The black bear The black bear ranges over a great deal of the United States, and in fact much of North America. It lives in forests and woodlands and most of the United States national park areas. The Black Bear is in good supply, and is listed among the animals of least concern on the Red List. American Black BearAppearance The black bear is .. deep brown or black and has a very broad snout, a rounded skull which tapers in the front, and a set of small rounded ears that are set back on their head. They can actually range from deep brown, brownish black, all the way to a light sandy tone depending on the time of year and the heredity of the bear. Breeding The Black Bear breeds in mid summer, late June or early July, and will gestate for about 235 days, or nearly the same time span as a human. They give birth to a litter of cubs, usually two but as many as three or four and as few as just one. This takes place in late January or the early part of February. The Young The cubs will be tiny, hairless, and completely helpless, weighing under a pound when they are born. They will open their eyes at about a month old, and will drink milk from the mother for about 7 or 8 months time. At about six months old they will weigh in at around forty pounds. By the time they are 8 months old they may weigh 60 pounds and when they are 18 months old, typically the cubs will leave the den and become independent of the mother. At around three years, they will begin to produce their own litters. In the wild, the black bear will usually live about 18 years. Habits Black bear are very territorial animals and will mark their chosen area by rubbing or clawing it. They wil swim and climb very well and may pursue their enemies or prey as well as to get away from predators or hunters by running. Only rarely will the black bear turn to fight. Typically this is when they are with cubs. They are omnivores, eating nearly any kind of insect or vegetation, but will also feed on game as well as some domestic animals if the opportunity arises.
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