Grizzly relocated after exhibiting ‘habituated behavior’

Posted 5/26/20

An adult male grizzly was captured southwest of Cody on Sunday and relocated to another area by members of the Wyoming Game and Fish Department’s large carnivore team.

The bear was captured …

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Grizzly relocated after exhibiting ‘habituated behavior’

Posted

An adult male grizzly was captured southwest of Cody on Sunday and relocated to another area by members of the Wyoming Game and Fish Department’s large carnivore team.

The bear was captured after exhibiting “habituated behavior” on private lands near the South Fork of the Shoshone River, the department said in a release on Tuesday.  

In cooperation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Shoshone National Forest, the bear was relocated to the Camp Creek drainage — approximately 30 miles northwest of Cody. 

Game and Fish will attempt to capture bears when other options are exhausted or not feasible. Once the animal is captured, all circumstances are taken into account when determining if the individual should be relocated or removed from the population.

Bears that are considered a threat to human safety are not relocated, according to the department.

If relocation is warranted, the selection of a relocation site is determined taking into consideration the age, sex, and type of conflict the bear was involved in as well as potential human activity in the vicinity of the relocation site. All decisions are finalized by the Fish and Wildlife Services while grizzlies are listed for protection under the Endangered Species Act.

Camp Creek was chosen due to the lack of human presence and ability to release the bears several miles behind closed gates.

“Grizzly bear relocation is a management tool afforded to large carnivore biologists to minimize conflicts between humans and grizzly bears and is critical to the management of the population,” the department said.

Four grizzlies have been euthanized this year as part of conflict management actions. Two of the grizzlies were inside what is considered suitable bear habitat in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, known as the Demographic Monitoring Area. The other two bears were removed near Cottonwood Creek, near Cody. Another grizzly was killed in a May 7 collision with a vehicle in the same area, on Wyo. Highway 120.

Game and Fish continues to stress the importance of the public’s responsibility in bear management and the importance of keeping all attractants (food items, garbage, horse feed, bird seed, and others) unavailable to bears. Reducing attractants available to bears reduces human-bear conflicts.

—By Mark Davis

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