The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources is proposing to expand the number of permits and areas in which black bears can be hunted in the state.
DWR Mammals Coordinator Leslie McFarlane said the number of black bears in Utah has more than doubled since the 1990s.
“We estimate that we’ve got about 4,100 bears, if not probably a little more than that, and most of them live in our mountainous areas of the state,” McFarlane said.
The increase in the bear population has led to more conflict with both people and livestock. The DWR says in an average year 50 bears are euthanized after coming into contact humans and animals; however, in 2014 that number increased to 81 bears.