National Black Bear Day Date in the current year: June 1, 2024

National Black Bear Day National Black Bear Day is observed annually on the first Saturday of June. It was created to celebrate the most common bear in the United States and dispel the myths surrounding this amazing mammal.

The American black bear, also known as simply black bear or baribal in some European languages, is a bear species endemic to the North American continent. It is the smallest bear species in North America, as well as the most widely distributed one: black bears can be found in all Canadian provinces and 40 U.S. states. North Carolina has the highest density of black bears in the world, as well as the largest black bears due to mild winters and high protein crops that black bears can feed on.

Black bears are medium-sized; they are smaller than grizzly bears (North American brown bears) and have a less concave skull profile, shorter claws, and less rounded ears. Brown bears also have a shoulder hump, while black bears don’t. There are sixteen recognized subspecies of the black bear. Despite their name, not all black bears have black fur: the cinnamon bear has a brown or reddish-brown coat, and approximately 10% of all Kermode bears have cream-colored or white coats.

Like all bears, American black bears are omnivorous. Up to 85% of their diet consists of vegetation (grasses, fruits, berries, nuts, acorns, and occasionally roots, bulbs and tubers) they find while foraging. The animal part of the black bear’s diet mostly consists of insects and their larvae, honey, small mammals and carrion. Black bears living in coastal areas often catch fish such as catfish, salmon, suckers and trout. In spring, black bears may prey on deer fawns.

Unlike grizzly bears, which are widely regarded as aggressive and dangerous, American black bears rarely attack humans. Even when confronted by humans, bears typically limit themselves to trying to scare them away by making threatening sounds and mock charges. However, black bears are known to steal food from campsites and even break into people’s homes in search of food. The majority of incidents involving black bears occur in areas where bears have accustomed to human contact and being fed handouts.

National Black Bear Day was founded in 2018 by the North Carolina Bear Festival, an annual festival held every June in Plymouth, North Carolina to celebrate North Carolina black bears and their role in the cultural, historical and natural heritage of the state. The festival offers several dozen activities, including wild bear tours, airboat and helicopter rides, various contests and competitions, and live music.

National Black Bear Day aims to educate the general public about the American black bear in fun ways and dispel myths and stereotypes about these animals. There are many ways to celebrate this amazing holiday. You can learn interesting facts about American black bears and share them with others, check out black bears at the nearest zoo, animal preserve or national park, take a trip to the NC Bear Festival, and spread the world about the holiday on social media with the hashtags #NationalBlackBearDay and #BlackBearDay.

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