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Settlement allows Lynn Rogers to continue bear research, for now

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Nationally-acclaimed Ely bear researcher Lynn Rogers will be allowed to continue his research after a settlement between Rogers and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Monday.

MPR reports the agreement allows Rogers to keep collars on 10 bears, but he is banned from using live web cams in bear dens.

Rogers can also continue his controversial practice of hand-feeding the animals with some added restrictions, which the Pioneer Press describes as "a sharp curtailing."

Rogers, 72, has studied bears for nearly half a decade and has held a DNR permit to conduct research at his Ely research center since 1999. Rogers uses radio-transmitter tracking collars and den webcams to collect his data.

The DNR says Rogers' methods have caused the animals to lose their fear of humans and become a public safety threat to nearby residents. Last month, the state agency said it would not renew Rogers permit and ordered him to remove collars and shut down cameras by July 31.

Rogers took the case to court and filed a lawsuit in Ramsey County last week for a restraining order against the DNR's decision.

Monday's settlement approved by Judge John Guthmann provided temporary reprieve, but the the DNR still wants to revoke Rogers' research permit.

The case is expected to go before a state administrative law judge in the next six to nine months for further consideration, MPR says.

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