Proposal to reduce the minimum distance requirement for placement of bait from rights of way and trails for black bear hunting
Ontario Regulation 665/98 (Hunting)
Regulation - LGIC
Bill or Act:
Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act, 1997, S.O. 1997, c.41.
Summary of Decision:
We decided to proceed with the proposed changes to reduce the minimum distance requirement for placement of bait from rights of way for public vehicular traffic and marked and maintained recreational trails for black bear hunting from 200 metres to 30 metres.
Analysis of Regulatory Impact:
The anticipated environmental consequences of the proposal are expected to be neutral. Ontario is home to a healthy black bear population that is being managed to provide sustainable hunting and trapping opportunities for now and years to come.
The anticipated social consequences of the proposal are both positive and negative. The reduction in distance from rights of way for vehicular traffic and recreational trails will provide more flexibility in bait placement for outfitters and hunters. Individuals and groups concerned with: the use of bait for black bear hunting; and hunting in general, are likely to oppose the proposal.
The anticipated economic consequences of the proposal are positive. The reduction in bait placement distance restrictions will enable tourist outfitters that provide bear hunting services to better plan and manage their operations for clients.
This proposal does not impose any new administrative costs for business.
May 1, 2019
Summary of Proposal:
Ontario is home to a healthy black bear population that contributes to the province's biodiversity and provides social and economic benefits to Ontarians. In 2016, the ministry introduced restrictions on the placement of bait (organic matter that may attract a bear) for black bear hunting.
Under the current regulations bait must not be placed within:
500 metres of a dwelling, unless written permission is obtained from the owner of the dwelling.
500 metres of a public building (includes any building open to the public or to which the public may be admitted, including both commercial and non-commercial establishments).
200 metres of a right of way for public vehicular traffic.
200 metres of a recreational trail established and maintained by an organization for the general public and that is reasonably sign posted and marked as at trail.
The ministry has heard concerns expressed by some groups and members of the public that the 200 metre bait placement restrictions from recreational trails and rights of way is overly restrictive and unclear.
To respond to these concerns, the ministry is proposing regulatory changes to reduce the minimum distance for bait placement from a right of way for public vehicular traffic and marked recreational trails from 200 metres to 30 metres.
There is no change proposed to the existing 500 metre bait placement restriction from dwellings and public buildings.
Public Input Coordinator
Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry
Species Conservation Policy Branch
300 Water Street
May 1, 2020