4th Grizzly Relocated to Park County in 2021
Written by Andrew-Rossi on July 20, 2021
Park County gains another grizzly bear after a Pinedale grizzly was relocated near Yellowstone National Park’s East Gate due to cattle killings.
Wyoming Game and Fish coordinated with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to relocate a troublesome grizzly. This time, an adult male was captured near Pinedale and relocated to the Five Mile Creek drainage in Park County – five miles away from Yellowstone’s East Gate.
The grizzly in question had been killing cattle on a U.S. Forest Service grazing allotment. After capturing the bear, the Five Mile Creek drainage was specifically chosen as the relocation site due to its lack of people.
Park County continues to be a popular place for grizzly relocation. Of the four Wyoming grizzlies captured and relocated in 2021, all have ended up in Park County.
In early April, an adult male grizzly was captured near Meeteetse and relocated to the Sunlight Creek drainage, 28 miles northwest of Cody. Later that month, another grizzly was captured west of Meeteetse was relocated to the Jojo Drainage south of town. A third grizzly was relocated to the Fox Creek drainage in June after it was frequently visiting a guest ranch along the North Fork.
Intriguingly, another grizzly was relocated to the Five Mile Creek drainage in July 2020. That subadult male had also been captured near Pinedale after breaking into and eating livestock feed.
Grizzly bear relocation is one management tool that large carnivore biologists use to minimize conflicts between humans and grizzly bears. It is critical to managing grizzly populations.
When other options are exhausted or unattainable, Game and Fish will attempt to capture the bear. All circumstances are considered when determining if a captured individual should be relocated or removed.
Bears that are considered a threat to human safety are NOT relocated.
Consultation with the appropriate personnel and agencies occurs to minimize the chance of future conflicts and maximize the survival potential of the relocated grizzly bear. Bears that are deemed an immediate threat to human safety are not released back into the wild.
Bears are relocated following state and federal law and regulation. Game and Fish stresses the importance of the public’s responsibility in bear management and the importance of keeping attractants (food items, garbage, horse feed, birdseed, and others) unavailable to bears.
Reducing attractants available to bears reduce human-bear conflicts. For more information on grizzly bear management and reducing the potential for conflicts, please visit the Bear Wise Wyoming page.
For further information, please contact the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Grizzly Bear Recovery Coordinator, Hilary Cooley, at (406) 243-4903.