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Officials Look to Open Grizzly Hunt

Considering Yellowstone and Glacier

With grizzly populations on the rebound in Yellowstone and Glacier National Parks, federal officials are considering lifting protections on the threatened species. As early as 2014, officials are considering transferring authority over the estimated 1,600 bears in Glacier and Yellowstone to individual states, who have expressed interest in opening a hunt to reduce the rising incidence of bear-human encounters. But officials insist that the hunt would not be as aggressive as the controversial wolf hunts that were recently introduced to the area.

“The wolf hunt is really targeted at reducing the number of wolves,” said Chris Servheen, a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service grizzly bear recovery coordinator. “We’re not trying to reduce the bear population anywhere. ... It would be a very careful, limited hunt.”

The Greater Yellowstone Coalition opposes opening the hunt while the number of bears killed annually remains high; 51 bears have been killed so far this year, mostly as a result of habituation to humans or run-ins with hunters.

Via Washington Post

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Filed To: News