuster
24-Jun-19
I do find it interesting that here in WV hounds are legal but baiting is not.

From: JusPassin
24-Jun-19
I grew up with a hunting hound by my side and took hundreds of squirrels and coon and fox with her. Not a damn thing unethical about it, probably the most natural way to hunt there is.

From: Owl
24-Jun-19
I agree bad karma. I’ll conceived.

Badguybuster, in VA the f&g folks would say baiting will increase habituation and ,thus, conflict. Perceived ethics do not enter into it. At least, overtly. Just offering “the VA” perspective.

From: SteveB
24-Jun-19
Don't knock it if you haven't tried it. It is exciting, super fun, action packed and physically exhausting! My guess is that many who would knock it just couldn't get to the tree! Special fun is a "bay up" on the ground! Trust me, the bear is not defenseless in the slightest..

From: DL
24-Jun-19
Took away hound hunting in california and Oregon. 6000+ cats in Oregon and growing, 6500+ cats in California. 35,000 bears in Ca. And people wonder why deer hunting is suffering. One thing about using hounds in bear hunting is you know what you’re shooting. Most bears are shot here as a chance encounter. How many sows with cubs end up getting shot because of this? Doesn’t happen with hounds. I’ve shot bears with hounds and just out hunting for them. With the hounds by the time I got to the bear I was winded and adrenaline was flowing so bad I had to calm down before shooting. Part of the enjoyment with hounds is just watching dogs work. I enjoy watching working dogs do whatever they do best. Hound hunts don’t always end up with an animal shot. Chasing bears with hounds also keeps the bears fearful of man. This makes for fewer bear encounters in homes. We’ve got a mess here with bears showing up in cities and homes.

From: joehunter
24-Jun-19
All you self-righteous "I will not hunt bear with a dogs" people want to pick and choose what is ethical hunting. No difference hunting bear with hounds than with a quivering with excitement lab over decoys, frantic high strung German short hair pointer just before he locks up, or a beagle making sweet music chasing rabbits. So, I bet you also "feel" it is not right to use blood tracking dogs to find wounded deer. God forbid I bring up trapping. By the way this is a site that is basically all about putting a sharp stick through an animals body till it bleeds to death. Lots of other on line sites that might fit in with your so called "ethics" better than Bowsite! Surprised you are here!

PS - my old hound REX is rolling over in his grave and he never chased a bear in his life!

From: BIG BEAR
24-Jun-19
The Michigan Bear Hunters Association raises lots of money to defend hunting of all types against the antis. I am a member. The organization consists mainly of houndsmen..... I am a bait hunter,, Though I have been on one hound hunt and killed a bobcat.

I support my houndsmen brothers 110% and agree with the statements above....

Why would you feel any differently about hunting bears with dogs than you would hunting birds or rabbits with dogs ??

From: joehunter
24-Jun-19
Amen Big BEAR!

From: TravisScott
24-Jun-19
Ethics are such a personal belief that it’s not worth arguing in my opinion.

That being said I have had hounds and chased bears with them when I lived in Idaho. I’ve also killed quite a few bears over bait. There is not a doubt in my mind that it takes WAY more work to develop dogs to the point where they will put a bear up a tree. I wish more states allowed hound hunting to be honest.

From: elkmtngear
24-Jun-19
With black bears historically being the number one cause of elk calf and fawn mortality in many States...ethics shouldn't even be questioned.

Predators need to be controlled by any means possible.

From: Highlife
24-Jun-19
Joe hunter and Big Bear a big AMEN ! Walkers for life :)

From: BIG BEAR
24-Jun-19
I guarandamntee to you that the antis will try to outlaw bear baiting where you hunt. Having a good response to the antis emotional BS isn’t enough. To win at the ballots it takes money. Lots of it. The kind of money that organizations like the Michigan Bear Hunters raises and spends to combat anti hunting agendas at the ballot boxes.

From: Recurvericky
24-Jun-19
I have hunted bear, boar, deer and raccoon with hounds. Mostly deer and I can honestly say that no hunting is as exciting as hunting with hounds.

From: Huntiam
24-Jun-19
We hunt them everyday of season in va with hounds...this is not the way most hunts go but it does happen..our group kills more than anyone in Southwest va yr after yr and it’s been 4 or 5 yrs since we’ve had a dog killed by a bear.. but it does happen them guys should of snuck into that tree and been a little more quite and that bear prob would not of bailed..2/3 guys go in talking and hollering they will bail 9 out of 10 times and that’s how u get dogs hurt ...

From: Whitey
24-Jun-19
I disagree that the topic should not be brought up because it’s divisive. We need to figure out amongst our selves what’s fair chase and ethical and what’s we are going to position as ethical game management or the non hunters will do it for us. I believe every single state has fewer hunters today than they did 30 years ago and the trend is picking up speed. Hunters are out numbered by non hunters in every state. The antis are a small fraction of the non hunters. The non hunters will drive the policy going forward as they have in Washington,Oregon and calif. They would rather have the state trap and euthanize a bear than see it chased by dogs and shot out of a tree for fun and money. They couldn't care less how you feel about it and they have the numbers just not the organization yet. It’s a viral video or two away from being a reality.

From: DL
24-Jun-19
Antis would rather have wolves bears and coyotes eat animals alive than have a human hunt them. They have no ethics nor morals in what they want or how they get it. Many of them now want the end of eating meat or “enslaving animals” for food. It’s become a sick world.

24-Jun-19
I appreciate how much effort and expense goes into a good string of hounds. I never mind being in the woods with dogs and their owners, the music is enjoyable.

From: svrelk
24-Jun-19
I think folks should just , Shut up & Hunt... Division among our ranks will be the end of us all.

From: Rutnrod1995
25-Jun-19
I'm usually pretty outspoken about this topic, but I think hound hunting is far from ethical. You spend your day letting the dogs do the hunting, you just tag along and to finish it off you terrify the animal before shooting it.... To me it is barbaric and I appreciate taking an animal quick, clean and without its knowledge (if possible). Though, plenty will disagree, plenty will say bait is unethical, treestands are unethical and that anybody who uses a crossbow is unethical. However, all of those things still require skill. Dog hunting consists of getting a good hound and getting it trained right, then you let it loose and it tracks the animal for you and puts it up a tree, just my opinion I suppose.

From: Irishman
25-Jun-19
Black Bear hunting must be a lot tougher in other states than it is here in Montana. I wouldn't use hounds or bait if they were legal, and I've never shot one with a rifle. The reason has nothing to do with ethics, it's because it's not exactly that tough to kill them with a bow through spot and stalk. The first animal I killed with a bow was a black bear. The first animal my son killed with a long bow was a black bear. Like I said, it must be a lot tougher in states where hounds and bait are legal.

From: BIG BEAR
25-Jun-19
“Terrify the animal before shooting it”.........”Barbaric “......... Rutnrod...... that sounds like something a Hollywood animal rights activist would say......Don’t you think anti hunters think ALL HUNTING IS BARBARIC...???..

Do you spend as much time thinking about coon hunters ??? Why is it that bears are so special that you concern yourself about how other people hunt them..... ?? Yet there’s coon hunting,,, duck ,, grouse,, Rabbit,, Squirrel,,, Pigs,,,, Bobcat,,, Cougars,,, Even deer....... That are being hunted with the aid of dogs throughout the country.......

Why do people.... even HUNTERS get so emotional about bears ??? They need to be managed like any other species....... don’t they ??

From: BIG BEAR
25-Jun-19
I don’t know how to post videos. Can someone please give me an assist and google.....”Hound hunting explained. Conservation, Tradition, and The Heart of the Houndsmen “........

It’s a good video put out by my organization, the Michigan Bear Hunters Association,, Along with the Michigan Hunting Dog Federation and the U.P. Bear Houndsmen...........

From: sticksender
25-Jun-19
Here you go Big Bear:

From: K Cummings
25-Jun-19
If bear (or any) hunting is ever eliminated, the fault will be laid at the feet of the hunting community, not the feet of the anti or non hunters.

Our penchant for eating our own is rather sad.

KPC

From: BIG BEAR
25-Jun-19
Thanks Greg....... I hope some of the guys who have posted here take the time to watch that video........

That film is a production of Bear Hunting Magazine by the way........... KUDOS to Bear Hunting Magazine for recognizing and supporting houndsmen and bear hunting with hounds.

From: carcus
25-Jun-19
Ethical idk? Incredibly stressful on the bear yes!

From: LINK
25-Jun-19
“Terrifying and stressful on the bear.”

Guess you guys have never seen a boar running cubs up a tree just like those dogs. What about wolves pulling bears out of dens to eat them. This death of getting run up a tree and shot with a gun is as clean a death as a bear could want. Nature is cruel and terrifying, get over your Disney view of animals.

From: APauls
25-Jun-19
i don't put carcus in this camp but if I was worried about the stress levels of the animals I was pursuing I wouldn't hunt them. My aim is to kill them.

From: BIG BEAR
25-Jun-19
Would you stop fishing because of the stress you put on a huge pike before you released it ??

From: wild1
25-Jun-19
I wouldn't do it, not because of ethics, just not my cup of tea. Many, many guys on here have no interest in hunting Africa, I have no interest in hunting bears with hounds - I think it's because it's the one method of hunting where something else (the dogs) are doing most of the hunting.

From: Buskill
25-Jun-19
Without dogs you’ll not make a dent in the bear populations in Va and WV. The terrain here is in no way compatible with spot and stalk hunting and random encounters of course happen but most hunters I know have never seen a bear in the woods or at most got a glimpse or two . The bears here are kinda like goats , go high and higher still and lay up in terrible thickets of laurel and briars . Just before hunting season you may find a farmer with a kill permit cause a bear is eating his corn but that’ll be the only time you ever pattern one . Bear hunters here might tree 30-40 a year but they’ll only kill a handful . Still , they are the ones putting the biggest #’s on the ground . Without the bear guys my area would be swamped . I see bears quit a bit cause I run a lot of steep ridges and tough areas but still I rarely ever have a shot even with a gun .

From: K Cummings
25-Jun-19
Same is true here in Michigan Buskill.

Different terrain calls for different tactics.

KPC

From: Whitey
25-Jun-19
I don’t get it’s too hard to hunt argument from states over run with deer and where sitting in trees to hunt deer is common practice. It would be Harder to find more dense vegetation than the Western Washington jungle and we don’t have any problem hunting bear ,deer and elk. I don’t know anyone here that uses tree stands. Btw bear and cougar success rate went up after hounds were banned. Tags were cheap or free and you could kill two.

From: BIG BEAR
25-Jun-19
Cougar success rate went up after hounds were banned ???? Really ??? Can you provide information that supports that ??? Tags were cheap or free.... ?? Free ?? Seriously ??

You said in your first post that hounds and bait are great management tools for bears.... So exactly where do you stand on the issue ??

From: APauls
25-Jun-19
Whitey come to Manitoba one of the premier black bear destinations in North America and kill one in the spring spot and stalk. Chance of death via insect is 50% and chance of seeing a bear is 3%

From: Whitey
25-Jun-19
I could care less how someone else chooses to hunt as long as it’s legal. I am an advocate of spot and stalk . The success rate went up because very few people would buy a tag before the ban. when the state included one for free with the deer and elk tag you had 300k hunters in the woods with tags. Simple math. I would like to see anything but spot and stalk moved away from being managed as a sport hunting opportunity and moved into a separate game/wildlife management program. I believe that doing so it will be easier to defend take opportunity for both. I can guarantee you that hound and bait hunting will be banned unless it’s positioned differently. You can raise all the money you want those opposed have the numbers on their side. I have witnessed it, It’s not an if but when.

From: BowJangles
25-Jun-19
I'm with David here. It's not my cup of tea either. The look and feel of bear or deer hunting over dogs doesn't sit well with me.

That being said I'm hunting cougar this fall over hounds. It's the only method of effectively hunting them. If another effective method was available I'd go that way.

Is that hypocritical? Maybe. Do I care? No. As long as the method of take is legal then knock yourself out but it doesn't mean others have to like it or agree with it.

From: BIG BEAR
25-Jun-19
If we as a bear hunting community want to look at ourselves in the mirror and decide what is ethical and what is not ethical...... My suggestion is to start with harvesting black bears and leaving the carcass in the woods........

Bear meat is good to eat..... and if you don’t want it... give it to someone who does (ME...)

I’ve been to enough bear camps to see that some guides are perfectly fine with simply taking the hide and skull off a bear and leaving the carcass in the woods for the wolves and scavengers.... How do you think that looks to non hunters.....???

If we as a bear hunting community want to scrutinize ourselves....... I suggest we start there.

From: svrelk
25-Jun-19
Get off your high horse, folks. If you've never trained a hound, if you never established a bait, you simply are unqualified to have an opinion on the matter... I've done all three and each has its own challenges... In the end an animal dies..... It's the nature of life... SHUT UP AND HUNT LIKE YOU PLEASE.. AND LET ME DO THE SAME...

From: DL
25-Jun-19
Big Bear look what happened to BC with Grizzly Hunting. You can only keep the meat only.

From: BIG BEAR
25-Jun-19
Whitey..... My home state of Michigan used to allow deer hunters to shoot bears on a deer license too..... a long long time ago. The problem with that is there’s no regulation on the number of bears that will be killed in any given year.......

Now we have much more scientific management of bears,, with a lottery and permit system that allows our bear managers to accurately predict how many bears will be killed in each unit every year.

The Michigan Bear Hunters Association has asked the DNR for 3 or 4 years now to reduce the number of tags available to help strengthen the bear population. Imagine that........ A hunting organization (hound hunters)........ Going to the DNR and asking them to reduce the number of bear tags.

From: TD
25-Jun-19
If you want to, you can question the "ethics" of hunting at all..... no one is doing it for their survival. Hunting with hounds is a blast. Hunting with dogs in general is a blast. But someone with first world time on their hands..... urban world and dealing with first world problems to stare at the navel and contemplate the meaning of lint....

Since when did degree of difficulty factor into "ethics"? Africa, baiting, hounds, trapping, high fence, I'd even toss in rifles. It's all hunting..... well, I only bowhunt, better yet only spot and stalk.... what I do is harder..... that makes me the better person.....

If a person needs to tell themselves little fairy tales and that how they hunt is "better" and more "ethical" so as to ease whatever guilt they have about hunting..... knock yourselves out. Fat people can justify that ice cream sunday is made with milk..... but they aren't eating it because it's healthy for them....

If a person has to play those "ethics" games in their head, fine. I have no issue with that, it's a personal matter. I do take issue when someone tries to include me and others in their fantasy.

Funny, the animals we hunt have no such issues..... last thing on that bear's mind is the emotional state of the fawn it's dragging out of it's bed....

From: Ambush
25-Jun-19
DL, we (as in licensed, non-indigenous) can’t hunt grizzlies at all. Our newly elected provincial government simply announced it was not ethical. End of hunt!!

From: Hancock West
25-Jun-19
I'm gonna have to agree with rattling_junkie. The video just wasn't for me. But regardless if this is ethical or not, this video will no doubt cast a dark shadow over all hunters. Anti's don't care which method, yes they hate bow hunters too. They don't care if you are a good hunter or a poacher, they hate any and all who kill animals and will do everything to stop us. Videos like this will just make the crazy liberals want to drop more wolves all over the country. Unfortunately, Conservatives & Hunters are not appreciated enough in America these days.

From: BIG BEAR
25-Jun-19
^^^. Matt. Do you think a video of a bear hunt over bait where a loud death moan is heard casts a favorable shadow on hunting in the eyes of those crazy liberals ??

BowJangles. Yes that is hypocritical. To say that you don’t like or agree with hound hunting for bears but you are going on a lion hunt with hounds..... What will you say to other hunters who say that lion hunting doesn’t sit well with them ???

From: joehunter
25-Jun-19
Wow - even Bowsite has turned into the land of Disney!

From: sticksender
25-Jun-19
The workings of the Real World shown in brilliant 4k video is not for everyone. As an example, perhaps it would be worthwhile to create a video showing close-ups of cute mice, voles, ground squirrels, baby rabbits, and etc, having their body parts amputated by the field cultivation equipment used to grow Kale for the Vegans. I'm guessing most Vegans would never watch, since out-of-sight is out-of-mind. Those outraged by the OP's video, I'd assume will soon be similarly outraged by Kale farming.

From: Kevin Dill
25-Jun-19
I have exactly no problem using dogs for hunting. But when the question comes to ETHICS, you're asking people to express something very personal. Regardless of what I think about the video, I think a huge majority of non-hunting Americans would watch that video and declare the practice barbaric and unethical....to them. Again, not me.

25-Jun-19
I have no beef with any opinion on this. Only to say it isn't the dogs doing most of the hunting. They do the treeing but, Humans have to lead the dogs to the track. In which you could walk for days before you find one hot enough to get the dogs going.

People can choose to do and feel how they want. but,it obvious that most of you guys that say it isn't your cup of tea, have zero experience doing it. That's ok too. But, you will never understand your misconception until you try it.

From: Hancock West
25-Jun-19
Big Bear - Ive never hunted over bait for bear but will soon and looking forward to it. I disagree with states that say baiting bears is bad but hunting them with hounds are ok. I look at sitting by a barrel the same as sitting on a food plot. I did think about cat hunting once but if its like that video ill pass on it. Didnt say it was unethical, i said it wasnt for me and that it could be used against the hunting community. I hope that video doesnt hurt the bear hunting with hounds like Cecil did to the lion business. Itll happen again and again. I despise these type of people but i give them credit they usually put up one hell of a fight. I hate to say it but Hunters & Conservatives sometimes dont. Im guilty of that myself.

This Topic has been locked. Thank you.

  • Sitka Gear