NEW JERSEY - How Many Bears Exist in New Jersey? After decades of almost extincting entirely in New Jersey, black bears are making an unexpected comeback and expanding their habitat east and south of where they once were; notable sightings can be found in Sussex, Passaic Warren and Morris counties.
How Many Bears live in New Jersey?
Recent reports of bear encounters across New Jersey have seen an upsurge. Governor Phil Murphy recently proposed reinstating black bear hunting to reduce human/bear conflicts and reduce possible confrontations between bears and humans.
New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife biologists have estimated a 2020 bear population estimate for areas north of Interstate 78 and west of Interstate 287 to be 3,158; an increase over their 2019 estimate of 2,208.
Officials with fish and wildlife organizations attribute the increase in bear numbers to several factors, such as an expanding human population and limited natural food supplies.
Black bear populations have become more dispersed across the state in response to these changes, allowing access to food sources such as trash cans, pet food left outside for collection and bird feeders; agricultural crops, poultry farms and livestock farms.
Over the past decade, bear-human incidents in Colorado have dramatically increased. From foraging for food in trash cans to wandering onto residential streets and backyards, bear-human encounters can be dangerous encounters for both parties involved.
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