Thursday, October 11, 2007

Yellowstone bear stories

There have been rumors in the Employee Dining Room (EDR) regarding bear maulings in Yellowstone (versus people or other animals). Most of the rumors, to gain validity, say they were overheard at the ranger station. Now, bears are in their hyperphagia mode so maybe they become more aggressive during this time. Bears, in general, want to avoid people, not attack or eat them. However, some incidents do occur, especially with young adolescents or females with cubs. This story was in the Helena Independent Record of Friday, October 5th, 2007.

Grizzly found dead near Gardiner

BILLINGS - A grizzly bear that attacked a Yellowstone National Park employee last month was found dead Thursday near Gardiner.

Ken Meyer, Yellowstone's safety officer, was hunting black bear near Little Trail Creek on September 9 when a female grizzly with cubs attacked him, injuring his back, leg, stomach and forearms.

Meyer told Yellowstone officials he shot at the bear three times and believed he hit it at least once.

On Thursday, the grizzly was found dead in thick brush along Little Trail Creek. The bottom part of its jaw had been shot off said Mel Frost, a spokeswoman for Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Park.

The bear's cubs have been seen in the area.


This isn't good news for the cubs who usually need a mother to survive during their first 2 years. There only chance is to be adopted by another mother which is a longshot but does happen. There's a mother bear in Yellowstone that adopted 2 cubs and has 2 of her own. She's bringing up four!!

Note that the man survived the mauling. If the bear really wanted to kill him, it could have. It was just protecting its young from a perceived threat. Once the threat deemed not a threat, she left the scene.

There are numerous, interesting books out about bear maulings. Here are a couple links to some that are sold in the gift shops in Yellowstone.

Mark of the Grizzly by Scott McMillion
Bears I have Known by Bob Murphy
Grizzly Years by Doug Peacock
Bear Attacks by Stephen Herrero

1 comment:

Greg said...

Yet another great, interesting blog entry. Thanks a bunch.

My brother is so fascinated with bear attacks on humans. He focuses on the speculated "whys" in particular. Think this interest may stem from his frequent hunting excursions. Because of this I have read two books of his on the subject. I think these two just happen to be the non-grizzly titled books in your list. In fact one I would read aloud each evening to our family at their request.

From this I have found one can generalize such as a match with your comment. BUT, and in this case one can really hate the BUT, on occasion bears do hunt people for food and attack without reason. Therein lies the biggest risk of venturing to view these babies, in my opinion.

From Sunny, Brisk, Peak-Peep-Has-Passed