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KG243

Any tips for a new bear hunter?

15 posts in this topic

I am a avid hunter and have the chance to go to a area that has a big sow with two cubs. The local farmers that have seen the bear say she is at least 400 lbs. I am going to use my 308 with 180 grain fedral ammo. What are some good tips that I may need to know. Thanks in advance for your tips!

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Although legal to shoot a sow with cubs, many people, like myself, shy away from doing so. Its your choice. Do what you want. Put out a bait with some sweets and hope it comes in.

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Yea shooting mamma with cubs, I myself would'nt, but it is personal preference. If there last years cubs it might not be long befor she shoos them away to breed, When is the breeding rut for bear soon is'nt it? boar

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Breeding season for bear I think is May/June. Cubs are probably this years cubs. The biggest bear I've seen was a cinnamon color-phase sow that I'm sure went over 300lbs. She had 1 cinnamon and 1 black cub. Passed on the sow without regret. To each there own though.

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Not a very good thing to shoot a sow with cubs. The cubs will not have much of a chance without the sow. The dominant boar in the area will probably take care of them soon after. If you are planning on shooting her, I wouldn't be posting about it as it is ammo for the anti's. This could spark some strong debate among hunters, let alone non hunters. To each their own though, if it's not illegal, it's your choice.

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this is exactlly what i am looking for I am a NEW bear hunter so I do not know these things. So if their is a big sow in the area there should be some boars right? Thanks for the advice.

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So if their is a big sow in the area there should be some boars right? Thanks for the advice.

Well she didn't get herself pregnant. wink Look within a few miles for an area with a little more cover and a "safer/darker" feel to it, such as river bottoms, swamps etc etc. Mama will keep the cubs up high on the ridge where the walking is easy and chase dad off to the peaceful swamp if he gets to close to her cubs.

Plus in Minnesota some boars and even Sow cub combos have been known to travel 15 miles in a very short time, so you may just have a good area that holds bear. Could be a sow one night and a boar the next. So when you sit over your bait keep some of this in mind:

Cubs hit the bait first, like Pete Rose coming into home plate. The next bear you will see is the sow...unless lots of "woofing" and stomping takes place chasing the cubs up a tree, then it could be a boar coming in. Now it is judgment time, just as if a boar come in alone.

Boars will have a "large lanky" look to them compaired to a sow's "small stocky" look. Most MN sows rarely reach 5 1/2 feet long trophy bruins will hit six feet.

Sow's snout looks like a pig snout, short and sqaut like a hog and the boars have that long old man nose.

Boars ears look small and as if they stick out of the side of the head and a smaller sow has larger ears that appear to stick out the top of the head like Mickey Mouse.

Boars swagger in and move like a machine. Slow steady and always knowing there place and next move, other smaller bear are always looking, listening and checking their back trail.

Put yourself down a six foot log to gauge the bear off of, it will make a huge difference in judging them.

Hope this helps with making sure yo have a boar in the sites.

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I've never had a big boar hitting the same bait as a sow with cubs. Typically it seems like sows try to avoid dominant boars because they kill cubs. I wouldn't think of shooting a sow with cubs. First off it takes a while for a sow to hit sexual maturity, they are not like deer. Secondly, killing a sow with two cubs is like killing three bears Truth be told I won't shoot any sow if I can help it.

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If you do go bring a camera with you. Taking pictures of a sow with cubs that close is awesome. You will remember it forever.

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I have hunted bear longer than most and in more places than most. I shipped a fair number of galls to the Orient in the 70's when it was legal. I remember a $10 bounty on bears in Minnesota in the 60's.

Not to say they aren't out there--and I know Minnesota has some big bears--but I have never seen a 400lb sow bear.

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speaking of the ears on a big boar - if you can fit a beer bottle crossways between the ears its a BIG bear! They are extremely hard to judge on the ground - unless like Canada where you can use barrels. I had a Canadian guide tell me on my first trip bear hunting in Canada - if hes as tall as the barrel : shoot him. If hes taller than the barrel : shoot him twice! Good luck - bear huntings a blast !

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that's good advice. If you are in doubt of it being a big bear, then it isn't big. When a big bear comes in, there is no question, it is obvious that he is BIG.

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