Use of pen-reared black bears for augmentation or reintroductions

  • Published source details Stiver W.H., Pelton M.R. & Scott C.D. (1997) Use of pen-reared black bears for augmentation or reintroductions. Bears: Their Biology and Management, 9, 145-150.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Release captive-bred individuals to re-establish or boost populations in native range

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation
  1. Release captive-bred individuals to re-establish or boost populations in native range

    A study in 1982–1997 in a mountain forest reserve in Tennessee, USA (Stiver et al. 1997) found that at least 10 of 23 captive-bred American black bears Ursus americanus released into the wild were killed or had to be removed. Ten of 23 captive-bred black bears (43%) survived for an average of 172 days after release (range 4–468 days) before being killed (seven bears), euthanised after being hit by a vehicle (one bear), relocated (one bear) or returned to captivity (one bear). The fate of the 13 other released bears is not known (one tracked bear lost its radio-collar after 484 days, 12 bears were not radio-tracked or observed again after release). Twenty-three captive-bred, pen-reared black bears (11 male, 12 female; average 2.5 years old) were released in 1982–1995 at five sites in which bear hunting was prohibited in the Cherokee National Park. All bears were individually marked with ear-tags and/or tattoos. Seven were radio-collared and monitored an average of once every 18 days from an aircraft in 1983–1997.

    (Summarised by: Ricardo Rocha)

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