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Endangered species in Japan : Japanese black bear

Animal

The Japanese black bear is a subspecies of the Japanese black bear and lives in Japan. Japanese black bears are familiar to Japanese people, and since they are often mentioned in stories, most Japanese people are familiar with them. It’s a very famous bear, but it’s actually an endangered animal. This bear is endemic to Japan and has a small habitat, so there is a possibility of complete extinction.

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habitat

The Japanese black bear lives in Japan.

Characteristics

The Japanese black bear is a subspecies of the black bear and is endemic to Japan. With a body length of 100-150 cm and a weight of 50-100 kg, it is a creature about the size of a human. It is characterized by its taller back and no raised shoulders, and the hair on its whole body is black. There are rare reddish brown and dark brown individuals. Japanese black bears are distributed in Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu, and are active both day and night. Bears rarely attack people or livestock, but if you startle them or attack them, they may become hostile and attack you. The Japanese black bear is good at climbing trees and has the habit of stripping bears. This involves stripping off the bark from the root for about 2 to 3 meters, leaving claw marks and tooth marks. In winter, they hibernate in tree cavities and caves, so they cannot be seen in winter.

Ecology

Japanese black bears are omnivorous, eating nuts and roots, as well as insects, crayfish, and fish. Reproduction is viviparous. Females can give birth to 1-2 offspring at a time. The lactation period lasts for three and a half months, and the newborn opens its eyes in a week. Children stay with their parents until they are about three years old. They have a lifespan of 20 years or more, but they can live up to 30 years in captivity.

endangered species

The number of Japanese black bears is still stable in Japan as a whole, but there are places where the possibility of extinction is high when looking at each region. There have been no sightings of this bear in Kyushu since 1957. It is said that they are already extinct. Shikoku is also in danger of extinction. In Kagawa and Ehime prefectures, it became completely extinct in the 1970s. Japanese black bears sometimes attack people, so they are often shot dead. Since the 1900s, land development has progressed, and there are no places for bears to live, and they have come out to residential areas. And the bears die one after another because they attack humans. Due to the increase in such cases, hunting bans have been enacted in Kochi and Tokushima prefectures. Hunting is now prohibited in a wide area of ​​western Japan, and protection is progressing.

Breeding

Japanese black bears can attack humans, so they are not suitable for domestication. See it at the zoo or go to Japan.

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