Grizzly Bear Attack Possible in Yellowstone Hiker's Death

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Grizzly Bear Attack Possible in Yellowstone Hiker's Death

Postby Todd » Sun Aug 28, 2011 2:25 pm

Investigators Suspect Grizzly Bear Attack in Yellowstone Hiker's Death

Published August 28, 2011

| Associated Press

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, Wyo. – Investigators have been searching a swath of Yellowstone National Park by air and foot as they try to determine whether a man whose body was found on a backcountry trail was the victim of a grizzly bear attack.

Rangers and wildlife biologists hoping to find clues as to how the man died continued to comb a central portion of the park Saturday on foot. He was found a day earlier by two hikers on Mary Mountain Trail, which runs northeast of the iconic Old Faithful geyser.

Investigators found grizzly bear tracks and scat near the man, but were not immediately sure whether the grizzly caused the man's death or disturbed his body after he died.

"Bears are opportunistic when it comes to food sources," Yellowstone spokesman Al Nash said. "It's very clear that there was a bear around the victim's body. What we don't know is whether this was a bear attack, or whether the bear came upon this man's body after he died."

An aerial search of the area Saturday turned up no bear activity.

Authorities say the man likely died Wednesday or Thursday. Park officials did not plan to name the hiker — a man in his 60s from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan — until Sunday, pending family notification.

His death comes after a female bear attacked and killed a 57-year-old California man on the popular Wapiti Lake Trail, several miles away from where the Michigan man was discovered Friday.

The female bear that killed the California man was not killed because officials said the sow was only defending its cubs and had not threatened humans before.

An autopsy is planned for the Michigan man in Montana, outside the park.

Yellowstone Superintendent Dan Wenk said that the hiker was found with a snack bar in his closed backpack, but that it appears the grizzly did not try to get at the food.

The 21-mile Mary Mountain Trail is closed from March to June because park managers list it as "high-density grizzly bear habitat."

Mary Mountain was closed after the man was discovered, along with the Cygnet Lakes Trail and a section of the Hayden Valley west of the Grand Loop Road.

Nash said that the Michigan hiker was staying in the park, but not camping off the Mary Mountain Trail. He was not carrying bear pepper spray, which is advised for hikers in the area, Nash said.

Source: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/08/28/in ... ers-death/
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"Nothing is easier than spending public money. It does not appear to belong to anybody. The temptation is overwhelming to bestow it on somebody." Calvin Coolidge
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Michigan Man Killed by Grizzly Bear in Yellowstone

Postby Todd » Mon Aug 29, 2011 5:38 pm

Michigan Man Killed by Grizzly Bear in Yellowstone

Published August 29, 2011

| Associated Press

BILLINGS, Mont. – Yellowstone National Park officials say a grizzly bear killed a 59-year-old Michigan man whose body was found by hikers last week.

The victim was identified Monday as John Wallace of Chassell, Mich.

Wallace's body was discovered along a trail about five miles from the nearest trailhead. Results of an autopsy released Monday concluded Wallace died as a result of traumatic injuries from a bear attack.

It is the second time a visitor to the park has been killed by a bear this year.

Investigators were not immediately sure whether the grizzly caused the man's death or disturbed his body after he died.

"Bears are opportunistic when it comes to food sources," Yellowstone spokesman Al Nash said earlier. "It's very clear that there was a bear around the victim's body. What we don't know is whether this was a bear attack, or whether the bear came upon this man's body after he died."

Authorities say the man likely died Wednesday or Thursday. His death comes after a female bear attacked and killed a 57-year-old California man on the popular Wapiti Lake Trail, several miles away from where the Michigan man was discovered Friday.

The female bear that killed the California man was not killed because officials said the sow was only defending its cubs and had not threatened humans before.

Yellowstone Superintendent Dan Wenk has said that the hiker was found with a snack bar in his closed backpack, but that it appears the grizzly did not try to get at the food.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/08/29/mi ... llowstone/
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"Nothing is easier than spending public money. It does not appear to belong to anybody. The temptation is overwhelming to bestow it on somebody." Calvin Coolidge
Todd
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Posts: 14434
Joined: Mon Jun 25, 2001 12:00 am
Location: Tennessee

Re: Grizzly Bear Attack Possible in Yellowstone Hiker's Deat

Postby Todd » Wed Oct 05, 2011 4:10 pm

Yellowstone National Park (ID,MT,WY)
Grizzly Linked To Hiker Deaths Euthanized

A grizzly bear sow and two cubs captured by Yellowstone National Park staff have been linked to the scene of the recent mauling death of a hiker in the Hayden Valley. Results from DNA tests obtained from bear hair and scat samples indicate the 250-pound, six- to seven-year-old sow was present at the scene on the Mary Mountain Trail where hiker John Wallace's body was recovered on August 26th. This is the same bear that was responsible for the death of hiker Brian Matayoshi during a defensive attack on July 6th on the Wapiti Lake Trail. Rangers and an interagency board of review determined Matayoshi's death near Canyon Village on the Wapiti Lake Trail resulted from a defensive attack by the sow protecting her cubs. "We will more than likely never know what role, if any, the sow might have played in Mr. Wallace's death due to the lack of witnesses and presence of multiple bears at the incident scene," said Dan Wenk, the park's superintendent. "But because the DNA analysis indicates the same bear was present at the scene of both fatalities, we euthanized her to eliminate the risk of future interaction with Yellowstone visitors and staff." The adult female grizzly was captured on Wednesday, September 28th; her two cubs were captured the next day and placed in the Grizzly & Wolf Discovery Center in West Yellowstone. The sow was euthanized on Sunday morning. Grizzly bear cubs typically adapt successfully to captivity. Adult bears that are removed from the wild do not adapt well to captivity. In the Wallace incident, Yellowstone officials determined that at least nine grizzly bears were feeding on two bison carcasses in the area, including one carcass which was located 150 yards from where Wallace was hiking alone on the Mary Mountain Trail. Seventeen bear "daybeds" were also found in the same vicinity. Capture operations, reconnaissance flights, and DNA sampling and testing will continue through the fall. Any future management decisions will be made on a case by case basis for any additional bears that are captured and provide a DNA link to the scene. Hikers are encouraged to travel in groups of three or more, make noise on the trail, and carry bear spray. Visitors are reminded that park regulations require people to stay at least 100 yards away from bears and wolves and at least 25 yards away from all other large animals.
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"Nothing is easier than spending public money. It does not appear to belong to anybody. The temptation is overwhelming to bestow it on somebody." Calvin Coolidge
Todd
Guide
 
Posts: 14434
Joined: Mon Jun 25, 2001 12:00 am
Location: Tennessee

Re: Grizzly Bear Attack Possible in Yellowstone Hiker's Deat

Postby Todd » Wed Oct 05, 2011 4:13 pm

Not good news for the park service. The bear that killed a hiker earlier in the year was left alone because it was a defensive attack, now that bear has been confirmed to have been involved in another mans death...
---------------------------
"Nothing is easier than spending public money. It does not appear to belong to anybody. The temptation is overwhelming to bestow it on somebody." Calvin Coolidge
Todd
Guide
 
Posts: 14434
Joined: Mon Jun 25, 2001 12:00 am
Location: Tennessee


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