UPDATE: West Yellowstone Grizzly Bear Fatality
By angelamontana

Posted: July 25, 2023
West Yellowstone update: Following Saturday’s tragic human fatality from a grizzly bear encounter on the Buttermilk Trail, FWP staff have patrolled the area heavily for three days and attempted for three nights to capture the bear due to the incident’s proximity to campgrounds, residences and a high volume of recreational visitors. No bears have been captured or seen since the incident.
Starting today, capture operations will be discontinued in this area. However, FWP staff will continue to monitor the area closely for bear activity. The Custer Gallatin National Forest area closure remains in effect for public safety.
Montana is bear country. Grizzly bear populations continue to become denser and more widespread in Montana, increasing the likelihood that residents and recreationists will encounter them in more places each year.
Avoiding conflicts with bears is easier than dealing with such conflicts. Here are some precautions to help residents, recreationists and people who work outdoors avoid negative bear encounters:
– Carry bear spray and be prepared to use it immediately.
– Travel in groups whenever possible and make noise, which can help alert bears to your presence.
– Stay away from animal carcasses, which often attract bears.
– Follow food storage orders from the applicable land management agency.
– If you encounter a bear, never approach it. Leave the area when it is safe to do so.
– Keep garbage, bird feeders, pet food and other attractants put away in a secure building. Keep garbage in a secure building until the day it is collected. Certified bear-resistant garbage containers are available in many areas.
– Never feed wildlife. Bears that become food conditioned lose their natural foraging behavior and pose threats to human safety. It is illegal to feed bears in Montana.
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