Prospective MInnesota bear hunters have until May 1 to apply for a bear hunting license. Applications for the 2020 season should be submitted at or at 888-665-4236.

A total of 3,575 licenses are available in 13 permit areas. Bear licenses cost $44 for residents and $230 for nonresidents, and there is a $5 application fee. The season is open from Sept. 1 to Oct. 18.

Lottery winners will be notified by June 1. The deadline to purchase licenses awarded by lottery will be Aug. 1. Any remaining licenses will be available over the counter starting at noon Aug. 5. An unlimited number of bear licenses will also be sold over-the-counter for the no-quota area that includes east-central and far northwestern Minnesota.

The number of available bear permits is increasing modestly in the southern and western portion of bear management areas. In other areas, bear permit numbers for quota areas remain mostly unchanged this year, at a relatively low level, to allow bear population numbers to gradually increase.