Hunters in Estonia have nearly met their seasonal quota by slaughtering 72 brown bears since the beginning of August.
The culling season runs the three months from August to October.
Hunters are permitted to kill up to 82 individual bears for the bulk of the season, while the Environmental Board (Keskonnaamet) may announce a further allowance depending on bear activity.
The limit has already been reached In Ida-Viru, Järva, Jõgeva, Lääne-Viru, Pärnu. Põlva, Tartu, and Võru counties, BNS reports.
In Hajru County, five bears have been killed, leaving a quota of two remaining, while in Viljandi County the respective figures are three and four.
In Rapla County, three bears have been killed out of a quota of five, and in Valga County, one bear has been killed from a quota of three.
In Lääne County, the quota of one bear culling has yet to be fulfilled.
No limits have been set so far on Estonia's two largest islands, Saaremaa and Hiiumaa, though BNS reports one bear has been killed on the latter island.
The number of bears in Estonia has risen slightly to 1,000, from around 950 last year.
Hunters slaughtered 93 bears last hunting season, which was the permitted quota.
Editor: Andrew Whyte