Alabama Black Bear Numbers Rising

Alabama Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bear Hunting Magazine

With a number of of bear encounters being reported over the past few months, some wildlife biologists believe that the black bear population is slowly increasing in northeastern Alabama.

At least two people have reported seeing black bears at Cheaha State Park recently and one was hit and killed by a vehicle at Little River Canyon National Preserve in December. In addition, a wildlife camera recently caught an image of a black bear in Piedmont.

The increased number of sightings has prompted research on the black bear population. Even though scientists believe the bear population is increasing, they believe there are still relatively few black bears in the area.

About 20 bears are believed to live in the area of the Little River Canyon National Preserve, which may be a small number, but is up from just a few years ago when biologists believed about half as many bears lived there.

A bear that was killed a few years ago with a tag on its ear revealed that the bear migrated to Alabama from Georgia. This is a pattern that wildlife biologists believe many of the bears in the area followed.

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