Bill Lea “Understanding the Misunderstood Black Bear” Saturday, February 24th

Bill Lea – Nature Photographer & Black Bear Advocate
Program at King Library

The LeConte Photographic Society will host Bill Lea for a photo program “Understanding the Misunderstood Black Bear” on Saturday, February 24th at 10:00 a.m. at the King Library in the Burchfield room. This program is free and open to the public.

What is it about the black bear that we humans find so fascinating? Is it their size? Their strength? Or could it be OUR fear? It is probably all of these things and much more, including the cuteness of a black bear cub and the childhood association that so many of us have with the “Teddy Bear.” There are so many myths and misinformation about bears that few people really know the truth about black bears. What are they really like? Do bears have distinct personalities? Do we need to be afraid of bears? How do we co-exist peacefully? These are all things we will talk about while we enjoy photos of these amazing animals.

Photographing the wonder of wildlife, wildflowers, landscapes, and a variety of other natural subjects from the Canadian Rockies to the Florida Everglades has long been a passion for Bill Lea. Capturing intimate images of wildlife and landscapes in “just the right light” has long been the trademark of Bill’s photography. He has been leading photo workshops since 1992. More than 7,000 of Bill’s photos have been published. He has authored three coffee-table books and co-authored others. His most popular book Cades Cove – Window to a Secret World is in its fifth printing. The Everglades – Where Wonders Only Whisper is his most recent book. Bill may be best known for his portrayal of black bears and the Great Smoky Mountains. Photographing black bears for more than two decades has provided Bill with extraordinary opportunities to learn about bears. For nearly 20 years Bill has been presenting educational programs throughout western North Carolina and East Tennessee in an effort to dispel the many myths and un-truths about bears. He has appeared on Dateline NBC, National Public Radio, Midwest Outdoors, Animal Planet, local radio stations, news stations, and a variety of other programs. Bill lived among bears for two to three months per year for nearly a decade. He currently posts a bear photo and educational message five days a week on his Facebook Page: (

The enjoyment of sharing the wonder of black bears and nature with others is second only to Bill’s desire for promoting a respect for wildlife and all of God’s creation. If you would like to see more of Bill’s photography please visit his website at This program is not sponsored by the King Library.

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