Wildlife Wednesday – The Black Bear

For today’s Wildlife Wednesday from our Ohio Division of Wildlife, we spotlight a mammal that many people do not realize you can rarely find in the buckeye state – the Black Bear.
The black bear is the most common species of bear in North America and is a state endangered species in Ohio. The name “black” bear can be somewhat misleading as this species appears in a range of color phases that include black, chocolate brown, cinnamon brown, blue-black, and even white. Its face, in profile, can be straight or Roman-nosed, a distinguishing characteristic that helps differentiate it from the dish-faced grizzly and Alaskan brown bears.
An adult black bear can weigh anywhere between 150 and 700 pounds. Males average 300 pounds while the smaller females average around 175. Males, when standing upright, measure between five and six feet tall; females, typical of mammals, are smaller, measuring four to five feet. On all fours, most adult black bears are between 2 1/2 and 3 feet at the shoulder.
Bears have a large home range and travel a great deal. Studies in other states indicate the home range of adult males to be 100 to 120 square miles in upland hardwood habitats, 24 to 50 square miles for females. Movements of 125 miles from a denning site have been documented.
Information courtesy of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources

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