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DNR asks hunters not to shoot radio-collared bears

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Wildlife managers are asking hunters not to shoot radio-collared bears during Minnesota's bear hunting season, which opens Thursday.

Department of Natural Resources researchers are monitoring about 35 radio-collared black bears, mostly in northwestern Minnesota. Bear research also is being conducted in St. Louis County of northeastern Minnesota.

The collared bears have large colorful ear tags or colorful streamers. It's not illegal for hunters to take them because the tags sometimes can be hard to spot, but bear biologist Dave Garshelis is urging hunters to refrain from shooting them. He says researchers have invested an enormous amount of time and expense in these bears, and they provide valuable long-term data.

Any hunters who do shoot collared bears should call the DNR Wildlife Research office in Grand Rapids at 218-327-4146 or 218-327-4133.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.

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