SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WV News) — West Virginia hunters harvested a record 3,541 black bears during the 2020 archery and firearms seasons, according to preliminary numbers gathered by the state Division of Natural Resources.
According to a press release, the 2020 harvest is more than the previous record of 3,201 black bears taken during the 2015 seasons and a 14 percent increase over the 3,099 bears taken in 2019. West Virginia hunters have taken more than 3,000 black bears in five out of the last six years.
Hunters killed 1,095 bears during the first segment of the 2020 archery/crossbow season (Sept. 26 to Nov. 22). Hunters harvested 569 bears with vertical bows and 526 bears with crossbows. The top five counties were Fayette (76), Nicholas (59), Raleigh (55), Preston (55) and Boone (53).
“We saw increased harvest numbers during the September/October and bow/crossbow seasons and then numbers decreased slightly during the buck-gun and December seasons,” said Colin Carpenter, black bear project leader for the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources…