East Tennessee Outdoors… Outdoor News for Week of September 27, 2020

Published 1:42 pm Thursday, September 24, 2020

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It’s finally here! The first day of fall was Tuesday and the first day of Tennessee’s deer archery season is this Saturday. In some ways the deer season came upon us fast, but in others it seems that 2020 has been five years long.

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Dust off your bow and your camo, shoot a few arrows and sight in your bow and set the alarm for an early wake-up Saturday morning. The opening day of deer season only comes once a year!

With that said, let’s look at the news for the week.

Bear Euthanized

Once again, the bear population is making their presence known in Tennessee. Bear encounters with humans are on the rise, and so far this year, three bears have had to be euthanized because of these encounters.

A bear is considered a nuisance bear when they repeatedly get in trash or when they become dangerous to a human.  The TWRA will tell you a feed bear is a dead bear.

No, they are not the cute, cuddly creatures that act like Yogy Bear from the cartoon. These are wild creatures, and they can be dangerous.

They need to be treated like the wild animals they are. Do not feed them nor try to get close to them to get a photo.

When a bear gets used to humans, they are a very dangerous bear.

In this case there are only two options for the bear. It will either be caught and relocated or it will have to be euthanized.

Remember, all of this could be changed by avoiding the bear and not trying to feed him.

Deer Season 2020

There have been several changes to this year’s deer seasons. Some of the changes have been made to help the state stop the spread of Chronic Waste Disease, CWD, in the state.

According to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, Chronic Waste Disease has been confirmed in three counties in Tennessee, and biologists are trying to keep it out of the rest of the state.

Chronic Waste can wipe out an entire deer herd and is usually brought into the state when hunters discard deer carcasses from other states.

There is also a ban on the importing of deer from other states, unless the meat has been cut from the bone and wrapped.

For more information on Chronic Waste Disease in Tennessee, pick up a copy of the TWRA’s Hunting/Trapping Guide for 2020 or go to TWRA.gov.

Tennessee Archery Season

The Tennessee archery season opens on Saturday, September 26, 2020, and will last until October 30, 2020. The daily limit is three deer per day, and the season limit is four does and two bucks.

You are also allowed to take a bear that weighs over 75 pounds during this archery hunt. This special bear hunt will also begin on September 26, 2020, and last until October 23, 2020.

The limit on bears is one bear per year.

Big Game Tag and Drag

If you are able to kill a deer, it must be tagged before you drag it out of the woods. You can do this by using your cell phone or internet service and report the kill directly to TWRA.

If you are able to kill a black bear, it must be physically checked-in at a big game check-in station. Pick up a copy of TWRA’s Hunting/Trapping guide to find a check-in station near you.

The first day of deer season has always been a special time for me and hunters across the state.

Take advantage of it and get out and enjoy our mountains. You may even get to fill your freezer as well.