TRENTON - (AP) - New Jersey's bear hunt could be expanded.

The New Jersey Fish and Game Council on Tuesday approved adding an October hunt, expanding the geographic area of the hunt and increasing the number of bears hunters can claim.

The policy must be approved by the Environmental Protection Department's commissioner and would be subjected to a 60-day public comment period.

The new policy authorizes another hunt in December. Next year, two hunts would be held, one in October and one in December.

This year, hunting will be permitted in all of Hunterdon, Somerset and Morris counties, plus small parts of Passaic and Mercer counties.

While nearly 2,000 bears have been killed in the last five hunts, the DEP says bear-human interactions increased by 60 percent last year.