ISLAND PARK – On the evening of May 5th, a father and son from California were hunting for black bear in Idaho near the Continental Divide above Henrys Lake. The fifteen-year-old son mistakenly shot and killed a nine-year-old male grizzly bear.
Upon returning to their family cabin, the hunters realized that they had mistakenly killed a grizzly bear and called to report the incident to the Idaho Department of Fish & Game (IDFG) the first thing in the morning.
Upon investigation, Fish and Game personnel confirmed that the bear was indeed a grizzly bear. The juvenile was issued a warning, and the father was issued a citation for take / possess a protected species. The arraignment date for the citation is set for June 1, 2016. The bear was seized and will be used for educational purposes.
IDFG conferred with the local United States Fish & Wildlife Service Special Agent before proceeding with the investigation. It was agreed that IDFG move ahead with investigation of the incident just as it had in a prior case involving an Idaho hunter who claimed he killed a grizzly bear in self-defense in May of 2014. He was convicted in December of that same year when a jury did not believe his story. IDFG believes it is important to show that it can be swift and fair in relation to enforcement of regulations related to grizzly bears.
Proper identification of any species being hunted is important, but especially in those parts of Idaho that contain both black and grizzly bears. To learn more about identification visit: http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/education/bearIdentification/