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GREENVILLE, N.C. — Black bears are making a comeback in North Carolina, according to the Daily Reflector of Greenville.

There were only around 2,000 black bears in eastern North Carolina in 1980, but that number has increased to over 10,000 bears today, according to the North Carolina Wildlife Commission.

Wildlife officials said they are considering changes to bear hunting laws due to the growing population.

Hunters will be allowed to use bait this year during the November and December seasons.

Increasing the limit of one bear a hunter can kill each season is also something that is being considered.

Bears were confined to the far eastern North Carolina, outside the mountains 30 years ago. They have since spread west.

The black bear is the only bear found in North Carolina. There are three species of bear in North America: the polar bear, the brown bear (grizzly bear) and the black bear.