Applications for bear hunting licenses are being accepted now through Friday, May 4, wherever Minnesota hunting and fishing licenses are sold, online at mndnr.gov/buyalicense, and by telephone at 888-665-4236.
A total of 3,350 licenses are available in 13 permit areas. Bear licenses cost $44 for residents and $230 for nonresidents, and there is a $5 application fee. The season is open from Saturday, September 1, through Sunday, October 14.
Notification to lottery winners will be made by Friday, June 1. The deadline to purchase licenses awarded by lottery will be on Wednesday, August 1. Any remaining unpurchased licenses will be available over the counter starting at noon on Monday, August 6.
An unlimited number of bear licenses will be sold over-the-counter for the no-quota area that includes east-central and far northwestern Minnesota. No-quota licenses are valid only in the no-quota area. Hunters with a no-quota license can harvest one bear.
Bear license numbers in the quota area are unchanged from the 2017 season. The current level of bear permit numbers for quota areas is to allow bear population numbers to gradually increase and support a robust bear population. The 2016 bear season harvest was higher than expected as a result of poor natural food availability. Hunters in the quota area had the second highest record (46 percent) success rate in 2017, while the no-quota area continues to see a high number of licenses sold.
Bear hunting information is available on the DNR website at mndnr.gov/hunting/bear.