Black bears in southwest Mississippi

IMG_0759A friend of mine caught these pics of a black bear near Natchez Mississippi.  This is super cool, because the black bear (Ursus Americanus) was driven nearly to extinction in Mississippi in the 1970’s.  In 1984 Black bear was listed as endangered and critically imperiled in Mississippi.

It is currently estimated that less than 150 still remain in the state. The primary reasons for the decline in population numbers were habitat destruction and over-hunting. Today, illegal kills and collisions with automobiles are the primary causes of death in Mississippi. (from Endangered Species of Mississippi)

Indeed, I’d never seen or even heard of black bear in Mississippi until about 10 years ago Elise and I saw one dead on the side of I-55 south of Brookhaven.  We could hardly believe our eyes.

In any case, this one looks happy and healthy.  In fact, he looks like he’s waiting for the people for fill that feeder back up!

 

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