(WTNH) – Connecticut is seeing a spike in bear sightings and it could be dangerous to both the animal population and people. Now, several lawmakers are pushing for a bear hunting season.

Connecticut has seen an increase in bear sightings over the last decade, and last year alone, there were nearly 11,000 reported sightings.

Tammy Nuccio represents Connecticut’s 53rd District and is proposing a bill that’s two-fold. First, it would ban feeding bears.

“They’re really cute and they’re really great, but when we’re feeding them and stuff, we’re creating an environment that’s not safe for them and not safe for us,” Nuccio said.

She says that’s because bears then become dependent on people for food.

“When their numbers get really high like that, then they’re scavenging for food and they’re looking for active ways to get it,” Nuccio said.

The second half of Nuccio’s bill would create a limited bear hunting season. It’s currently illegal to hunt or trap bears in Connecticut.

“It would be very targeted, and it would be a limited season, and it would be only appointed at areas where we’re really starting to see an impact from the bear population,” Nuccio explained.

Karen Reddington-Hughes represents the state’s 66th House District and is proposing another bill that would create a lottery for hunters in northwestern Connecticut where she says there have been hundreds of reported incidents within a year.

“If you were counting all of the animals and the crops and the home entries, you’re looking at probably over 100 incidents,” Reddington-Hughes said.

These leaders say any limited season or lottery would be organized by Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. DEEP says they’ve supported a limited bear hunt in the past and would do so again, while also backing a ban on feeding dangerous wildlife.