Surry County man harvests No. 3 all-time black bear

trophy bear
Eddie Barr (green shirt) killed this big bear in Surry County, N.C. in 2016.

Bear may be largest ever killed by a hunter

A Dobson, N.C., hunter has taken a black bear that may be the largest ever taken by a hunter under the Boone & Crockett Club’s scoring system.

Eddie Barr took the big bear during the 2016 season in Surry County on a hound hunt. The bear weighed 595 pounds on uncertified scales, huge for a mountain bear. But it was the size of the bear’s skull that was most impressive.

James Tomberlin and Chris Kreh, biologists with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission and certified B&C scorers performed the initial scoring. They taped it out at 23 5/16 inches. This makes it the third-largest bear ever scored and the biggest ever killed by a hunter. The Nos. 1 and 2 bears were found dead.

Barr’s friend took skull to certified scorer

Barr said he knew the bear was huge. But he had no idea its skull was world-class until a friend took it to a certified scorer for the Pope & Young Club, which keeps archery records. The scorer put his tape on the bear and said Barr needed to have it scored by a Boone & Crockett Club scorer because it was a world-class animal.

Barr then called Tomberlin, and he asked Kreh to help him score the bear.

“As a Boone and Crockett scorer, it was an honor to get to score a world-class animal, something you wouldn’t expect in North Carolina,” Tomberlin said. “(It’s) an incredible example of the successful comeback of the American black bear in North Carolina. And it’s a testament to the North American model of wildlife conservation”

The skull is in Springfield, Mo. A panel of Boone & Crockett scorers will score and certify it during the club’s 30th North American Big Game awards banquet Aug. 1-3.