Black Bear Research
The Missouri Department of Conservation began a statewide black bear population estimation project in 2010 using GPS collars. Population work resulted in identifying 141 individual bears and an overall 2012 population estimate of 279 bears. Black bear distribution in southern Missouri appears patchy and restricted to areas of continuous forest such as the Mark Twain National Forest. Current research is intended to measure survival and reproductive rates for female bears in Missouri. This information will enable MDC to forecast population growth rates for bears in Missouri.
No black bears have succumbed as a result of capture or wearing a GPS collar in this study.
Black Bear Study:
Black Bears in Missouri:
Black Bear Cubs:
Black Bear Dens:
Black Bear Locations
The GPS generated locations of black bears on this web site are not displayed in real-time. There is a delay of up to 1 week or longer. During the denning season of the current year (November - April) locations will not be displayed when the bears are chosing a den site. Spring locations will not be made available until bears have moved from denning areas, which is usually late April.
The GPS collars are programmed to provide a bear location at a rate that varies from 1 location every 10 minutes (during the mating season) to about 1 every 2.5 hours (during the denning season). The batteries on the GPS collars are expected to last between 18 to 36 months. However, some bears are very adept at removing the collars. Fortunately, these bears are frequently recaptured and a new collar is re-applied.
Although all data in this viewer have been compiled by the Missouri Department of Conservation, no warranty, expressed or implied, is made by the department as to the accuracy of the data and related materials. The act of distribution shall not constitute any such warranty, and no responsibility is assumed by the department in the use of these data or related materials.
Do Not Feed Bears
Never intentionally feed bears! Fed bears lose their fear of humans and can become dangerous, fed bears usually have to be destroyed. To reduce the potential of damage, don't encourage their presence or attract them to your property. Remove the food and remove the bear.
The Missouri Department of Conservation encourages reporting all black bear sightings, please see: black bear sightings