Tell Florida Governor Rick Scott that a few angry humans are no excuse: "Don't Kill the Bears!"
Last month the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) voted to move ahead with a hunt that would start as early as this October. Environmental Action members have sent thousands of signatures of support and even presented the FWC with $5,000 to support non-lethal management tools like bear proof trash cans and public education.
But the FWC is still moving ahead. But that does not mean that the fight is over to protect the Florida Black Bears. We’re not giving up on the Florida Bears, and neither should you.
There is still one more vote to go this June in Sarasota, FL, and we will be there to stand up for the bears. Our coalition, which includes allies like the Humane Society of the United States and the Animal Recovery Mission, are working with us to plan the next steps to save the Florida Black Bear. We're convinced that the next step is to convince Gov. Rick Scott and Florida Assembly members that hunting is bad for the bears, and bad for Florida's tourism industry. Click here to send them a message: Hunting the Florida Black Bears would be bad news (bears) for the state.
The FWC claims that a recent increase in bear attacks has left them no other choice than to kill the bears in order to protect public safety.1 But FWC is ignoring the fact that bears are only interacting with humans because urban sprawl has pushed more and more homes into their natural habitats. With only 3,000 of these bears left in the state, this is no time to give hunters a license for a bear killing spree.
Not long ago, barely 500 Florida bears were teetering on the brink of extinction. Thanks to conservation efforts, their numbers are increasing. But just because a few bears have had problems with people due to poor trash management, is no reason to open hunting season on all of them. Rather than indicting all the bears, Florida should focus on slowing down urban sprawl that will reduce incidents and allow this lovely species the ability to flourish.
We are getting ready for our last stand to protect these bears. Please stand with us for the bears, so that humans and bears can live together in harmony.
Thanks for taking (Environmental) Action,
Sally and The Environmental Action Bear Club
1. Craig Pittman, Florida may be on a bear hunt in 2015, Tampa Bay TImes, January 21, 2015.