You never know what you may come across in the great outdoors of Iowa – and some people had sightings of a black bear in northeast Iowa during the first few weeks of June.  A 2007 report from the Iowa DNR detailed how Black Bears were once indigenous to Iowa (H/T to Brenda Friedrich @ enroute365):

“When the settlers reached Iowa, they found [bears] widespread throughout the state … Bears were killed because they would damage crops, harass and kill livestock, and because they were valuable both as food and for their hides.

It seems a bear from Wisconsin has made it’s way on a 250+ mile journey through Iowa. The story from the AP is here:

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) – A black bear apparently looking for love has made his way back to a natural habitat after several weeks of roaming Iowa and Illinois.

Iowa Department of Natural Resources wildlife biologist Terry Haindfield says the bear’s 250-mile journey probably started as a search for a mate.

The bear was first spotted on June 6 near Lansing, Iowa, a Mississippi River town near the Wisconsin border, and was last spotted in Iowa on June 14 near Goose Lake, more than 100 miles south.

Haindfield says the bear traveled about 20 miles a day, and frequent reports from residents helped him keep track of the bear’s movements.

The bear is now in the woods near Baraboo, Wisc., about 100 miles east of the Iowa border.

Information from: The Gazette, http://www.gazetteonline.com/