Grizzly Bear Has Been Seen in the Bighorn Mountains of Wyoming. A Bear Was Killed for Attacking Cattle

Grizzly Bear Has Been Seen in the Bighorn Mountains of Wyoming. A Bear Was Killed for Attacking Cattle

There really was a grizzly bear in Wyoming’s Bighorn Mountains on Monday, when game agents killed a bear that had attacked cattle south of Ten Sleep. This confirmed stories and tales that had been going around for years.

“I’m surprised, but not surprised,” bear hunter and conservationist Joe Kondelis told Cowboy State Daily on Monday afternoon, not long after the Wyoming Game and Fish Department made the announcement.

“Many guys I know have said they’ve seen grizzlies in the Bighorns, and I didn’t believe them,” he said.

The agency said that Game and Fish officials looked into a report on Sunday of a cow with injuries that were consistent with a grizzly bear attack on private ranchland.

Wildlife officials checked nearby tracks and signs that the bear visited the ranch several times in the past week, according to a prepared statement from Game and Fish. “The male grizzly bear that was close to becoming an adult was put down after the US Fish and Wildlife Service was consulted because it was killing animals and frequenting the ranch.”

“It’s going to keep happening”

A black bear shooting season is about to start in the spring in the Bighorn Mountains. Kondelis said that he will set up bait sites for when the season starts.

He said he’d never seen a grizzly in the Bighorns. However, the news from Game and Fish on Monday shouldn’t have come as a surprise to anyone, since experienced shooters have long reported seeing grizzlies in those mountains.

“Someone told me, ‘Oh, that person saw one.'” He also said, “I didn’t brush it off as a myth.” For years, grizzlies have been moving out from their main home in and around Yellowstone National Park.

“There is no more room for grizzlies in Yellowstone,” Kondelis said. “Maybe in the last five to seven years, we’ve seen it a lot.” The Byron area has been filled with grizzlies.

There is a small town called Byron in Big Horn County. It is in between Powell and Lovell.

He also thought it was odd that the first proven sighting of a grizzly bear in the Bighorns was in the Ten Sleep area.

His words, “I’m shocked to see one all the way down by Ten Sleep,”

Grizzlies moving farther away is “going to be a continuing thing,” Kondelis said, because bears will go long lengths to find food and new spots to live.

He also said that the story of the grizzly in the Bighorns comes after a grizzly was seen recently south of Havre, Montana. This is part of a pattern of grizzlies moving farther east into Montana’s high prairies.

Will not lead to a New Population

A message from Game and Fish says that the Bighorns are not a good place for grizzlies to live.

Game and Fish say that the fight happened in the basin of the Bighorn Mountains, more than 80 miles from the eastern boundary of what is called the Demographic Monitoring Area. This is the area that is thought to be biologically and socially ideal for grizzly bears.

“Wyoming’s grizzly bear population is managed and monitored where suitable habitat exists as designated by the USFWS and informed by the Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team,” the statement from Game and Fish Director Brian Nesvik said.

Nesvik also said, “The Bighorn Mountain Range is not a good place for grizzly bears to live, and the department does not want them to live there.” “Their spread into habitats that aren’t good for them makes it more likely that bears and people will fight, which hurts the success of grizzly bear conservation.”

Kondelis agreed that the Bighorns aren’t a good place for a grizzly bear community to live.

“This is only one time a grizzly bear was caught.” “And I hope it doesn’t keep happening,” he said. Grizzlies can become a population very quickly, though, if a few get away without being seen.

Game and fish are not to Blame

Game and Fish’s Kondelis said they are doing everything they can to keep grizzlies in the Yellowstone recovery zone. He doesn’t think the government is to blame for a bear showing up in the Bighorns.

He said, “Those guys have a hard time taking care of those bears.” “Bears will be bears.”

In Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho, grizzlies are still protected by the federal government as endangered species, so people are not allowed to kill them.

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