- There are 8 different kinds of bears - American black bears, polar
bears, giant panda bears, Asiatic black bears, sloth bears, spectacled
bears, sun bears and brown bears which are also known as grizzly bears.
- Black bears or their relatives live on all continents except Africa,
Australia, & Antarctica. Approximately 630,000 - 725,000 American
black bears live in 42 states
- They also inhabit 11 Canadian provinces. Grizzly bears (also known
as brown bears) and polar bears also inhabit North America
- The most common bear in Idaho is the Ursus americanus otherwise known
as the American black bear. Baby bears are called cubs, female bears
are called sows and male bears are called boars.
- Brown bears and polar bears are the biggest bears.
- They can be over 6 feet long and can weigh from 100 to 600 pounds.
Sun bears which live in south east Asia are the smallest bears.
- They weigh about 100 pounds or 45 kg.
- Bears walk on their feet as humans do, with their soles flat on the
- The black bear is approximately 4 to 7 feet from nose to tail, and
two to three feet high at the withers.
- It has small eyes, rounded ears, a long snout, a large body, a short
tail, and shaggy hair.
- It differs from grizzly bears in being smaller with a smaller shoulder
hump, a furred rear instep, a less concave facial profile, smaller claws
that are more tightly curved, and longer, smoother, and more tapered
- Black Bears are not always black. They can be black, brown, and occasionally
blonde or even white. Some black bears have a white chest patch.
- Most wild male black bears weigh between 125 and 500 pounds, while
females generally weigh between 90 and 300 pounds. Their weight depends
upon their age, the season of the year, and how much food is available.
- The heaviest wild male black bear known weighed 880 pounds and the
heaviest known female weighed 520 pounds.
- Black bears in captivity may exceed these records.