Ontario government likely to lose in controversial decision to reintroduce spring bear hunt
In what is likely to be a losing attempt to win rural votes in northern Ontario, the Liberal government of Kathleen Wynne has quietly announced a proposal to allow municipalities to re-instate the controversial spring bear hunt for a trial 2-year period.
The government claims that allowing hunters to kill bears in the spring will be an “effective response to nuisance bear issues in the north.”
Such a statement contradicts all available scientific evidence, including that from the Ministry’s own wildlife biologists and the Nuisance Bear Review Committee, who note that reports of nuisance bear are linked to food supply, not population size or hunting seasons.
Ontario is home to an estimated 75,000 to 100,000 black bears. The spring bear hunt was cancelled in 1999, after staff from the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) revealed that over 270 bear cubs were orphaned each year and left to starve to death as a direct result of the hunt.
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