The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) recently voted and approved the state’s new Comprehensive Black Bear Plan. The Sportsmen’s Alliance, along with its Florida members, urged the FWC to keep a black bear hunting season as an option in the management plan.
“We are grateful that the commission put science at the forefront of their decision and included this very effective and important tool in the plan,” said Bruce Tague, vice president government affairs for Sportsmen’s Alliance, noting that the inclusion of hunting as an option does not open a bear hunting season in 2020, but it does preserve the ability of FWC to use hunting as a management tool in the future.
With a thriving population of more than 4,050 bears, Florida has begun to see an increase in bear interactions and attacks on pets and people. In May, two bears attacked and killed a dog in its backyard in Crestview. Another dog was killed in Gulf Breeze in July, and in September, a Seminole County woman was attacked and injured by a bear in Longwood.
“The Sportsmen’s Alliance commends the FWC for understanding the role that hunting plays in the scientific management of wildlife, especially those that can cause serious injury or death to pets and people,” continued Tague. “By keeping a bear hunting season in the management plan, FWC now has an important tool at its disposal that doesn’t cost the taxpayers one dime.”
About the Sportsmen’s Alliance: The Sportsmen’s Alliance protects and defends America’s wildlife conservation programs and the pursuits – hunting, fishing and trapping – that generate the money to pay for them. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation is responsible for public education, legal defense and research. Its mission is accomplished through several distinct programs coordinated to provide the most complete defense capability possible. Stay connected to Sportsmen’s Alliance: Online, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.