LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The recent Black Bear sightings in Southern Indiana have people talking.

Keith Kaiser decided to keep the conversation going with a Black Bear sighting of his own, in Downtown Louisville.

He and his furry friend visited Fourth Street Live! to find out how much people knew about Black Bears.

The Indiana Division of Fish and Wildlife provided some bear facts.

Although black bears were common in Indiana, there hasn't been a resident population since before the Civil War.

There hadn't been a confirmed report of a black bear since 1871 until a year ago.

Black bears, once a native species in Indiana, are listed a an exotic animal and are protected under Indiana Code 312-9-3-18.2.

This code prohibits the killing of a black bear except by resident landowners or tenants while the animal is "destroying or causing substantial damage to property owned or leased by the landowner or tenant."

Black bears have entered Indiana from neighboring states the last two summers, a clear sign that bear populations in those states are increasing and that Indiana habitat is attractive to bears.

More Bear Facts:
- Black bears are stocky with short legs.
- They have a thick black coat with a tan muzzle.
- Adult males weigh 150-400 pounds.
- Adult females weigh 100-250 pounds.
- Black bears are omnivores.
- They eat grass, seeds, berries, insects, rodents and carrion.
- Black bears are most active dawn and dusk.
- Black bears are generally very timid and not aggressive toward people.
- Young males can travel up to 20 miles a day into new areas before retreating to their primary range.

If you see a bear:
- Enjoy it from a distance.
- DO NOT climb a tree.
- Advertise your presence by shouting and waving your arms.
- Back away slowly and DO NOT run.
- Never attempt to feed or attract bears.
- DO NOT intentionally follow a bear to take photos or video.

Report bear sightings to the Indiana Division of Fish and Wildlife at (812) 334-1137 or email dfw@dnr.IN.gov.

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