SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A new California law banning the use of dogs in bear hunting appears to have had a dramatic effect, with fewer bears killed by hunters in 2013 than in any other year over the past two decades.
The Sacramento Bee reports that hunters killed 1,002 bears in California in 2013, a 48-percent decline from the number killed in 2012.
California has about 33,000 bears, which are both a symbol of the state's rugged past and a nuisance and danger to people in more rural areas.
People who supported the ban on dogs said the practice is unsportsmanlike, and gives hunters an unfair advantage over bears.
But opponents of the law said hounding helped hunters control the bear population and resulted in fewer attacks on people.
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