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florida bear problem

41 cal41 cal MemberPosts: 97 Member
Since bears in Fla. are protected, and it seems they know it, we have at least six bears, pics taken on trail cams, being pigs at our feeders. We had to suspend them between trees to keep the bears from ripping motors and such from the bottom of the feeders. This is getting expensive, corn and repairs, so we are trying to find a way to stop the bears. I have seen bee keepers surround their hives with some kind of electric fence, powered by car batteries I think, and am wondering if we try this will it also keep deer out or will they jump the wire and feed. This area doesn't have many deer and we are trying to establish a safe zone to get some to stay in the area. Hunting allowed outside the zone roughly two 15 acre mostly wooded sand pines. Any suggestions that we may try would be appreciated.
I was always taught to respect my elders, but its getting harder to find one ...

Replies

  • CHIRO1989CHIRO1989 Senior Member Posts: 12,622 Senior Member
    Are your feeders on your property? If bears are being destructive in MN, wrecking your property, then they are dealt with by the DNR, they get to go for a truck ride.
    I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn away from their ways and live. Eze 33:11
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 16,916 Senior Member
    Go down to your local tractor supply, they've got all the stuff you need....get a fence charger for large hairy critter...mount the wire low, deer will step over it, make sure you clear all the grass, weeds etc so the system won't ground out...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • woodsrunnerwoodsrunner Senior Member Posts: 2,725 Senior Member
    You are faced with more problems than you realize, and I hate to tell you this. First off, the deer population: The sand pine barrens in your area has the lowest carrying capacity for deer in the state at around one deer per every 40 acres. get on up north around Madison/Tallahassee/Quincy in the Plantation Belt and the carrying capacity jumps to about one deer per every 20 acres or less, and there are some areas with a carrying capacity of one per eight-ten acres. But all this is beside the point of your question, It simply hurts your overall efforts to have a successful deer harvest. Also, the deer in your area are the physically smallest in the state other than the tiny Keys Deer. Now about your bear problem.

    Just got off the phone with one of my colleagues who is a little more into wildlife/bear management than I. Wanted to get his opinion of what I want to tell you. So....

    You can keep the bear out of your food plot/feeding area with an electric fence as you described ie battery powered. But you're going to have to have a series of wires, ground/hot, ground/hot, ground/hot, at least three sets up to about 40 inches off the dirt. Bear have a soft foot pad with hair and this gives them some insulation from the ground. The three ground/hot wire setup will overcome this. Deer have hooves that are in contact with the dirt, well grounded, and a single hot wire will knock hell out of them. They may learn to jump over the three wire set-up at 40 or so inches, but most probably they won't or will not do this. I keep deer out of my small farm area with a single hot wire 30 inches off the ground with an occasional glob of peanut butter on a few of the insulators. Works like a charm, and I'm afraid the wire setup around your feeders will have the same effect. The best that you can do, in my opinion, is to rig the feeders up high, 12 feet or more, between trees where the bears can't get to them. But they will probably learn quickly to climb the tree and tear the wire down to get to the feeders. You may end up having to rig the three hot/ground setup around the tree to keep them off.

    Florida has a black bear problem, and nothing has or will be done about it. These bears can be dangerous and will kill you, so don't mess around with them.
  • HAWKENHAWKEN Senior Member Posts: 1,720 Senior Member
    I certainly understand your bear problem. A few years ago, I drew a three day tag, in the Ocala National Forest, during muzzleloader season. I set up a ground blind, in the corner of a clear cut. At about 9AM, I saw a very large black bear, scent trailing me, towards where I sat. When I realized that it was a bear, and not a hog, I reached down into my pack, to retrieve my camera. It saw me move, and scurried off into the woods. Thank God! After contiplating the wisom of sitting in the baliwick of a, possibly hungry, or angry bear, with only one shot available, I packed up, and left. Besides, I rationalized that since the bear was in the area, there would not be any deer, in the area. On the way home, I stopped at the Bass Pro Shop, in Orlando, and bought a .44 caliber, stainless, Traditions, 1860 New Army, revolver. From now on, I would have 7 shots available....Robin
    I don't often talk to people that voted for Obama, but when I do I order large fries!
    Life member of the American Legion, the VFW, the NRA and the Masonic Lodge, retired LEO
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 22,394 Senior Member
    This bear problem is merely a symptom of a larger more serious problem, the invasion of your state by Bunny Huggers. I believe in conservation but not to the point of everybody having to do cartwheels to accommodate a species. If I had a say, which of course I don't, I say shoot em. Lower the numbers to a point where the bears are not a problem.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • FisheadgibFisheadgib Senior Member Posts: 5,797 Senior Member
    snake284 wrote: »
    This bear problem is merely a symptom of a larger more serious problem, the invasion of your state by Bunny Huggers. I believe in conservation but not to the point of everybody having to do cartwheels to accommodate a species. If I had a say, which of course I don't, I say shoot em. Lower the numbers to a point where the bears are not a problem.


    Initially it was a campaign by the state to allow the black bears to recover to some imaginary level just like the red snapper. Now they've recovered so well that they've become a nuisance and so far the state refuses to allow a limited harvest. They could issue a handfull of tags in the areas where they're really a problem like down around Chipley. I've had some friends give up their deer leases around there because the bears kept tearing up their stands and feeders. As for trying to run them off or shooting them, the punishment for harming a bear is almost greater that the punishment for rape or murder.
    snake284 wrote: »
    For my point of view, cpj is a lot like me
    .
  • woodsrunnerwoodsrunner Senior Member Posts: 2,725 Senior Member
    Need to be a little cautious because many of them are radio tagged, and killing one is 30 days in the electric chair :yikes:
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 22,394 Senior Member
    Yeah woodsrunner, at low voltage, LOL!!!

    Seriously, this is because of what I said. They always say that they just want to get the numbers up, but then when the wildlife is getting to be a nuisance, they still won't let you shoot 'em, because the bunny huggers are whispering in the state official's ears telling them they don't need to shoot poor Yogi.

    Here in Texas they put a limit of 3 between 1" and 30" on Redfish back in 1986 I think. Then a couple years later they tightened the length window to 20-28, where it still is. However, to my surprise and probably due to a lot of public pressure, they have since given us a couple of oversize fish tags for them. That surprised me, but thinking about it TPWD has done that, though most probably due to pressure by those with lots of money. For instance, when aligators got to be a pest they opened up a limited season on them.

    For you guys in Florida, all I have to say is there is strength in numbers. Unite and hound the legislature about this. In texas we don't have the numbers of libtards elsewhere. But we have enough of them that we have to work at it to get what we want.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 22,394 Senior Member
    Sorry, miss print and I still have trouble with my edit post button. When I said the parks and wildlife put a limit on Redfish of 1-30 inches I meant 18-30 inches.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,493 Senior Member
    BTW, it's the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) that sets hunting and fishing rules in Florida, not the legislature. If people feel that worked up, they need to contact their FWC commissioners to try and get initiatives considered. Also, when the FWC gives an invite for public dialogue either at meetings for for the rules review, people should show up and speak, or write in.
    Overkill is underrated.
  • 41 cal41 cal Member Posts: 97 Member
    Thanks guys for the input. We may try electric wire the 3 setup on one feeder to see results. Ten years ago one couldn't even bring up a bear hunt for fla. with the FWC, way to many huggers, but recently FWC has kind of thrown it out there. I consider that a big step to maybe getting permits for nuisance bears. None of us could shoot them as even though they are getting expensive to have around, we wouldn't do that for the ethics involved. Woodsrunner is right as there aren't big populations, we are hoping that locally with some acres kept in crops, locally it may be a little better. Over the last 20 years, the deer take average is only slightly more than 2 per year with 3 hunters. As an aside the problem with the bunny huggers is bad just look at how little lands are control burned here.
    I was always taught to respect my elders, but its getting harder to find one ...
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    Deer jump- - - -bears don't. Surround your feeders with sheets of 3/4" plywood with several rows of upward-facing of 20D nails spaced 3" apart in all directions. Unless your bears down there can make a 48" leap with all four feet, the feeders will be pretty much bearproof, while the deer will simply jump over the spikes and feed as usual.
    Jerry
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 22,394 Senior Member
    BTW, it's the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) that sets hunting and fishing rules in Florida, not the legislature. If people feel that worked up, they need to contact their FWC commissioners to try and get initiatives considered. Also, when the FWC gives an invite for public dialogue either at meetings for for the rules review, people should show up and speak, or write in.

    It's the same here in Texas, my bad. I was spot on and went to sleep at the wheel. TPWD is very powerful. Maybe too powerful in some peoples opinion. However, since Parks and Wildlife is making the decisions on this I guess it's better than leaving it in the hands of lawmakers that know nothing of Biology and conservation. So yes, people need to put the pressure on the FWC.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,493 Senior Member
    FWC has decisions made by the commissioners, who are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the state senate. The decisions are made based on recommendations of the biologists and the public through working groups and meeting input and petitions. Evidently this is how folks want it, as it was the system set up by voters as a state constitutional amendment. About the only way the legislature gets involved is they have to approve license and stamp fees (they're viewed as taxes) and they control how much money the state gets for employee pay and overall agency budget.
    Overkill is underrated.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    Getting the state legislature involved in game law writing can be, and usually is a disaster. A bunch of Tennessee good ole boy politicians with guns have been passing "private acts" that give special perks to **** hunters in specific areas of east Tennessee for decades. They carve out special regulations for their favorite hunting areas with little or no regard for the wildlife experts' opinions, just because they happen to like to hear a pack of dogs run.
    Jerry
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