BREAKING: Yellowstone Euthanizes Mother Bear, Sends Cubs to Zoo

Mother grizzly involved with fatal bear attack on Yellowstone hiker euthanized; cubs being sent to zoo.  Yellowstone National Park on Thursday, Aug. 13 said an autopsy and evidence collected at the scene of a fatal bear attack connects the hiker's death to a mother bear and cubs that were captured and currently being held.  Here is what the Yellowstone public affairs office sent out verbatim:

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK NEWS RELEASE

Hiker’s Death Confirmed as Grizzly Attack

Results from an autopsy conducted on Monday afternoon concluded that Lance Crosby, a 63 year old Billings man, died as a result of traumatic injuries sustained from a bear attack.

Results from genetic (DNA) analysis of bear hair samples collected next to Crosby’s body confirmed the adult female grizzly bear that was captured at the scene on the night the body was discovered was the bear involved in the fatal attack.

Additional support beyond the DNA evidence that this female was the bear involved in the attack include: the bear and cubs were at the attack site when Crosby’s body was found by park rangers; bear tracks of a female with cubs were found at Crosby’s body; this bear was captured at the fatality site within 24 hours of the body being found; and canine puncture wounds inflicted on the victim are consistent with the bite size of the female captured at the site.

Based on the totality of the evidence, this adult female grizzly was the bear involved in the fatality and was euthanized today. An important fact in the decision to euthanize the bear was that a significant portion of the body was consumed and cached with the intent to return for further feeding. Normal defensive attacks by female bears defending their young do not involve consumption of the victim’s body.

Arrangements have been made to transfer the bear’s two cubs to a facility accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). The AZA sets strict standards for facilities with regard to animal handling and care. Details of this placement are still being finalized. The facility is expected to make an announcement on Friday.  

“As managers of Yellowstone National Park, we balance the preservation of park resources with public safety,” said Yellowstone National Park Superintendent Dan Wenk. “Our decision takes into account the facts of the case, the goals of the bear management program, and the long term viability of the grizzly bear population as a whole, rather than an individual bear.”

The area closures, including the Elephant Back Loop Trail and Natural Bridge Trail will be lifted on Friday, August 14.  

All of Yellowstone is bear country. Hikers are encouraged to travel in groups of three or more, always carry bear spray that is readily accessible, make noise on the trail, and be alert for bears. Per park regulations, people are required to maintain a minimum distance of at least 100 yards from bears and wolves and at least 25 yards from all other large animals.

 

Editor's Note: For a counterpoint read Marc Bekoff's article on ThisIsBozeman.

 

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New!  Bob Barbee: A Great Leader
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Feature Well

The Well

diamondLine1Thin

 Writings By:

Ken Sinay - Wild Thoughts
(Ken Sinay's Blog)

A guide's view of Yellowstone

_______________

Daniel J. Smith - YellowstoneGeo
(Colter's Hell)

YellowstoneGeo Blog

_______________

Zach Mills - Wildness
(a naturalist in Yellowstone)

New! The Wildness Element

_______________

David Quammen - Journeys
(David Quammen's blog)

July 2014, Teton Wilderness, Wyoming

_______________

Jacob Thacker - Geo View
(a geologist's view of Yellowstone)

New! The Beartooth Plateau and Beartooth Highway

_______________

John Baden - FREE Insights
(on liberty, ecology & prosperity)

New!  Bob Barbee: A Great Leader
of the World's First National Park

_______________

 

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