A Montana wildlife management specialist says one of the oldest male grizzly bears recorded along the Rocky Mountain Front was euthanized this week for killing livestock.
Mike Madel with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks says the 24-year-old grizzly was killed after at least four attacks on calves were confirmed on a ranch near Augusta.
He says the bear weighed over 550 pounds.
Human-bear conflicts along the Front have increased in recent years as the bears’ population expands.
However Madel says a lush, wet spring produced food for grizzlies that’s kept them from as many conflicts this year.
“We have a lot of chokecherries just beginning to turn red," Madel said. "And by far, the number of confirmed grizzly bear conflicts with ranchers and homeowners is lower than in past years.”
Madel says so far this year there has been around 20 confirmed human-bear conflicts on the Front, he says that’s roughly a third lower than last year.