WEST GLACIER – Park rangers in Glacier National Park captured and euthanized a black bear on Sunday, saying the animal had displayed aggressive behavior by entering campsites and charging visitors.
Park spokesperson Jennifer Lutman said the 100-pound bear had frequented the Fish Creek Campground almost daily for two weeks.
Efforts to haze the animal weren’t successful and relocation wasn’t an option.
“This bear was determined to be a food-conditioned bear and a potential threat to human safety,” Lutman said. “Food-conditioned bears are not relocated due to human safety concerns.”
Lutman said rangers set traps and captured the suspect animal on Sunday at roughly 7:30 p.m. Park personnel identified the animal through its distinct markings.
The female bear was approximately 3 years old. Black bears aren’t generally sent to zoos or animal parks because of their strong population and presence across the U.S.
Signs posted throughout the park remind visitors to keep campgrounds clean of food and trash in an effort to keep animals from becoming habituated to human offerings.
Park regulations require that food, containers and cookware be stored in a hard-sided vehicle or food locker when not in use.
“Yes, visitors are ticketed for poor food storage,” said Lutman.
The park was unable to immediately say how many visitors are ticketed each year for improper food storage.