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Monday, March 7, 2011 - 11:53am

Bill Would Allow Hunters to Use Bait

State lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow hunting with bait.

Lakeland Rep. Jason Shaw sponsored the measure to eliminate a ban on hunting deer and hogs within 200 yards of a supplemental food source. He said hunters overwhelmingly support the idea.

"This bill simply removes the ‘200 yards and out of sight’ provision that is in current law for supplemental feeding and hunting over such feed," Shaw said.

The bill's opponents argued baiting wildlife promotes unethical hunting and undermines sportsmanship.

Environmental lobbyist Neill Herring says the practice undermines sportsmanship.

"Hunting is based on fair chase,” said Neill Herring, an environmental lobbyist. “I'm not sure what's fair about tricking a dumb animal.”

The bill still must be heard before a state House committee.