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Environmentalists Dispute Florida Bear Hunt will Limit Kills to 320

Heather Paul via Flickr

Environmentalists suing the state over the upcoming bear hunt are urging a judge to step in and stop the hunt before it starts next month. Speak Up Wekiva and activist Chuck O'Neal filed the motion in Leon County.

The motion disputes the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission's claim that hunt rules will limit the number of slain bears to 320, pointing to a rule allowing hunters to kill an unlimited number of bears in the first two days of the hunt. That, they say, doesn’t protect the bears from over harvesting. The motion points out hunters are required to report their kills within 12 hours, making way for a window in which the quota has been met but the data not yet gathered.

Florida Fish and Wildlife says wildlife authorities will monitor the hunt closely and end it early when the quota is met.

The state agency says hunter success in other states has been low. The motion claims more than 2-thousand hunting licenses have been issued, and the hunt is poised to draw more hunters than there are bears in the state.

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