Wednesday, August 3, 2011

(Bear) death in Yellowstone

A month ago a hiker was killed by a grizzly bear in Yellowstone; nothing was done against the bear. Monday the Park Service killed a different grizzly bear that had charged a man and taken the food in his backpack.

The difference? The first bear appears to have been doing nothing but protecting her cubs (a misjudgment, but an understandable one). That sort of behavior doesn't indicate that the bear is any more likely to attack another hiker than any other bear.

The second one, however, seems to have figured out that hikers carry food and that you can get it from them (rather easily, in fact, if you're a bear). Its chances of challenging the next hiker he comes across, and even seeking out the trails where hikers can be found? They might be rather high, which makes this bear far more dangerous than the iconic "mama grizzly." So the bear was destroyed, even though no one had been killed -- yet. Thus confirming the dictum that "a fed bear is a dead bear."

1 comment:

Perplexity Peccable said...

Saw this free book on life in Yellowstone and could not help remembering your posts like this one