-->

Alabama Symbols, Emblems, and Honors

for Kids

Official Alabama Mammal

Black bear

 

photo of black bear


Image courtesy of Steve Pfiffer, Coldwell Banker, www.forestryimages.org

 

In 2006 the Alabama Legislature designated the Black Bear (subfamily ursinae, Ursus americanus Pallas), to be the official state mammal of Alabama.

 

Black bears in Alabama are normally black with a brown muzzle and an occasional white blaze on the chest. Average body weights range from 150 to 350 pounds for adult males and 120 to 250 pounds for females with body lengths from 3 to 6 feet. Black bears are classified as carnivores even though their omnivorous diet consists mainly of plant material. Black bears are poor predators and only eat vertebrate animals when the opportunity presents itself. Female black bears typically begin having cubs at three to five years of age; however, in marginal habitats, this may increase to seven years. Mating generally occurs in the summer months, and cubs are born in winter dens in January and February. Litter size can range from one to five with twins being most common. The sex ratio at birth usually one male to one female. Cubs measure only 8 inches in length and weigh from 8 to 12 ounces when born.

 

Sources:

Acts of Alabama 2006, SB76.

Outdoor Alabama website.

 

Return to Kids' Emblems page

 

Updated: March 27, 2007

http://www.archives.alabama.gov/kids_emblems/st_mammal.html