UNION TOWNSHIP, N.J. (AP) — Wildlife officials say no charges will be brought against a deer hunter who shot and killed a small, aggressive black bear that climbed toward his tree stand.
State Environmental Protection Department Spokesman Larry Ragonese says the 24-year-old Sayreville man was in the Clinton Wildlife Management Area in Hunterdon County when the shooting occurred around 10 a.m. Saturday.
Armed with a 12-gauge shotgun, the hunter was in a tree stand about 10 to 12 feet up when he inadvertently made some noise that drew the young male bear's attention. The bruin, estimated to weigh about 85 to 100 pounds, started to climb up a tree trunk supporting the stand.
The hunter shouted at the bear several times, hoping to scare it away. Fearing for his safety, he shot the bear once when it was about 3 feet away from him.