Tags : :
"When he went hunting on the second day of bear season, Lackawanna County resident Daniel Beavers found himself reaching for his father Jacob's .30-06 rifle instead of his usual choice, a 12-gauge shotgun.
About an hour into the hunt, Beavers fired his now-deceased father's rifle twice at an enormous male black bear, taking down the largest recorded bear in the state so far this season.
The Pennsylvania Game Commission said the bear weighed in at 772 pounds, and Beavers, 49, of Covington Township, said he will find out in two months if the Boone and Crockett Club determines the skull's size is a world record.
Beavers said he sees his prize as a tribute to his father, who taught Beavers to hunt at age 12. The pair went hunting together every year since then.
"We worked together every day in the woods at the family logging business (Beavers Logging & Firewood)," said Beavers.
Beavers said he was close with his dad, and coping with the loss has sometimes been difficult since the elder Beavers died in hospice in February 2012 at age 75.
"I don't know why I decided to take his gun," said Beavers. "I guess I was thinking about him."
Beavers had his eye on that particular bear for four to five years and said "I finally caught up with him in hunting season."
Besides the animal's size, Beavers said he recognized the bear by an unusual white "V" on its chest.
He thought the bear was gone after not seeing the animal for about two years, but Beavers said the black bear approached his group in a marshy area on Monday.
The animal was only the second bear he has ever taken. The last one was a 355-pound bear he shot in 2007.
"I don't know if I'll ever beat that one," Beavers said of his latest kill. "It's big."
According to the state Game Commission, the first two days of the four-day statewide bear season produced a harvest of 2,044 black bears, down slightly from 2,086 during the same period in 2012.
Last year, hunters killed 3,632 bears over four days - the third-largest total in state history. The most kills came in 2011 when hunters took 4,350 bears.
Other Northeastern Pennsylvania residents who bagged sizeable bears included Randy L. Klem of Mountain Top, who killed a 556-pound bear."