With the two males killed Monday, it was the farthest grizzly bears have been seen east of the Rocky Mountain Front in more than a century.
The rule impacts grizzly bears in Grand Teton and Yellowstone national parks and the 20 million acre ecosystem, which includes Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.
Anchorage authorities said four young people were hiking in woods when three of them were injured after encountering the bear and two young cubs. They were taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The fourth youth wasn’t injured.
Chance of encounters becoming more likely as sport of mountain biking takes off in many communities around Montana and as state’s grizzly bear population continues to expand.
Timeline for publishing final rule for delisting the grizzly reportedly unclear, in part because of the transition of presidential administrations and reviews at U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Since coming under the protection of the Endangered Species Act, grizzlies have steadily expanded their habitat outward from the population’s core in Yellowstone National Park.
Federal wildlife officials are considering removing protections for grizzlies in and around Yellowstone National Park. This resolution would take that further and seek to declassify bears in the Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem and the Cabinet-Yaak area, as well.
The National Park Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are considering four options, including taking no action.
Plan offers 4 options for restoring animals in the state
American Indian tribes, conservation groups and some scientists tying up a decision on lifting protections for more than 700 grizzlies