“Bear Whisperer” Host Charged with Poaching in National Park

Reality TV personality Harvey Neil Anthony, who professionally goes by Blaine Anthony and is known for his show “The Bear Whisperer,” faces federal poaching charges after shooting a bear in Kenai Fjords National Park and airing it on his show.

He and his production company, Nature Productions, Inc., face misdemeanor charges that carry up to a year in prison and a maximum fine of $100,000 per individual and $200,000 per organization. Anthony is due in court on June 10, according to The Daily Beast. 

Anthony violated the Lacey Act and then lied on official paperwork about the location of the kill, according to a criminal complaint. From 2011 to 2019, he participated in eight hunting trips to the Kenai Peninsula hunting targeting black bears. In 2017, he allegedly killed a black bear in Pilot Harbor, which is within the Kenai Fjords National Park. Hunting there is illegal. 

The “Whisperer” is accused of following in the footsteps of Ted Nugent, who pleaded guilty in 2012 to illegally killing a black bear in Alaska, later airing the footage on his own television show.

Posted by The Daily Beast on Monday, May 9, 2022

After killing the bear and filming it, the team transported the bear to Homer, Alaska, via boat. Anthony filed documentation with state officials claiming the bear was taken in Berger Bay, roughly 19 miles away from the actual kill site. Berger Bay does allow hunting.

Footage of the poaching, disguised as a legal hunt, allegedly aired on his show “The Bear Whisperer.” The show also reportedly showed footage of a second illegally taken black bear from another hunting trip. Anthony was accompanied by an Alaska resident known as Individual A in the complaint. That person allegedly helped him transport the bear. It is unclear who this person is and the extent of their role based on the complaint.

Read Next: Every Hunter Should Know What the Lacey Act Is, How It Works, and Why It’s On the Books

The Lacey Act was enacted in 1900. It bans the trafficking of wildlife that has been unlawfully taken or transported. According to the criminal complaint, Anthony did both of those things.

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