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Massive Expansion of Ontario's Spring Bear Hunt

December 2015

Premier Kathleen Wynne wants to re-open a Spring Bear Hunt in Ontario and wants to invite American trophy hunters too.

Hunting black bears will be opened across Ontario and as far south as Kingston and Aurora - just north of Toronto.

It will also be legal to kill nursing female black bears.

Ontario's spring bear hunt was cancelled in 1999 by the Mike Harris govt. because it was considered a cruel and unethical hunt. Sport hunters used bait to attract black bears that had just emerged hungry from hibernation and female mother bears were being killed leaving their young cubs to starve in the woods.

It is the cruelest of hunts - but OK by Premier Kathleen Wynne.

The reasons for re-opening the Spring Bear Hunt are not clear.

Staff from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry have already stated that hunting does not reduce 'nuisance' black bears from wandering into residential areas. The same message was repeated by the government's own advisory committees, Ontario's Environmental Commissioner and the results of a 2-year pilot project that just ended this year have not been publicly released.

At the same time, the Wynne govt. gutted a proactive program called Bear Wise to help communities be Bear Smart by reducing, in part, open garbage that could attract hungry black bears.

We believe Premier Kathleen Wynne is being deceitful.

She is ignoring the real problem and real solutions to reduce human / bear conflicts and instead is pandering to sport hunting outfitters who have complained that they have lost a valuable source of revenue from American Trophy hunters who are willing to pay top dollars to kill black bears.

Special note: many U.S. states do not have a spring bear hunt because it is considered unethical.

What is so sad is that killing vulnerable black bears and abandoning their cubs is being used as an economic tool to bolster a dying and antiquated industry. Killing for money - that's Premier Wynne's idea of an economic action plan.

Please use your voice today to say NO to the Spring Bear Hunt. Please call the Premier's office directly and state that you object to economic initiatives that are reliant on the killing of wildlife for sport and that you support a progressive long-term and non-lethal strategy that resolves human /wildlife conflicts.
Premier Kathleen Wynne 416-325-1941

Please note: The exapnsion of the spring bear hunt is currently a proposal and therefore we need as many voices as possible to register their opposition. The proposed spring bear hunt expansion can be viewed on the Enviromental Bill of Rights Registry (EBR) here: www.ebr.gov.on.ca (EBR Registry Number: 012-5485).

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