No matter what you might have heard, you can’t shoot black bears in Alabama.
A local hunter recently shot a black bear just outside of Heflin, Alabama and was quickly arrested by local conservation officers. He was later released with a pending court date.
Even though black bears are listed as game animals in Alabama, the state has not defined hunting regulations. This makes hunting them illegal.
A small population of black bears has lived in the state for some time. Most of them travel to Alabama from Georgia, and a few have taken up permanent residence. However, the population is too small to hunt.
Captain Johnny Johnson is the Supervising Conservation Enforcement Officer at the Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries District 2 Office. He was involved with the arrest of the hunter who shot at a black bear, and he gave a serious warning to anyone else thinking of trying to take down a bear within the state.
“Shooting a black bear in Alabama is a serious offense that could send someone to jail for up to a year in addition to the substantial fines,” Johnson said. “If you see a black bear, leave it alone. We want and welcome them in Alabama.”
Fortunately, the bear in question got away unharmed.