Suit says the state allows bear hunts using banned methods

(AP) - A conservation group has sued Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, alleging it illegally allows black bears to be killed using hunting methods that were banned by voters.

  

The lawsuit filed Thursday in Thurston County Superior Court says the agency exploits narrow exceptions to two voter-approved initiatives to allow hunters to use bait, dogs and traps to kill bears on private commercial timberland.

  

The Center for Biological Diversity says the state reportedly authorizes black bears to be killed to prevent them from stripping tree bark to eat sapwood, but that the program instead allows hunters to indiscriminately kill the animals.

  

A WDFW spokesman said the agency just received the petition and won't comment at this stage.

  

According to the lawsuit, the state has authorized about 900 black bears to be killed since 2010 using bait, dogs and traps.

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5/31/2018 2:59:02 PM (GMT -7:00)

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