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News Bear hunters: submit bear teeth for age study

If you harvest a black bear this season, please submit a tooth to MassWildlife.
8/26/2022
  • Division of Fisheries and Wildlife

Media Contact for Bear hunters: submit bear teeth for age study

Media Contact, MassWildlife

black bear

Bear tooth collection for age study

MassWildlife collects teeth from harvested bears to determine the age demographics of the harvest. You can contribute to the scientific management of the Massachusetts back bear population. If you'd like to submit a tooth, watch this video guide and follow the instructions below. You will receive a letter in June or July with the age of your bear.

  1. Remove either the left or right premolar (see photo below), the small tooth just behind the canine. Using a small sharp knife, or a sharp ¼-inch wood chisel, slide the blade down the side of the tooth and cut or separate the gum tissue where it sticks to the tooth. Using small needle-nose pliers or the pliers on your multi-tool, wiggle the tooth slightly until you can pull it out of the jawbone and the gum. The root is the most important part; go slow and be careful not to break this very small tooth.
  2. Put the tooth in a small envelope or bag and mark it with your name, mailing address, customer ID number, and confirmation number (or seal number) of your bear. Enclose everything in a mailing envelope and send it to:
    Black Bear Aging, MassWildlife, 1 Rabbit Hill Rd., Westborough, MA 01581.
black bear premolar

Media Contact for Bear hunters: submit bear teeth for age study

Division of Fisheries and Wildlife 

MassWildlife is responsible for the conservation of freshwater fish and wildlife in the Commonwealth, including endangered plants and animals. MassWildlife restores, protects, and manages land for wildlife to thrive and for people to enjoy.
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