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Entries in Montana FWP (59)

Thursday
Sep152011

FWP has to kill trouble-causing grizzly

(WHITEFISH)- Agents with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks have had to destroy a bear with a taste for chickens and causing other mayhem.

The male 4-year old grizzly is the same one FWP trapped at Trumbell Creek last month and relocated to Frozen Lake, which is right on the Canadian Border west of the North Fork Valley.

The bear returned to the Whitefish/Columbia Falls area this week.

Grizzly Bear Management Specialist Tim Manley noted that the 370-pound bear approached residences in the Whitefish area and got into cat food, broke into a chicken coop, and killed chickens. The same bear was suspected to have broken into camper shells, broke a window in a garage, broke into a chicken coop, got dog food, cat food, and garbage in the same area. 

Based on the level of food conditioning and property damage demonstrated by the grizzly, the decision was made to kill the bear in the interest of human safety. 

Manley reminds residents that pet food and garbage first attracted the grizzly to residences.  Residents should secure all attractants, pick ripe fruit, and pick up apples from the ground as they fall.  Ultimately, attractants resulted in the bear breaking into campers and structures.

In other grizzly news, Manley added that traps are set an adult male grizzly in the Swan Valley that is breaking into garages to get bird seed and grain in the Shay Lake area.  A trap is also set in the Coram area for another grizzly that got into garbage in the back of a pickup truck. 

Tuesday
Aug302011

FWP moves Flathead grizzlies with appetites for chicken and apples

(FLATHEAD COUNTY)- Agents with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks are keeping busy moving grizzlies who’ve been feasting on “people food.”

Two grizzly bears were captured near Lake Five, a few miles from West Glacier late last week. The adult female grizzly and yearling male had killed nearly 100 chickens at a residence over the period of two nights.  Most of the birds killed were chicks.

The bears were relocated on August 25 in the Deep Creek area along Hungry Horse Reservoir, about 10 miles southwest of Firefighter Mountain.

Grizzly Bear Management Specialist Tim Manley noted that the landowners were assisted in installing an electric fence around the chicken pen and a nearby rabbit pen.  He said that this should greatly reduce the chance of another occurrence.

Elsewhere, a female grizzly with two yearlings had been frequenting the area of Middle Road off highway 206 near the Silver Bullet Bar.  FWP agents say the bears had been eating apples that were just beginning to ripen.  As of Monday, Manley says that the adult female and one yearling have been captured.  The trapping operation will continue until the second yearling is captured.

“We’re concerned that these grizzlies will get into more attractants in the area like dog food and garbage, or bird seed,” said Manley.  He added that the bears had been eating apples within 50 feet of residences, but have not acted aggressively.

Manley acknowledged that landowners in the area have been very helpful in noting the bears’ locations and providing safe trap sites.

FWP is also tracking another grizzly who was frequenting the creek along Two Mile Drive west of Kalispell.  A trap was set about 10 days ago, along with remote cameras to document any presence of the bear.  Because no activity was seen, the trap has been pulled.

Saturday
Aug132011

2000 MT wolf tags sold in first few days

(KALISPELL)- Business remains brisk for those permits for Montana's upcoming wolf hunt, with more than 2000 sold in the first few days.

The Flathead Beacon is reporting Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks sold "nearly 2000" in the first couple of days. The permits went on sale Monday for the seasons, which begin with an archery season on September 3rd and a rifle season in mid-September.

This is the second wolf hunt the state has staged since packs were re-introduced to the Northern Rockies in the mid-1990s. Over 15,000 tags were sold for the first hunt in 2009, resulting in more than 70-wolves being killed statewide. Last year's hunt was stopped when U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy restored Endangered Species protection for the Montana and Idaho wolves just weeks before the hunts would have started.

This time around, Montana has a quota of 220 wolves, with biologists hoping to thin down the wolf populations, especially in Northwestern and Western Montana.

Conservation groups are seeking a federal injunction in a last-ditch effort to stop the 2011 hunts in both states.

Saturday
Aug132011

FWP traps and moves grizzly near Canadian border

(COLUMBIA FALLS)- Summer is in full swing and that means game agents with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks are moving into the height of the grizzly relocation season.

Last year, FWP biologists were kept scrambling in Northwest Montana moving problem bears and relocating them to safer, and more remote habitat. At one point last September the agency had to move more than half a dozen bears in little over a week.

This year we haven’t seen quite that level of activity.

This week, FWP did move one grizzly from Columbia Falls north to the Canadian border on the North Fork of the Flathead.

Grizzly Bear Management Specialist Tim Manley reports the male bear was getting into sheds, garbage and dog food and it was decided to move him for his won safety, and the safety of residents. The bear was trapped and released near Frozen Lake, which is a small lake that actually spans the border several miles west of the North Fork.

FWP says the bear was fitted with a radio collar so its movements can be monitored.

The bear Manley and his crew were trying to capture had a 5.25” front pad and the bear they captured had a front pad of 6.25”, so the agency says it might have been an “incidental capture”. But since the grizzly was among houses it was thought it better to carry out the relocation.

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