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Matriarch grizzly bear hit and killed on US Hwy 93

Flathead Indian Reservation Sign
Posted at 2:52 PM, Sep 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-17 17:33:50-04

MISSOULA — A 25-year-old matriarch grizzly bear, known as "Griz-40", lost its life on US Highway 93 North after being struck by a vehicle around 2 am on Sep. 4 while crossing the road.

Grizzly bear deaths caused by vehicles on Highway 93 within the Flathead Reservation have been on the rise and happen rather often.

With 41 existing wildlife crossing structures, there are still areas of Highway 93 that have yet to be mitigated and considered “wildlife-friendly”.

In 2018, eight bears were hit and killed on Highway 93. Prior to 2018, there had only been nine grizzly bears hit and killed between 1998-2016.

“We are working with the Montana Department of Transportation and the US Fish and Wildlife Service to come up with highway improvements that will work for grizzlies when the highway reconstruction resumes in the Ninepipe area including the construction to add a 500-foot Post Creek bridge”, said CSKT Wildlife Biologist Whisper Camel-Means.

“This is sad to see them killed and a complicated issue to fix, grizzly bears are smart and move around where they want to.”