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Government

Wildlife Officials Confident Bear Hunt Will Proceed Despite Lawsuit

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Florida wildlife officials are confident the state’s first bear hunt in two decades will move forward despite a lawsuit aimed to stop it. Members of the Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission approved a hunt they say is backed by numbers.

In October, hunters will be allowed to kill 320 of the state’s estimated 3,000 bears. Spokeswoman Diane Eggeman says those figures were approved based on the most recent data from scientists.

Hunters will have access to bears in four areas where the bear population has recovered.“We’ll be keeping daily tallies of the bears that are harvested", said Eggman. "We can close down the hunting season in that unit when its population is reached based on the daily tallies.”

The commission has not prepared a plan in case a judge rules the hunt unconstitutional.