Bears in New Jersey have a reprieve, for now. This is not an animal-rights victory; it is simply an opinion that the Fish & Game Council have yet to implement a proper Code under which they may permit hunting as a method to control the bears ’ population. New Jersey is the most heavily populated state in the U.S. — by humans. No word on how New Jersey is addressing that… In any case, here’s a copy of the opinion that keeps bear-hunters at bay this season:
U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance vs. NJ Dept. of Environmental Protection(pdf)
For background, here is the original action alert which was issued by Friends of Animals:
The state of New Jersey will again allow a bear hunt on December 6, 2004 unless Governor Richard J. Codey intervenes to call it off. The governor has publicly opposed the hunt, but the state Department of Environmental Protection is influenced by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, and the people who have their ear at trophy hunting groups.
The bear shoot has been actively opposed by DEP Commissioner Bradley Campbell, who had refused to issue permits until losing a lawsuit filed by Safari Club International and other hunting organizations.
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, New Jersey estimates 1,600 bears in the state. Last year, the state organized its first public bear hunt in 33 years, whereby 328 bears were killed in six days.