J. R. Brady

Black Bear Roadkills in Florida

From 1976 to 1986,99 black bears (Ursus americanus) killed by motor vehicles were collected from roadsides throughout Florida. Males (N = 66) were killed approximately twice as frequently as females (N = 30). Males of dispersal age were killed more frequently than bears in other age classes. Seasonal peaks in roadkills occurred in May-July and in October-December. Strategies aimed at reducing the number of road-killed bears include driver education, bear crossing signs, and underpasses in new highway construction projects which allow bears safe passage.

Fall Food Habits of Black Bears in Baker and Columbia Counties, Florida

Stomachs from 36 hunter-harvested black bears were collected over a 5-year period from October through January in Baker and Columbia Counties, Florida. Saw palmetto (Serenoa repens) was the most important item in the diet. Other important foods included black gum (Nyssa biflora), gallberry (Ilex glabra), yellow jackets (Vespula spp.), and armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus). The practice of winter burning may have artificially increased the importance of saw palmetto to bears in the study area.