By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
A grizzly bear was moved from the Cody area to a spot not far from Yellowstone National Park, a Wyoming Game and Fish Department official told Cowboy State Daily on Monday.
The subadult male grizzly was captured and relocated on Saturday after it was caught getting into trash and eating pig slop, large carnivore Supervisor Dan Thompson told Cowboy State Daily on Monday.
“This bear got into garbage in a dumpster,” Thompson said. “We secured the dumpster but he also got into some ‘pig slop’ adjacent to the dumpster. Luckily he avoided the pigs.”
Thompson said this particular bear had no previous conflict history, so it was relocated from Cody to the Fox Creek area, about eight miles from Yellowstone’s northeast entrance.
This was the third grizzly bear relocation to take place this year, Thompson noted.
“We still have a long summer and fall ahead of us,” he said.
The most recent relocation took place earlier this month, when another young male grizzly was taken from Cody to the Five Mile drainage area, which sits about 5 miles from Yellowstone’s east entrance.
That particular bear was caught preying on cattle in the area, but had no prior conflicts, Thompson said at the time.
Bears that are considered a threat to human safety are not relocated, but killed.
In March, the department released its annual grizzly bear report, which showed 45 bears were captured in 2021 in 49 separate incidents. Four bears were captured more than once.
Of those 45 bears, 30 were killed by the department, with at least one being killed due to poor health.
In 2020, only 18 grizzlies were killed by the department, while in 2018, 32 were killed.
The report said that 17 of the 30 bears killed were found outside of the demographic monitoring area, the area considered suitable for the long-term viability of grizzlies in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.
Bears are killed after the department receives authorization from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service “after careful and thorough deliberation taking into account multiple factors unique to each conflict situation.”
Reasons for killing grizzlies include that they have grown used to getting food from human sources or that they have killed livestock.