Read summaries of Florida black bear research.
Black Bear Habitat Use in Camp Blanding Wildlife Management Area
and Movements Within the Ocala to Osceola Linkage (Ongoing since 2011)
Black dots represent locations of 17 radio-collared adult bears recorded during a study of bear habitat use in and around Camp Blanding Joint Training Center. The collars report the bears’ locations 27 times each day. This map shows locations reported as of December 2012.
Fish and Wildlife Research Institute (FWRI) biologists are using GPS satellite radio collars to study bear habitat use in and around the Camp Blanding Joint Training Center and track their movements between the Ocala National Forest and the Osceola National Forest. These collars provide the location of study animals 27 times each day, providing near real-time information about their movements. This project is funded by the training center and is designed to help biologists determine bear habitat needs, identify important local corridors linking Camp Blanding to other conservation lands and locate regional habitat linkages through which bears travel in the Ocala-to-Osceola Corridor.
By better understanding bear habitat use in this area, researchers can predict bear habitat use in north-central Florida, which will assist with prioritizing conservation land purchases in the area and guide management actions. Despite not being designed to estimate population abundance, this field work has also improved our knowledge of the bear population in this area. It is the first major study of Florida black bears residing in a peripheral range, or one outside a subpopulation’s core habitat.