One of the biggest battles at the California state Capitol two years ago is back for another debate. Hunting groups want to repeal the ban on using dogs to hunt bears and bobcats.
Dozens of people wearing bright orange shirts rallied outside the Capitol about an issue they say is at the heart of their livelihood.
“We have to get it back! Not just for the ecosystem; not just because scientifically it’s the only way for wildlife to thrive properly; we have to get it back for Red Top,” said 24-year-old Sara Thompson of Fresno, recalling a houndsman who recently passed away.
Jennifer Fearing with the Humane Society of the United States says there’s absolutely no reason to overturn the ban. “I would encourage them to provide for you a single scientific report that supports either the need or desire to have hounds chasing after animals in the woods,” Fearing said.
This year’s measure would allow counties to set their own rules in place of a statewide ban. It’s up for a committee hearing next week.