Black Bear Found Dead Along Elkhart County Road
By: Mike Stiles - Saturday, August 21, 2021

(photo courtesy of National Geographic Society)

(ELKHART COUNTY) – The Indiana Department of Natural Resources have recovered the body of a black bear north of Bristol in Elkhart County on Wednesday.

DNR officials say the bear was found near the Indiana Toll Road and was in an advanced state of decomposition. The remains were delivered to the Indiana Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory at Purdue to see if they could determine a cause of death.

Preliminary results revealed the bear had many fractured bones, injuries that DNR Mammalogist Brad Westrich says are consistent with a vehicle collision.

The DNR has not received reports of black bears in the area before finding this animal.

Hair and tissue samples will be analyzed to determine where the black bear originated. It was not the same black bear that had previously visited southern Indiana earlier this summer.

Indiana was once home to black bears. Bear populations in neighboring states are expanding, and Indiana’s forests and hills, primarily located in the southern portion of the state, are excellent habitat for black bears.


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