Outdoors

Female Grizzly Bear Killed After Breaking into Campers

Decision was made to remove the grizzly because of the degree of food conditioning

State wildlife managers killed a female grizzly bear after the animal broke into three camp trailers in the North Fork of the Flathead River drainage.

John Fraley, spokesperson for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, said an adult female grizzly bear was captured July 29 on private property south of Red Meadow Creek. A bear had broken into three camp trailers, which were unoccupied at the time but where people had been living.

According to Grizzly Bear Management Specialist Tim Manley, the bear was captured in a culvert trap that was set within two feet of one of the trailers. The trailers had been broken into on the evening of July 28. Once inside the trailers, the bear ate dog food along with food in the cupboards.

The unmarked 315-pound grizzly had cut herself on the glass of one of the trailers and a fresh cut was found on the left front foot pad of the bear. The bear was not lactating and there was no evidence of her having cubs, according to FWP. No microchip or ear tags were found on this bear. Based on photos, FWP determined this grizzly bear also looked like the bear that got into garages, a barn, and killed chickens in the immediate area during the last two years.

The interagency decision was made to remove this grizzly bear from the population because of the degree of food conditioning, according to Fraley. The grizzly was euthanized on Aug. 1.

“It is always regrettable to put in the position of removing a grizzly bear from the population,” stated Region One FWP Wildlife Program Manager Neil Anderson. “In this case the bear was heavily food conditioned and the removal was in the interest of public safety.”