Florida holds hunt to kill 320 bears


Florida is holding its first bear hunt in more than two decades, despite opposition from animal rights campaigners.

The state's Wildlife Conservation Commission is allowing licensed hunters to kill a total of 320 black bears.

It said the aim was to stabilise the growing number of the animals.

But activists said the state should instead focus on waste management and curbing the smell of food in garbage.

More than 200 bears were killed on Saturday. The hunters included a 16-year-old boy who said he fulfilled a dream when he killed an 80kg bear.

The Wildlife Conservation Commission said it issued nearly 4,000 permits to hunters.

"There has been a need to make seasons longer, make them more liberal, because there have been so many predators and they're not as controlled as they should be," said Nick Pinizzotto, president and chief executive officer of the Sportsmen's Alliance.