The sub-adult male grizzly pictured at left was captured June 4 on the edge of Conrad, north of the golf course. Hazing efforts failed to push the bear away from town and so the bear was “free darted.” According to Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks Grizzly Bear Management Specialist Wesley Sarmento, “The bear was terrified of people, but it tried to escape the wrong way (ran towards the trees of town). It has no history of conflict and was relocated to the west side.”
He extended his appreciation to law enforcement personnel and local property owners for their assistance and patience during the incident.
Sarmento, however, expressed concern over the onlookers who caused the “incident to be more dangerous” due to their presence.
“Dozens of vehicles came out on scene once people heard a bear was nearby,” he said. “One car full of teenage girls kept driving down into the brush looking for the bear. The crowd pushed the bear further into town and prevented it from running away from city limits. Also, when residents surround the scene it makes the use of firearms unsafe and therefore the situation becomes more dangerous.”
Sarmento continued, “People must stay away from bear management activities – including hazing, trapping, and capturing bears. Onlookers make bear management situations more dangerous and it interferes with the work.”
Other recent bear sightings in the area include: Young bear eating grain spills at silos on Sanders Road between Conrad and Valier on the evening of June 4; a young bear observed the evening of June 7 south of Dupuyer Creek off of Skyview road north of the Conrad-Dupuyer road; both bears fled when a vehicle drove by. A sub-adult bear was observed southeast of Dupuyer along Jensen Coulee on Sunday, June 10, and fled when a vehicle arrived.