The National Elk Refuge is hosting a bear spray giveaway event next week, sponsored by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department and several sportsman’s organizations. The bear spray will be distributed on Thursday, September 20 at no cost to anyone possessing a Wyoming hunting or fishing license. According to Dusty Lasseter, Bear Wise Wyoming Coordinator for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, 100 cans of the deterrent will be given away on a first come, first served basis. The event will take place beginning at 8:00 a.m. in the parking lot of the Jackson Hole & Greater Yellowstone Visitor Center, located at 532 N. Cache Street in Jackson.
The event is part of an effort to raise awareness and safety for those hunting or fishing in bear country this fall. In addition to receiving a free canister of bear spray, participants will have the opportunity to practice with inert training cans and talk with local large carnivore biologists. This is the third year the Refuge has hosted the popular event.
To receive a free can of bear spray, hunters must show a current Wyoming hunting or fishing license and take a short survey to help evaluate educational efforts that promote bear awareness and reduce the potential for conflicts between humans and grizzly bears.
The bear spray that will be distributed free of charge to the public was purchased through donations from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Wyoming Outdoorsmen, and the Western Bear Foundation. Once the complimentary cans of bear spray are handed out, additional cans will be for sale inside the visitor center in the Grand Teton Association’s retail outlet store.
For further information, please contact the Wyoming Game and Fish Department’s Jackson regional office at (307) 733-2321.