The mountain lion hunting season in the Black Hills closed Wednesday after 40 lions were reported killed for the 2010 season –- the limit set by the state Department of Game, Fish & Parks.
GF&P reported 24 females and 16 males were harvested this season, which opened Jan. 1 and would have run until March 31 had the season limit not been reached.
The final five lions reported killed Wednesday were three females and two males, killed near Wonderland Cave, Johnson Siding, Harney, Rochford and Sturgis.
The GF&P commission raised the limit in July from 35 in the previous season to 40 total lions for this year’s hunt on the recommendation of state biologists, who also recommended raising the sub-quota of total females that could be killed to 25, up from 15 the previous season. Biologists believe the lion population in the Hills averages about 250 animals annually.