Females have one to three cubs, usually two, and often only one the first time around. They have their first cubs at age 3.
The female grows to about 150 to 175 pounds. The male can get up to twice that big, with a shoulder height of about 4 feet.
The bear is of no danger to humans. If spotted, they will usually run away. They are by nature shy and docile. They can be a nuisance, however, when they raid garbage cans.
They can live to about 15 to 18 years old.
Some build their homes in trees, which makes it more difficult to capture them for relocation.
The Louisiana black bear is a subspecies of the American black bear, which lives farther to the north and is slightly bigger in stature. The American black bear is not threatened or endangered.
Linda Foster Benedict
(This article appeared in the spring 2002 issue of Louisiana Agriculture.)
The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture