Photo: black bear

Reed Ryan

                               August 15-October 15

Photo: black bear swimming

                                 Stephen Penske


Bear hunting season starts August 15.

You may encounter gun and bow hunters and their bear baits.

When the Ontario government cancelled the spring bear hunt in 1999, it lengthened the fall bear hunt by starting it earlier, on August 15, instead of September 1. 

Bear hunters commonly attract bears by setting out effective baits of odorous food on or near trails or back roads.

Tips to Avoid Bear Hunters and Baits During Hunting Season

Don't travel at dusk or dawn. This is when most hunters are active.
Be cautious near roads, ATV trails and boat-accessed lakes and the trails or back roads off them. Most bear hunters do not venture far from motorized travel and few hunters fly into remote lakes.
Stay on portage trails and don't explore other trails
Be seen and be heard. If in an area where you suspect there may be hunters or bait, be seen by wearing brightly colored hat or clothing. Be heard by talking or singing to warn of your presence.  

Areas of Concern

Possible lakes and rivers with baits and hunters. 

Travel on lakes is not a concern.  Just be aware when traveling off the lakes, on or near trails.

Hunters want to be out of sight and  undisturbed by other people. Note that it is illegal to hunt bear while they are swimming or in their dens.

This list represents lakes and rivers that are road- and boat-accessible and is not a complete list of all areas where there may be hunters nor does it guarantee hunters will be present. It is only a guideline. 

Lake Temagami Lady Evelyn Lake
Cross Lake Willow Island Lake
Temagami River Sucker Gut Lake
Red Cedar Lake Montreal River
Red Squirrel Lake West Montreal River
Anima Nipissing Lake Bay Lake
Obabika Lake Wanapitei River
Wawiagama Lake Maskinonge Lake
Gull Lake Matagamasi Lake
lower Sturgeon River Chiniguchi Lake
Fourbass Lake Chiniguchi River
Rabbit Lake Wanapitei Lake
Cassels Lake

Wolf Lake

All lakes and rivers near Highways 11,  805, 65, 69, 560

Hunt-Free Areas

Hunting is illegal in the following parks:

Lady Evelyn-Smoothwater Wilderness Park

Finlayson Point Park (Temagami)

W.J.B. Greenwood Park (Latchford)

Hunting and Baiting Reported Near Portage

During Peak Canoe Season

This advisory was prompted by a confirmed report that there has been bear baiting and hunting on the North Arm of Lake Temagami in August for the last two seasons. In one case, baits were set within 300 yards of the Devil's Bay portage by an outfitter from outside Temagami. The baits were on old, non-portage trails leading off the lake. Canoeists, unfamiliar with the portage location, could accidentally follow the wrong the trail, thinking it was the portage, and end up at the bait site. Baits were set up on Devil's Bay before August 15, in anticipation of the opening of the hunting season. 

Upset With Hunting During Canoe Season?

Mail or fax the Minister of Natural Resources and ask him to change the start of bear-hunting season to September 15 to protect canoeists during the peak canoe season.

Hon. Jerry Ouellette

Ontario Minister of Natural Resources 

Room 6301, Whitney Block 

99 Wellesley St. W. 

Toronto, Ontario, M7A 1W3 

Fax: (416) 314-2216 

Phone: (416) 314-2301


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