PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- A coalition of several animal rights groups kicked off their campaign to end bear-baiting.
The Mainers for Fair Bear Hunting gathered in Portland's Public Library to start a petition drive to get their law on the November 2014 ballot.
Baiting employs the use of junk food to lure bears into hunting traps. The groups say it's not only un-sporting, but it also gives bears a taste for human food, which they then go looking for in more urban areas.
The coalition is trying to get 80-thousand verified signatures by February 3rd.
Groups opposed to the referendum include sportsmen's group and state wildlife officials, who say the hunting methods targeted by the proposed law would actually cause more cases of bears wandering into populated areas.