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Grizzly bear kills 40+ sheep near Valier - KRTV News in Great Falls, Montana

Grizzly bear kills 40+ sheep near Valier

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Stock photo of grizzly bear (MTN News) Stock photo of grizzly bear (MTN News)
The Valierian reports that the bear has been killed. The Valierian reports that the bear has been killed.
BILLINGS -

Over the Memorial Day weekend, a grizzly bear sow attacked and killed more than 40 sheep, mostly lambs, on a ranch near Valier.  

This was the second time that this bear has killed on this ranch.  

Last July, the bear killed at least 10 sheep before being darted and relocated by Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks.

The grizzly bear and her cubs had been relocated to the North Fork of the Flathead River following the first attack last summer.  

The bear had been tracked traveling briefly into Canada and then returning back to the Marias River area late last summer, about six weeks after she had been relocated.

It was known by both FWP and the rancher, Don Sporleder, that she was still in the area this spring.  

On Sunday morning, Sporleder reported finding several dead ewes, and said his ram had been chased over the fence and killed about 50 yards away.  

Of the lambs, Sporleder said, many were missing or he only found parts of them left behind.  

FWP is now hunting the sow and plans to euthanize her.  

According to Gary Bertellotti, FWP Region 4 Supervisor, there is a process FWP goes through to determine if a bear needs to be euthanized.  

Typically a female bear would get three strikes before being killed, but based on the quick return this bear made to the same area and the affinity she has shown for sheep, it was determined she was very likely to be a chronic problem and needed to be removed.


(UPDATE, JUNE 1) The grizzly bear was shot and killed Tuesday evening near Lake Frances, according to reporter Natalie McAlpine of the Valierian.

We will update you if we get more details.

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