Main Content

Home » Lake Martin and black bears

Lake Martin and black bears

Black Bear information and tips to avoid conflict

The black bear population in Alabama is not very larger per say, guestimated to be less that 400 but appears to be increasing with the number of sightings. From our Outdoor Alabama website, the Alabama dept of conservation & natural resources, Keith Gauldin stated “It is quite evident that black bears are increasing in numbers and expanding the historic ranges,” said Keith Gauldin, Assistant Wildlife Chief for the Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF). “During spring and summer, adult males will cover surprisingly large areas in search of receptive females. Young sub-adult bears, recently ousted from their mothers’ territory, will also roam widely to establish their own home ranges.”

Black bears are not really know to be agressive, more shy and don’t want any human contact. If they are in an area that is a little out of it’s element, they are usually looking for food. So a good rule of thumb is not to leave your animals food bowls filled outside.

While bears are classified as a game animal, there is no open hunting season for black bears in Alabama. The public is encouraged to report black bear sightings to WFF district wildlife offices, online at, or by email to Keith Gauldin at keith(dotted)gauldin(at)dcnr(dotted)alabama(dotted)gov.

Tips from Outdoor Alabama on what to do if you encounter a black bear-

  • Do not be frightened
  • Do not approach the animal
  • Do not run from the bear, back away slowly
  • Stand tall and upright
  • Avoid direct eye contact with the bear
  • Make sure the bear has a unobstructed direction to escape
  • Never purposely feed a bear

update * 6/30/16