Black bear researcher Lynn Rogers has filed suit against the DNR. He's asking a judge in Ramsey County District Court to issue a temporary restraining order to keep the agency from forcing him to remove collars on about a dozen bears he's researching.
The DNR informed Rogers at the end of June that it would not renew his research permit, and told him to remove the collars by July 31.
Rogers met with Gov. Dayton Monday. But Rogers said in an interview Tuesday that Dayton and the DNR don't understand bears and don't understand his research.
"We need an investigation," Rogers said. "If anybody knowledgeable looks at this, I think truth will win in the end."
Rogers says with new GPS technology and web-cams, his research is more fruitful now than any other time in his long career.
The DNR has repeatedly told Rogers his practice of hand-feeding bears in his study area near Ely is habituating bears to humans, creating a public safety issue.
"And by habituation I mean, bears in that area now view humans as a source of food," said DNR spokesman Chris Niskanen. "We've certainly heard from citizens in the Eagles Nest area, who've told us they don't feel safe around the bears that are now viewing them as a source of food."
The DNR also maintains Rogers has not published enough to justify continuing his research permit.
Rogers said he has published reports and is in constant demand to speak at conferences. He said his cameras in bear dens are educating people worldwide.