Authorities say a dead bear was found on Interstate 44 in southern Missouri.

The Springfield News-Leader reports that the adult bear was spotted Sunday morning on the eastbound interstate near Strafford. Authorities say the bear appeared to have been hit by a vehicle and was already dead when they arrived.

They say they found no indication that any person was hurt in the crash. No vehicle were around when an officer arrived.

Missouri's black bear population was estimated to be around 300 to 350 as of 2012. If the population continues to increase above 500 as expected by 2021, state officials may add a limited black bear hunting season.

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