Bear Hunting

Bear Hunting Regulations

2020 General Season

General bear season opens concurrently with general deer season in the A, B, C, D, X8, X9A, X9B, X10 and X12 deer hunting zones. In the remaining deer hunting X zones, bear season begins October 10, 2020.

General bear season closes on December 27, 2020, or earlier, if the Department determines that 1,700 bears have been reported taken. This includes bears harvested during the archery season.

The 2020 bear season reported harvest as of December 30 is: 919

A weekly bear harvest update is also available by calling (888) 277-6398 (toll-free).

2020 Archery Season

August 15, 2020 - September 6, 2020

Bag and Possession Limit

One adult bear per hunting license year. Cubs and females accompanied by cubs may not be taken.

link opens in new tab or windowAdditional Regulations - Bear Tag Flyer (PDF)

Mammal Hunting

Regulations for taking big and small game mammals, furbearers and nongame


License Requirements

  • A CA hunting license and bear tag are required for hunting bear
  • If a bear is taken, the bear tag must be validated by a CDFW employee before transporting the bear, except for the purpose of taking it to the nearest CDFW employee authorized to validate the bear tag. If CDFW offices are closed, the bear tag shall be validated within one business day of transporting the bear from the point where taken. The skull must be presented to CDFW within 10 days (link opens in new windowsee tag validation details)
  • Bear tags must be returned, regardless of success

Purchase licenses and tags ONLINE or at a local AGENT.

License and Tag Fees

Valid JULY 1, 2019 through JUNE 30, 2020

Hunting Licenses Fee Description
Resident Hunting License $49.94 Required for any resident 18 years of age or older who takes birds or mammals
Nonresident Hunting License $174.45 Required for any nonresident 18 years of age or older who takes birds or mammals.
Junior Hunting License $13.22 Required for any resident or nonresident less than 18 years of age who takes birds or mammals. To qualify, hunter must be less than 18 years of age at the beginning of the license year (July 1).
Tags Fee Description
Resident Bear Tag $48.34 Resident and nonresident licensed hunters 12 years of age or older at the time of application may purchase one bear tag per license year. Tags are nonrefundable and nontransferable.
Nonresident Bear Tag $309.40

Publications and Forms