Go East, Black Bear

March 28, 2013

At one time, American black bears roamed throughout Nevada, but by the early 1900s, they’d all but disappeared from the state. A new study co-authored by WCS indicates that: numbers are rebounding, with populations scattered across the animal’s former range.

It’s a familiar story. American black bears once thrived throughout the state of Nevada, until hunting, livestock conflicts, and deforestation pushed them out. Those that remained lived only on the western edges of the Silver State.

Their whereabouts had been recorded in newspapers and pioneer journals for decades, but references started to dwindle after 1931, suggesting that black bears had all but disappeared from the state’s interior mountain ranges.

When sightings and human/bear conflicts began to swell in the 1990s, WCS and the Nevada Department of Wildlife undertook a 15-year study that included a review of the animal’s little-known state history. The newly published research shows that Nevada’s black bears are rapidly reoccupying their former range and populations are growing.

Learn more at the Reno Gazette Journal>>

Read more about Nevada’s black bear history with our press release>>

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