The Vermont Statutes Online
Conservation and Development
WILD ANIMALS DOING DAMAGE
4827. Black bear doing damage
(a)(1) Except as
provided in subdivision (2) of this subsection and in subsection 4827a(b) of
this title, a person, an authorized member of the person's family, or the
person's authorized regular on-premise employee may, after attempting
reasonable nonlethal measures to protect his or her property, take on land
owned or occupied by the person a bear which he or she can prove was doing
damage to the following:
(A) livestock, a
pet, or another domestic animal;
(B) bees or bee
(C) a vehicle,
building, shed, or any dwelling; or
(D) a crop or
crop-bearing plant other than grass.
requirements of subdivision (1) of this subsection shall not apply in exigent
circumstances. As used in this subdivision, "exigent circumstances"
means the need for immediate protection of a person, livestock, pet, domestic
animal, or occupied dwelling.
or lessees subject to bear damage in unharvested cornfields shall be exempt
from having to first use nonlethal control measures prior to taking a black
bear doing damage under subdivision (a)(1) of this section.
(b) A person
authorized to take a bear under subsection (a) of this section may designate
one individual who holds a resident Vermont hunting license as an agent to take
a bear doing damage on his or her behalf. The person may not offer or accept
any form of payment to or from the agent under this subsection except as
allowed in subsection (e) of this section.
(c) A person who
wounds or kills a bear pursuant to this section shall immediately report the
wounding or killing to a game warden. Within 12 hours of the wounding or
killing, the person who performed the act shall submit a written, signed report
relating the date, time, place, and reason for the wounding or killing to a
(d) A person who
kills a bear under this section shall immediately properly dress the carcass
and care for the meat.
(e) The game
warden shall immediately investigate the case and if satisfied that the bear
was taken as provided in this section, the warden shall give the person who
owns or occupies the land a certificate of his or her finding in the matter.
The certificate shall entitle the person who owns or occupies the land to the
ownership of the carcass. However, the person may not sell or give away the
carcass except to offer all or a portion of it to an agent designated under
subsection (b) of this section as compensation for killing the bear. Any
carcass not desired for home consumption in the household of the certificate
holder or designated agent shall be turned over to a game warden.
Commissioner is authorized to issue an order requiring a person to contain food
which has the effect of luring a bear onto property owned or occupied by the
person. In this subsection, food does not include a crop, a crop bearing plant,
or livestock. The order shall include specific measures which would constitute
containing the food and the date by which the food shall be contained.
Containing food means to prevent a bear from having access to the food.
Following issuance of an order under this subsection, a person who fails to
contain the food may not shoot a bear causing damage pursuant to this section.
However, if the person contains the food and a bear continues to do damage
pursuant to subsection (a) of this section, 30 days or more after containment,
the person may take the bear pursuant to this section.
(h) A person who
shoots a bear in violation of subsection (g) of this section or subsection
4827a(b) of this title may be fined up to $2,000.00. A person who does not
remove bait or contain food following an order issued under subsection (g) of
this section or subsection 4827a(b) may be fined up to $1,000.00. (Added 1961,
No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 2003, No. 99 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff.
April 27, 2004; 2013, No. 78, § 16.)