The press reported a bear killed a hiker on Sept. 22, in Apshawa Preserve in Passaic County, New Jersey. This is a preserve for hiking, bicycling, horseback riding, natural study and fishing. According to the article, five hikers encountered a black bear in the preserve. They attempted to go in different directions to avoid the black bear. After regrouping, they realized Darsh Patel, 22, did not return. West Milford Police found him with claw and bite marks on his body. Police found the bear 30 yards from the body and euthanized it. The area is trails and walkways for outdoor recreation. Wildlife officials report that bears are in all 21 counties of New Jersey. According to the release, people must be very careful with encounters by bears.

I believe this is one more reason we want to believe our state biologists know best. Do we really want to ban the most effective methods of baiting, cable restraints and hounding in the state of Maine? Biologists say no, we do not want to stop it. It is a means of controlling the bear population and their threat to human life. I cannot urge you strongly enough to vote NO on No. 1 in November.

Wallace E. Staples
Woolwich