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Researchers interested in studying bear dens

Minnesota black bear researchers are interested in any information the public may have about presently occupied bear dens in northwestern Minnesota. Since 2007, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the University of Minnesota have been conducting a cooperative bear study in Kittson, Marshall, Pennington and Red Lake counties.

"We would appreciate it if folks with information about denning bears within this study area this year would contact us," said Dave Garshelis, DNR bear project leader. "The further west the den is located, the better. We might be interested in radio-collaring the bear."

There are approximately 20,000 black bears in Minnesota, the only species of bear in the state. Bears hibernate in dens during winter for as long as six or seven months, usually leaving the den in early April.

People who know of any denning black bear in the study area should call Dave Garshelis in Grand Rapids at 218-327-4146.