The black bear Ursus americanus is the smallest, yet most common, of the three bear species found in America (after the polar and grizzly). The current population estimate is 750,000 individuals. Black bears are only found in North America. The species ranges from Canada in the north to Mexico in the south, and lives predominantly in forests, feeding on fruit, nuts, shoots and vegetation. Black bears are excellent climbers and are often photographed scaling trees.