Black Bear Management in Missouri

Get information on black bears in Missouri, MDC black-bear research projects and management efforts, MDC’s black bear management plan, potential future hunting opportunities, and how to handle conflicts with nuisance bears. Share your comments with MDC staff.

Black Bear Management Plan (2020-2030)

MDC recently updated the Black Bear Management Plan. The updated plan illustrates the multifaceted approach to black bear management within Missouri. This includes using research to inform management decisions, increasing statewide awareness of Missouri’s bear population, and a high priority on minimizing and addressing human-bear conflict as the population grows. The three goals of the updated plan include:

Goal 1

Use science-based methods to manage a self-sustaining population of black bear, focusing on research and monitoring, population management, and habitat management.

Goal 2

Increase statewide awareness of Missouri’s black bear population and management program through coordinated outreach and public education.

Goal 3

Minimize and address human-bear conflicts.

We want to hear from you about bears in Missouri!

Missouri’s black bear population is growing and expanding. Bears sightings are becoming more common and widespread, as is nuisance activity. Report bear sightings.

Learn about Missouri's black bear population

Estimating the bear population

In This Section

FAQ: Proposed Bear Hunting Season

Browse answers to the most commonly asked questions about the proposed bear hunting season.

Proposed Bear Hunting Seasons, Limits, Methods and Zones

Read about the proposed bear management zones, season dates, limits and methods.

Proposed Bear Permits and Application Process

Read about the proposed bear permit requirements and application process.

Proposed Additional Restrictions and Requirements

Read additional restrictions and requirements being considered for bear hunting in Missouri.

Black Bear Management Facts

Find out information on Missouri's bear population and management goals.

Bear Management Plan (pdf, 440 KB)

The Department's finalized 2020-2030 plan for black bear management in Missouri.

Bear Management Plan - Public Input Summary (pdf, 8 MB)

Read a summary of the public input received about the bear management plan during the open houses held in 2019.

Related Content

Black Bear Control

Learn to identify, prevent, and control black-bear damage on your Missouri property.

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