Black bears in Florida surged by 60 percent over 14 years to 4,350 last summer, new data showed Thursday, providing what wildlife officials said were plenty of animals for a controversial bear hunt last October. Florida black bears dwindled to just a few hundred in the 1970s but have rebounded under protections, while continued development has put them on a collision course with people. Wildlife officials cite increasing attacks, car accidents and nuisance calls involving bears, and this week spent eight hours removing a black bear from a southwestern Florida school.
In its preliminary finding, the FDA said it was highly unlikely that humans or animals bitten by female modified mosquitoes would be exposed to synthetic genetic material, and any bites would not be any different from bites made by a wild mosquito. The FDA also found no significant risks that the modified mosquitoes would disperse well beyond the trial area, develop resistance to insecticides or persist in the environment.
When will they be released in Florida? Not anytime soon. The FDA still needs to review public comments on the proposal and may require more documentation from the company before deciding whether to approve the trial, and there is no deadline for this process.