Posted: Jul 7, 2012 8:15 AM by Katie Stukey - MTN News
Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks has relocated an adult grizzly that killed a calf on the south end of the Rocky Mountain Front.
Wildlife Management Specialist Mike Madel tells us the depredation happened on a ranch southwest of Augusta.
Snares were set and the female grizzly was captured on Friday morning. Madel says the sow is seven or eight years old and in very poor condition.
She's described as 280 pounds, blond with dark chocolate legs. On a scale of one to five for health, Madel lists her at a 1.5 or as two. He says it looks like she recently had a litter and already released her offspring.
It's believed the sow was raised in the area south of Augusta, so Madel's unsure what may have triggered this depredation.
This was the first time she'd been captured and FWP says it's likely she was desperate, so they made the decision to relocate her a shorter distance than usual.
She was taken about 45 miles north to the north end of Blackfeet Wildlife Management Area.
FWP expects she'll likely move back toward the south end of the front, but say first time captures are often a strong form of conditioning and they're hopeful she'll stay out of trouble.
Her collar will stay on for two to three years and FWP will let landowners know if she's getting close to the area again.
Madel says conditions on the Front and around Augusta are very dry, but it looks like the berry crop and chokecherries could be strong, so bears should be able to feed on those in the later part of the summer.