The number of brown bears protected under the law, which came into force for the first time in the USA in 1975, has increased fourfold to 965.
According to data from Yellowstone National Park, 8 people have died as a result of bear attacks since the park was established in 1872.
However, the death of a woman in a grizzly bear attack near the park in July has sparked debate in the country over the removal of grizzly bears from the “Endangered Species Act”.
Leaders of the states of Idaho, Montana and Wyoming, where the park is located, argue that grizzly bears and humans adapt to each other, so bears do not need to be protected.
Protection on grizzly bears has been lifted twice before
Frank van Manen, who does research on grizzly bears, stated that the number of grizzly bears alive today is much higher than the numbers determined by the US Fish and Wildlife Service.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has lifted protection on grizzly bears in the Yellowstone area twice since 2007. However, as a result of lawsuits filed by animal rights defenders, the protection order was reinstated. Politicians from these states also submitted a bill to Congress to remove bears from the list of protected animals.
A woman walking in Yellowstone National Park at the end of July was killed by a bear attack. Last year, a hiker was killed in a bear attack near the park.
According to the information on the website of the US National Park Service, 44 people have been injured by a grizzly bear attack since 1979, and the probability of a visitor being injured by a grizzly bear is 1 in 2.7 million.