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Grizzly 399

Grizzly 399: Still An Imposing Bear At The Old Age of 26

in News/Grizzly Bears
Photo By Jorn Vangoidtsenhoven

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By Jorn Vangoidtsenhoven
Guest column, Cowboy State Daily

Recently, I observed the grizzly ‘mating dance’ in Grand Teton National Park.

In the case of celebrity grizzly sow 399 and her suitor, a big boar known as Bruno, it was quite the spectacle.

The short version of the story: she wasn’t interested, he didn’t want to take ‘no’ for an answer.

While I had them in my sights for almost 4 hours straight, the behavior was consistent: 399 grazed almost non-stop while Bruno hovered near her, not eating a thing and only having eyes for her.

399 got fed up with Bruno several times, she faked running in one direction and then sprinted away from him in the other direction. Bruno, however, didn’t flinch.  Wherever 399 ran, he followed her.

On one of their ‘runs’, they ran straight in my direction.  

If you ever wondered what it looks like when a grizzly comes running at you full sprint, I have it on camera.  Those images are coming soon.

As she and Bruno ran very close to my parked car, I also got a close-up of 399’s teeth.

Unfortunately, one of the leading causes of death for grizzly bears is tooth decay, followed by starvation.

Based on these close-ups of 399’s teeth, who is currently an ‘old’ grizzly at the age of 26, it’s anyone’s guess how much time she has left …

Follow John at his website and on Facebook.

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That’s A Wrap: Grizzly 399 And Her Cubs Separate

in News/Grizzly Bears
Final photo of 399 and all four cubs together. Photo by Team 399.

By Team 399
Republished with permission

It’s been a crazy 10 days with 399 and her cubs, but I’ll start by saying that at least one cub, 1058 (yellow ear tags) is completely separated and the other three cubs are well in to the process of being involuntarily separated and may now be completely separated.

399 came back in to GTNP last Monday, moving quickly through the Moose area before spending the night north of Schwabacher Landing. Tuesday morning a large boar was at Elk Ranch Flats on 926’s scent. He ended up crossing 89 and heading west toward the Snake River at about Cunningham Cabin. He was on a possible intercept course with 399.

Late on Tuesday afternoon we saw 399 and the cubs running northbound at Potholes. She was clearly in a hurry. She ended up spending Tuesday night on Signal Mountain.

She hurriedly crossed the Snake River below the Jackson Lake dam on Wednesday morning and headed north in to Willow Flats. A large male crossed the Snake on Thursday less than 24 hours later. He appeared to be on a mission.

We briefly saw 399 at the north end of Pilgrim Flats on Thursday morning.

Late on Friday morning 399 appeared near the base of the dam again. She slowly worked her way eastward to Upper Oxbow by Friday night. Someone apparently saw a large male near the Wormhole on Friday evening.

399 and the cubs spent Saturday going back and forth between Lozier Hill and Upper Oxbow, waking up Sunday morning high up on Lozier Hill. She eventually worked her way west toward the area east of the Jackson Lake Lodge. She was seen in that area at distance on Monday as well.

On Tuesday morning 399 and all four cubs showed up in the willows north of Jackson Lake Junction before moving across the road in to Willow Flats. All 5 were visible for about 90 minutes before moving northward in to Willow Flats. They were at Pilgrim Creek heading north in to the trees at about 3 p.m.

Yesterday morning someone saw 399 and 3 cubs on the road at Signal Mountain heading south. There was a 5th hand report that she and all four cubs were at Deadman’s Bar in the late morning.

One of our previous guests had a bear in the southern part of the park last evening, but no identification was made. This morning there were several reports of bears near Moose. The long and the short of it is that 399 and three of the cubs were in the area and 399 was seen with a large boar. She was without the cubs. 399 hung out with this male at great distance at most of the day. They appeared to mate though they were behind some trees. They were grazing together at about 5:30 p.m. and all seemed peaceful. 399 suddenly alerted and started running north. Some 90 seconds later all three cubs came running out of the trees toward 399. Rather than receiving her cubs 399 tried to run them off with the large male in tow. We lost track of one cub, but 399 was successful in drawing the male off of the cubs and deep in to the woods. Two of the cubs stayed together and also headed south. We didn’t see where the last cub ended up.

In talking with the bear managers, there is collar data to show that 1058 stayed behind in the Pilgrim Creek area – we wonder if he will hook up with Fritter like 1022 and 1028 did last year. Also, the large male cavorting with 399 is not the Bruno we think of.

That’s what we have.

Follow Team 399 on their website and on their Facebook page.

Grizzly 399, Cubs Head South From Grand Teton, Likely For Last Time As Family

in News/Grizzly Bears

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Famed grizzly bear 399 and her four cubs have left the confines of Grand Teton National Park and are heading south, likely the last time they will do so as a family pack.

Wyoming Game and Fish Department grizzly bear biologist Dan Thompson told Cowboy State Daily on Friday that the 2-year-old cubs will likely separate from their mother sometime this spring and head off on their own.

“They’ve been following the Snake River corridor,” Thompson said. “They’re traveling together now, but that could change. They could go off in different directions, but a lot of things could happen.”

The bears were first seen out of their den right around Easter, meaning they spent less than a week in the park before heading south.

Thompson did not know the sex of the four offspring, but said he believed at least two of the yearlings are male.

Since 399 and her cubs have been known for getting into food sources associated with humans, such as garbage and beehives, Thompson expressed concern for the cubs once they break away from their mother.

“They’re sub-adults, so there will be a couple years where they’re going to try and obtain a resident home range, so they probably won’t be a part of the breeding process just yet,” he said. “It would be great if they just disappeared off into the woods and went about being bears and we never heard from them again.

“But based on their behavior and habituation that we’ve seen…there’s a high chance for recidivism,” Thompson continued.

However, he noted the department has done considerable work in Teton County to try to keep potential bear attractants secure from not only 399 and her cubs, but the rest of the grizzly and black bear population.

This week, Wyoming Wildlife Advocates announced it would provide every resident in Teton County, regardless of income, a bear-proof trash can that would cut down on human/bear interactions.

WWA executive director Kristin Combs did not immediately return Cowboy State Daily’s request for comment on Friday.

Once the cubs break away from 399, Thompson said she will likely go on, living life as usual and doing what bears do: eating.

He did not necessarily expect her to breed again since she is relatively old for a bear, 26, but he also noted that she continues to surprise both staff at the Game and Fish Department and Grand Teton National Park.

“We’ve had bears live into their 30s, but that’s pretty rare,” Thompson said. “For female bears, once they hit 25, you start seeing some senescence (deterioration of characteristics). If she’s healthy, she could possibly breed again, but it also depends on what her teeth look like and a lot of other factors.”

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“She Has Risen!” — Grizzly 399 And Four Cubs Have Awakened

in News/wildlife
Courtesy, Sam Bland

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By Jimmy Orr, Cowboy State Daily

Bear lovers have been anxiously awaiting the day that the 26-year-old celebrity bear known as Grizzly 399 and her four cubs would awaken from hibernation from their den in Grand Teton National Park.

According to wildlife photographer Sam Bland, that day was Saturday although the writers at the popular wildlife site Team 399 made a play on the Easter holiday by announcing the awakening by saying “She Has Risen!”

Bland reported — along with posting photos and videos — that the five grizzlies had a busy day full of hiking and swimming on Saturday before disappearing again into the woods.

“So glad to see they all survived the winter and are looking healthy,” Bland said. 

But the group won’t likely stay together long. That’s because this is the year, wildlife biologists say, the cubs are likely to head out on their own.

“399 will soon be pushing out the cubs to begin living on their own,” Bland said. “My hope is that they all live long lives and continue the legacy of their 26 year old mom, #399.”

The Facebook page “Midlife Rices” posted video of the five bears crossing a highway in Grand Teton National Park.

“I was super lucky since I had no idea she was heading straight towards me with her healthy fam,” the site said.

The five-some, which has received enormous international media attention, got into a bit of trouble last year when they — looking for food — pried into improperly stored garbage and wildlife feed. They also showed a proclivity toward beehives.

These habits, acquired because of careless humans, are what wildlife advocates are worried about. Hillary Cooley, Grizzly Recovery Coordinator for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, said last week that she anticipates “issues.”

“Bears in general, when they know they have a food source, they will repeat that and go try and find it again,” Cooley said. “It can be a human safety issue, and that’s a big deal for us.” 

If those habits continue, dire circumstances could await such as hazing, relocation, and euthanasia.

Famed wildlife photographer Thomas Mangelsen, a champion of 399 and her cubs, told the Jackson Hole News & Guide last week the more serious penalties would be “overreactions.”

“Most of this is is preventable,” Mangelsen said.  “I think they should be just very careful with her and not overreact.”

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Grizzly 399 Will Likely Kick Out Cubs This Spring

in News/Grizzly Bears

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By Wendy Corr, Cowboy State Daily

The most famous grizzly bear in Wyoming is facing an empty nest this year.

Although hibernating now, Bear 399 – northwest Wyoming’s celebrity mama of quadruplet cubs – will most likely say goodbye to some, if not all, of her four babies this summer, according to experts.

“They’ll come out of the den together,” said Dan Thompson, large carnivore biologist for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. “They’ll spend some time together for a while, but with 2-year-olds, usually they (the mama bear) will kick them off, especially when breeding starts in June, and they’ll go their separate ways.”

But Thompson told Cowboy State Daily that this particular grizzly doesn’t always do what’s expected.

“This parent in particular seems to change things very quickly,” he said.

Bear 399 will be 26 years old this year, and Thompson noted that she may be reaching the end of her child-bearing years.

“That’s pretty old for a bear to produce, and be able to forage for them,” he said. “We have documented two females with cubs of the year at age 25 — 399 would have been 24 when she had the four cubs of the year.”

Bear 399 and her cubs have been the focus of many cameras since the quadruplets first appeared two summers ago. Instagram, Facebook and other social media platforms are filled with images taken by visitors to Grand Teton National Park — and that often leads to complications for the Game and Fish Department, as well as park rangers. 

Almost a dozen incidents occurred in which Bear 399 and her cubs accessed compost, garbage, beehives and livestock feed and officials are concerned about the “bad” habits 399 might be teaching her cubs.

So the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other agencies have implemented hazing strategies to keep the bruins in line.

“Through the summer and fall, we did a lot of electric fencing with the USDA Wildlife Services around bee apiaries and gardens and other things like that,” Thompson said, “which just reduces that potential for all bears and all wildlife that might be looking for an easy food source.” 

Thompson pointed out that although the fame of Bear 399 and her cubs has caused headaches for some agencies, it’s pushed Game and Fish Department to move forward with projects that will help ensure the safety for other wildlife as well.

“We’re working closely with the county now on expanding their current food storage ordinance to basically county-wide,” he said. “And again, this is for all bears, not just one particular bear and their family. We’ve got the interest right now, we might as well use it – and if we can make an area safer for bears and for people it’s a win-win for everyone. I try to look at the silver linings of these types of situations.”

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U.S. Fish and Wildlife: Grizzly 399, Cubs Are Likely In Den

in News/Grizzly Bears

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

After being escorted out of Jackson last month, Wyoming’s most famous grizzly bear and her four cubs are likely back in their den for hibernation, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

“While we do not have a visual confirmation, based on the latest collar data received from the two yearlings, the Service believes that #399 and yearlings are now at a den site,” USFS spokesman Joe Szuszwalak told Cowboy State Daily on Monday.

Two of 399’s cubs were radio collared in the fall to reduce the chances of human/bear encounters. The group was escorted out of Jackson in November after being spotted near human food sources.

World-renowned photographer Thomas Mangelsen, a champion of the bear family, signaled relief to his followers upon receiving similar news from the Forest Service.

“Following a worrisome autumn of wandering south through ranch lands and neighborhoods, a night time trip through downtown Jackson, and three of the four cubs being trapped, tranquilized, and two radio collared, I am pleased to let you know that Grizzly 399 and all four cubs made it safely to their den,” Mangelsen said.

“399 will turn 26 during January. May she and her four cubs rest peacefully during Wyoming’s long dark winter and may they emerge in the spring to sunshine and warmth,” he said.

Grizzly Bear Recovery Coordinator Hilary Cooley wasn’t entirely convinced that 399 would stay put but was cautiously optimistic.

“She was in the backcountry and moving a little bit, but it seemed like she was zeroing in on a den site,” Cooley told Jackson Hole Daily. “Just to be clear, we have not gone in there and we don’t want to disturb her, so this is all just from GPS locations and our interpretation of what’s going on. We could be wrong — I hope not — but she could come out tomorrow.”

Hibernation can last anywhere from four to seven months.

This year, the grizzly family was believed to go into hibernation in January and come out in April. The hibernation period was later than usual due to a lack of regular food sources.

As for next year, the federal agency doesn’t have a firm plan as to how they will deal with 399 and her quickly-growing cubs.

“The agencies are going to talk in January and February. We need to take a little breather here and then we’ll see,” Cooley told the newspaper.

Grizzly No. 399, at 25, has been a celebrity in the Jackson area for years, often bringing traffic to a stop as she and her cubs roam in Grand Teton National Park near Jackson. She is believed to have given birth to about 16 cubs, including the four now traveling with her.

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Grizzly 399, Cubs Escorted Out Of Jackson This Week

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Grizzly bear 399 and her four cubs received a police escort out of Jackson this week, town officials announced Wednesday.

The popular grizzly family was escorted out of town on Tuesday night by law enforcement officers and officials from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and herded toward the North Saddle Butte area.

The bears were last reported in the Spring Gulch area and were headed north.

“We hope that she continues in that direction,” stated Jackson Police Chief Michelle Weber. 

The Jackson Police Department shared a video of the grizzlies walking through town on their way out.

The grizzly family has been sighted fairly regularly this year since it came out of hibernation and two of 399’s yearlings were recently collared by wildlife officials in order to better track their movements.

The bears have been spotted near human homes and accessing human sources of food, such as beehives, unsecured animal feed and garbage, according to the Jackson Hole Buckrail.

According to the town of Jackson, garbage in trash cans, left over Halloween pumpkins and bird food are all potential items which bears could feed on as they prepare for hibernation. Receiving a food reward conditions bears to associate food with people, which can lead to destructive or dangerous behaviors.

“This is a good reminder to urge residents in the town and county to please not leave garbage outside, remove pumpkins, birdfeeders and anything that bears may be attracted to,” Weber said.

In order to reduce possible bear conflicts store garbage in certified bear resistant containers or in a secure building or enclosure at all times. In addition, hang bird feeders with a catch pan, at least 10 feet from the ground, deck railing or patio and 4 feet away from any tree, post, or support structure.

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399 And Cubs Spotted in Park; Tour Bus Passengers Go Berserk

in News/Grizzly Bears

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By Jimmy Orr, Cowboy State Daily

At Cowboy State Daily, we have received emails asking us why there aren’t as many stories this summer about the grizzly known as 399 and her four cubs who make their home in Grand Teton National Park.

Although we haven’t quantified media coverage or social media posts from year-to-year about the celebrity bear family, anecdotally it does seem like there could be some truth to the idea they just aren’t getting the attention this year they have in the past.

Maybe it’s because individuals are heeding the advice of wildlife advocates who have asked people not to document their sightings of the bears when the group is outside Grand Teton National Park.

Or it could be that the bears are more reclusive this year as the cubs have grown larger and less prone to attack by male bears.

Regardless, a group of tourists went absolutely berserk on Wednesday when the fivesome strode past their traffic-jammed tourbus on Wednesday.

Similar to Sesame Street (outside of the shrieks of “oh my God!”), passengers counted each bear as they walked across the highway.

“Look at them! There’s another one! There’s another one! WAHHHHHH! There’s the fourth one. WHAT? Is that four or five? Oh my God! WAHHHHHHH! I can’t believe it! Don’t leave! WAHHHHHH!”

Whether anyone knew the credentials of this famous family or not isn’t known. No one in the video clip identified 399 or her brood by name … or number.  

However, someone tipped one of the photographers off because the YouTube video identified the famous bear and said the video was shot near Willow Flats in Grand Teton National Park.

Fans of the bears will be grateful to learn they are still located in the park.  Advocates get concerned when the group goes beyond the boundaries because of traffic, the increased possibility of interaction with people, and unnatural food rewards.

Noted Wyoming outdoorsman Paul Ulrich said he was pleased no one got out of their car to take a photograph with any of the bears.

“Make no mistake, any of these bears could rip your head off,” Ulrich said. “I’ve seen it happen too many times.”

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Grizzly 399, Cubs Spotted Over Weekend In Grand Teton National Park

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Nearly a month after last being seen, Wyoming’s most famous grizzly bear family was spotted again over the weekend.

Grizzly 399 and her four cubs were spotted in Grand Teton National Park over the weekend. Hunter Chip Burgess shared a video of the five bears walking on a roadway, with a line of cars stopped to get pictures and videos of the grizzlies.

“Hunted Rockefeller Parkway this morning and was treated to this on the way back through Grand Teton. Front row seats,” he wrote on Facebook.

A park ranger was at the head of the car line, keeping people and vehicles away from the bears.

In the video, the cubs seemed to be unbothered by their legion of fans, but 399 started walking away from the cars, looking behind her to make sure her babies weren’t too far behind. Well, they’re not quite babies anymore, but they’re still her babies.

The cubs soon realized their mom was gone and soon ran to catch up with her. One trailed behind a bit more than its three siblings, but the family got a move on with the park ranger’s vehicle following closely behind.

The grizzlies were last seen in April, as reported by Cowboy State Daily, which was their first sighting following hibernation. They went into hibernation a little later than usual, but it was due to their continual finding of food in the area.

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Grizzly 399 And Her Four Cubs Are Out And About

in News/Grizzly Bears
Photo Credit: Mountain Journal

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By Jimmy Orr, Cowboy State Daily

If there is a bear more celebrated than 25-year-old Grizzly 399 (and her four cubs), we’re not aware of it.

So let the celebration begin, because 399 and her brood are awake and seem to be doing well.

Credit to our friends over at Mountain Journal for letting us know about it.

They report that 399 was spotted on Thursday morning in a couple unspecified locations but probably in or near Grand Teton National Park.

“They all appear well — though a bit thin — which is to be expected after a long winter slumber,” the journal writes.

The publication opined that some thought the bears wouldn’t emerge from hibernation for a couple more weeks.

But once they’re out, they’re out.

The last time Cowboy State Daily reported on 399 was on Jan. 5 when the Wyoming Game and Fish Department thought the bears had gone to their den for hibernation. 

It was a little later than usual but that was because the family had stumbled on to many gut-piles in the area.

“Staying out a little longer for this high-protein food source has proven pretty productive for grizzly 399 and her offspring,” department spokesman Mark Gocke said.

399 dropped her radio collar years ago, so agencies have to rely on sightings to know where and how she is.

Although it’s exciting to know that 399 is back at it, we hope that she and her cubs are given plenty of space by curious observers.

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Game and Fish: Grizzly 399, Cubs Likely Back In Their Den

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Grizzly 399 and her four cubs are likely back in their den after being spotted on New Year’s Day, a Wyoming Game and Fish spokesman said Tuesday.

Spokesman Mark Gocke told Cowboy State Daily on Tuesday that although most collared grizzly bears in the Jackson region head for their dens around late November or early December, this isn’t the first time 399 has stayed out later than most.

“It seems she has learned to take advantage of the remains from late season elk hunts in the area,” Gocke said.

While the elk hunts in Grand Teton National Park and the National Elk Refuge ended mid-December, 399 and her cubs have spent the last three weeks in some of the more remote areas of the refuge to feed on gut-piles and the remains of elk carcasses left in the field.

“Staying out a little longer for this high-protein food source has proven pretty productive for grizzly 399 and her offspring,” Gocke said.

Because 399 dropped her radio collar, the Game and Fish department can’t track her movements like other bears in the area, so it relies on eyewitness reports.

The last report of the bear family came in on Friday, when it was spotted in the northern area of Grand Teton heading toward an area where 399 has denned in the past.

“We are presuming they have denned up now,” he said. “Grizzly bears will often dig new dens from one year to the next, so we don’t know exactly where she will den, but this would generally align with what she has done in the past as far as location and timing.”

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Jimmy Orr: Grizzly 399 and Her Four Cubs Romping Through the Snow

in Jimmy Orr/Column
Jimmy Orr Cheyenne

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By Jimmy Orr, Executive Editor

For those of you (us) who can’t get enough of Grizzly 399 and her happy family, there’s a new video captured by tourists last week that show the bears traversing through the snow, across the highway, and back to more snow.

As we discussed in our year-end roundup of the most popular stories on Cowboy State Daily, anything to do with Grizzly 399 and her cubs are of huge interest to our readers.

You would think they would be curled up in an enviable many-months-long state of slumber right now, but in the spirit of the recently celebrated holidays, the available food must be a gift that keeps on giving.

If you wince when you see the bears run across the road, you aren’t alone. We just hope that motorists continue to use extreme caution as they travel in the Grand Teton National Park area.

Part of the fun from this video is the play-by-play. The adults are just as thrilled as the children in the car.

It appears that one of the participants is “Facetiming” the events as you hear someone over the phone who sounded strikingly similar to Gomer Pyle say, “Golly, that sucker is big, Kurt. You better move, Kurt!”

Those sentiments were echoed by one of the children who quickly agreed: “Daddy, move!”

The driver did not move (which was a good idea). We might have rolled up the windows but it all turned out ok.

The most excitement came when the onlookers saw the four cubs bounding through the snow.

Gomer reeled off another “Golly” before the whole car gasped and laughed at what they were seeing.

“Is that not awesome, Kyle?” the driver said to Gomer.

“Oh man, that is the coolest thing I’ve ever seen,” Gomer said.

We have to agree. It was spectacular. And a great way to bring-in 2021.

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Grizzly 399 Christmas Update: Bear Family Has Plenty of Food

in News/Grizzly Bears

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Our friends at EnjoyYourParks.com keep a close lookout for Grizzly 399 and her cubs.

On Wednesday evening, they reported that although there have been no photo opportunities of the five-some since Thanksgiving, it doesn’t mean they haven’t been seen.

They report that hunters who have special permits to hunt in Grand Teton National Park have spotted the family and “all reports have been good news.”

“Every year Grizzly 399 relies on elk gut piles left by hunters, but this year these gut piles were especially important because she has four cubs to provide for as well,” they said.

“The great news is that there was a considerably higher than normal amount of elk gut piles this year in Grand Teton National Park, and this was exactly what these 5 bears needed to adequately fatten up before heading for their den,” they reported.

The site says the bears are looking healthy and they don’t know if they have begun hibernating yet.

“If 399 is still easily finding food, chances are that she still might be out and about,” they said.

“What we are thrilled about is that they’ve been eating well, which very much increases the chances that this remarkable bear family will survive the long Teton winter.”

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Grizzly 399, Cubs Sighted Back In Grand Teton

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Although the most famous grizzly in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem and her four cubs were recently seen farther south than they’d ever ventured, Grizzly 399 and her babies are now back in the Grand Teton National Park area.

Jackson-based adventure guide Matty Deehan took a video of the mother and her cubs, which have grown significantly since their debut earlier this year. He then posted it to his Instagram account, celebrating their return.

The video shows the five bears wandering through a backyard area, presumably Deehan’s, on their way back to their main home in the park.

“The family is less than a mile from returning back into Grand Teton National Park. Hopefully this time it’s for good,” Deehan wrote in the Instagram post.

The bears are preparing for hibernation, which will last around five months. Once they begin hibernating, grizzly 399 and the four cubs likely won’t be seen until late March or early April.

In October, one of the cubs was spotted limping, but all four appeared to be healthy in the video posted by Deehan.

Grand Teton National Park officials didn’t respond to a request for comment from Cowboy State Daily.

Grizzly 399 is considered the most famous bear in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. She has had around 16 cubs, including her latest four that were first seen this year.

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Interior Department Uses Grizzly 399, Cubs As Perfect Example Of How To Travel In Bear Country

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We’re not saying we used a Twitter post as an excuse to write about Grizzly 399, the objectively best bear in Yellowstone, but hey, at least it’s not politics, right?

The U.S. Department of Interior on Wednesday showed off an image of the 24-year-old mama bear and her four cubs, noting they were the best example of how to hike in bear country.

“A sweet reminder to give other families you see on the trail plenty of space! Take it from Grizzly 399, the safest way to hike in bear country is with groups of 3 or more,” the tweet read, alongside with a picture of the grizzly and her four cubs walking away from the camera (which is probably for the best).

While we all love watching 399 and her cubs, there’s been concern recently about their eating habits. The five-some ventured farther south this fall and have been eating some human-related items, such as honey from a beekeeper’s hives and a compost pile.

That’s concerns Wyoming Game and Fish Regional Supervisor Brad Hovinga.

“Here’s a bear that’s long habituated to being around people,” Hovinga told the Jackson Hole News & Guide. “Now she’s in a new area that has different food sources, and some of those food sources are associated with human and residential activity.”

Wildlife photographer and advocate Tom Mangelsen was upset with the beekeeper for not properly taking care of his property.

“That’s not good,” Mangelsen told the newspaper. “The beekeeper needs to take responsibility for leaving honey out that the bears might find. Same thing with compost.

“You can’t just have stuff out,” he said, “and expect the bears to not find it and eat it.”

It’s not the first time this year, there has been worry about the most photographed group of bears.

One of her cubs was spotted limping around a month ago, but has seemed to improve since then.

In September, the bear family was caught on camera while the cubs were playing with traffic cones in Grand Teton National Park.

Grizzly 399 is considered the most famous bear in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. She has had around 16 cubs, including her latest four that were first seen this year.

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Grizzly Bear 399’s Cub Has Limp But Prognosis Good (We Hope)

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Photo Credit: EnjoyYourParks.com

Although the bear named “747” received top honors this year as the fattest bear of Alaska’s Katmai National Park, Yellowstone’s favorite grizzly bear “399” is probably the most talked-about bear of 2020.

Second-place honors might go to the grizzly who was minding its own business in an abandoned shed before a Montana man sneaked up on it (the man lost).

As for the bronze medal, we might go with the grizzly bear who — again was minding its own business — before a trailrunner (who wasn’t paying attention to the trail) literally ran into the bear and bounced off it.

And coming in in fourth (no medals sadly but in this age of participation trophies, we’ll send it a certificate), would be the bear who was minding its own business when a couple with a baby (seriously) was on the same trail as the grizzly and decided to do the exact wrong thing and run away from it. (Thankfully the bear probably rolled its eyes and just let them move on).

Regardless, and finally back to the topic, 399 is the 24-year-old grizzly who is always seen with her latest round of cubs — all four of them.

She’s been the topic of countless stories this year including an article from The Guardian which proclaimed “She Still Lives” when she emerged from hibernation, still standing with her cubs in tow.

As 399 and her now-much-larger cubs get ready for hibernation, we noticed that one of the little guys (we’re gender neutral here — we don’t know the sex of the cub so we’ll just call it a ‘him’) wasn’t faring as well as his siblings.

The site EnjoyYourParks (which is one of our all-time favorites) explained that the smallest of the cubs has a limp and that’s why you might see him behind the pack.

“Normally this cutie is right next to its mom but on this particular day it was having trouble keeping up with the rest of its family,” the site explained.

“We noticed this limp about a week ago and it has not worsened or improved throughout this time,” it said.

But don’t get too alarmed. The cub is apparently keeping up much better now and is now digging with both front legs.

In the past, the site explained the cub would just watch its siblings dig.

“This may be an indication the cub’s leg or paw is healing,” it said.

Or it could be an indication that the cub is really quite smart and having its siblings do all the work while he’s kicking back.

Either way, the site pledged to monitor the situation and provide updates when necessary. Keep up with its progress here.

By the way, it will probably be a while until the bears get ready for sleepy time. Late November is the time most bears get ready for winter hibernation but that is dependent on snowfall, temperature, and food supply.

We’ll keep you posted.

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Grizzly 399’s Cubs Stop Traffic To Wrestle & Play With Cones; No Tourist Gets Mauled

in News/Bears

We just loved watching these four grizzly cubs playing and wrestling in the roadway! The wildlife volunteers did a great job of keeping the onlookers at bay. #100yardpledgeWe hope everyone enjoys.

Posted by PipesTraveler.com on Monday, 31 August 2020

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All we know is we want to travel with this guy.

On Monday, grizzly bear 399’s four cubs stopped traffic in Grand Teton National Park so they could play with some orange traffic cones and wrestle with each other.

Remarkably, instead of tourists getting out of their vehicles and attempting to pet them, everyone appeared to stay inside.

Inside of one stopped vehicle right next to the frolicking cubs were Chris and Liz Pipes, who travel the country in their RV and report on their activities.

From the video, it sound like Chris Pipes could be a former TV anchor. He described what he saw like someone might do the play-by-play of the Rose Parade.

“These are the famous cubs of bear 399, a 24-year-old sow grizzly bear and we’re catching them right on the edge of the road here,” narrates Pipes.

“They are just having a ball,” he said. “We haven’t seen No. 399 yet. We suspect she’s down in the woods right there.”

“But the cubs are just having a ball, playing with the cones and wrestling,” he said. “This is a pretty remarkable chance sighting of these guys. So much fun.”

Could it be that no one went to pet them because they know that 399 (or any grizzly) is not to be messed with?

She’s got quite a history. Possibly the most famous bear in the world. If you are new to 399, here’s a great story that is worth the read.

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