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Hunting Outlook: May 22, 2008

JACKSON/JOSEPHINE - Hunting pressure on turkeys has slowed and late-season hunters can expect a little flurry of activity among toms looking for those isolated hens. Light calling near roost sites might be the best bet for the rest of the season, which runs through May 31.

Bear hunters are finding that the animals are getting more active now, with high-elevation grassy areas and young timber stands drawing hungry bears' interests. All hunter-killed bears must be checked in at local Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife offices. Early mornings and evenings are the best times as the temperatures begin to increase. Be aware of sows with cubs; it is unlawful to take cubs less than one year old or sows with cubs less than one year old.

Coyotes are abundant this year. Hunters are using predatory calls to get coyotes in range. As spring progresses, more private landowners may allow hunting on their property with upcoming young livestock, but make sure you ask for permission to hunt. While hunting coyotes, be aware of approaching cougars as hunters are having cougars come to their calls.

DOUGLAS - The spring turkey season is winding down and pressure has dropped, but birds remain call-wary. Many gobblers have been taken so far this season. In general, most turkeys are found on or adjacent to low- to mid-elevation private lands associated with oak savannah habitat.

COOS - Bears are becoming active due to the warmer conditions and the time of year. Hunters are reporting seeing bears in clear cuts and on slide areas feeding on grass. The most popular method to hunt bears in spring is spotting them with binoculars and spotting scopes then stalking them.

There is limited opportunity to hunt turkeys in Coos County. Birds are distributed in relation to agricultural lands. The densest populations are generally found in eastern Coos County near agricultural lands.

CENTRAL OREGON - Ground squirrels and marmots have been increasingly active and offer great recreational hunting, largely on private lands. Seek permission before entering private lands to hunt.