Is Bear Spray (Bear Repellent) Legal in NYS?

A few days ago I set off to discover whether bear repellent (bear spray) is legal in New York.
I discovered that it is legal because it is a registered pesticide with the Department of Environmental Conversation (and the EPA) even though it exceeds the allowable size of a “self defense spray” under New York Penal law section 265.20 and the controlling regulations of the New York State Department of Health at 10 NYCRR 54.3.

However, only those bear repellants registered with the DEC qualify as pesticides. Non-registered bear repellants would violate Penal Law 265 and the Department of Health regulations.

Moreover, self defense sprays that are legal under Penal Law 265 and the Department of Health regulations can only be sold by licensed firearms dealers or pharmacists. Bear sprays registered as pesticides can be sold by anyone, including internet sellers.

The DEC has approved several “bear repellents” as pesticides. The complete list of all approved pesticides can be found here.

http://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/materials_minerals_pdf/pestprod.pdf

The four I found searching the document for “bear” are:

COUNTER ASSAULT BEAR DETERRENT

FRONTIERSMAN BEAR ATTACK DETERRENT

GUARD ALASKA BEAR REPELLENT

UDAP PEPPER POWER BEAR DETERRENT


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