COLUMBIA — The Humane Society probably isn’t used to praising an organization that supports hunters.
But on Feb. 25, the group recognized Col. Chisolm Frampton of the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources for efforts to end the illegal practice of using captive bears, usually toothless, declawed and chained, in the training of hunting dogs.
Frampton was awarded the Humane Law Enforcement Award. The practice of “bear-baying” involves removing a bear’s teeth and claws and chaining it.
DNR’s four-year undercover investigation resulted in the removal and relocation of six captive bears in late 2013.
DNR law enforcement officers made more than 50 arrests on related charges in conjunction with the state Attorney General’s office. Seven arrests were announced in August. Examples of violations, besides bear baiting, include killing an undersized bear, killing a sow with her cubs, trespassing, and wildlife management land abuse.
In November three black bear siblings were set free after being rehabilitated. Prior to release, the cubs had spent eight months at a Tennessee bear rescue facility.